Alan Friel is a partner in BakerHostetler’s Los Angeles office where he coordinates the firm's Retailing and e-Commerce industry initiative and is a member of its Advertising, Marketing and Digital Media; Privacy and Data Security; Content & Platforms; and Software teams.
Focusing his practice on intellectual property transactions, regulatory schemes, and privacy and consumer protection law, Friel is a thought leader regarding convergence legal issues — the property, liability and regulatory implications at the evolving intersections between media, marketing, technology, distribution, commerce, big data and communication brought about by the ongoing digital revolution. He represents clients in acquisitions, financing, distribution, development, publishing and financing transactions, especially in cases where complex intellectual property and regulatory concerns exist. He served as a general counsel for several years before returning to private practice in 2001 and understands how to give practical advice to business people and how to help them make informed business decisions. He brings the experience and foresight necessary to help companies and entrepreneurs navigate the compelling yet complex opportunities that disruptive technology creates.
Friel has been contributing to the development of the legal and business paradigms of cyberspace since the days of CD-ROM and bulletin board services, and negotiated the first experimental Internet production agreements with traditional Hollywood talent unions — SAG, DGA and WGA — in the 1990s. He remains on the cutting edge of emerging media, crafting alliances between TV producers and distributors and online services, as well as between big brands, social game publishers and app developers.
A sought-after speaker and counselor regarding the practical application of substantive legal issues, Friel is also an adjunct professor at Loyola Marymount School of Law. He is ranked among the Top Rated Lawyers in Technology by American Lawyer Media, was recognized by Legal 500 in its Technology, Media and Telecom (Technology/Data Protection and Privacy) ranking, and was named one of the Most Influential Lawyers in Digital Media and E-Commerce Law in the Los Angeles Business Journal.
- Counsels clients on the privacy, data security, technology, regulatory and intellectual property implications of using mobile, social and digital media. As these mediums become more integrated into marketing initiatives, the company may not be aware of the legal implications at great risk to their assets and goodwill and too often resulting in FTC and AG actions or class action lawsuits.
- Extensive experience in matters relating to live action and animation television and theatrical motion picture development, production and distribution.
- Negotiates branded entertainment and product placement and integration agreements.
- Represents clients regarding (online and offline) advertising, marketing, sponsorship and promotions.
- Drafts and negotiates licensing agreements and other intellectual property transactions.
- Addresses interactive game, digital, software and other technology matters.
- Structures research and development, manufacturing, distribution and sales arrangements.
- Advises on financing and acquisition arrangements.
- “No Purchase Necessary – Sweepstakes and Contests have become mainstays of the marketing arsenal, but they create legal issues for promoters,” Marketing Management, March/April 2008
- “New Ego-Regs – The FTC Considers Revising Environmental Marketing Rules,” Promo Magazine, March 2008
- “Harnessing Creativity or Creating Liability?” Internet Law & Strategy, November 2007
- “Coordinating the Roles and Responsibilities of Companies and Their Advertising, Marketing, Promotional and Interactive Media Agencies,” Los Angeles Business Journal, April 2007
- “Is Your Web Site COPPA Compliant?” Internet Law and Strategy, January 2007