Your commercial news round-up: Meta, Lego and Queer Eye, Manchester City, Bitcoin

updated on 13 January 2022

Reading time: three minutes

As the second week of January draws to a close, recapping on the previous year’s top commercial news stories is a great task for aspiring lawyers. Which stories are still relevant? Are you up to date on how Bitcoin is performing? What’s happening in legal tech that you should be aware of? And ultimately, how do your chosen stories impact law firms as businesses, their clients and the industry as a whole? For now, though, take a look at LCN’s summary of some of this week’s interesting stories.

  • The US Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) revised claim against Facebook – now Meta – has been deemed “far more robust” by a federal judge, with the FTC receiving the go-ahead to take the tech company to court over anti-trust rules. The FTC hopes to make Facebook sell Instagram and WhatsApp, which it bought in 2012 and 2014, in a bid to eliminate the alleged monopoly that the FTC claims Facebook has of the market, according to the BBC.
  • Artist James Concannon, who created a custom leather jacket for Queer Eye star Antoni Porowski, is suing Lego for copyright infringement over its mini Queer Eye figures. According to James, Lego “intentionally” copied his leather jacket design, which appeared on the hit Netflix show, for its Antoni Porowski figure without the artist’s knowledge and approval. James, who has a copyright registration with the US Copyright Office for the jacket, alleges that Lego “painstakingly copied not only the individual creative elements of the jacket, but the unique placement, coordination, and arrangement of the individual artistic elements, as well”. Mike Dunford, lawyer and IP research explained on Twitter that the case James has brought against Lego depends on whether the court finds that the “unique placement, coordination, and arrangement” of the elements on the jacket are actually “protectable and infringed notwithstanding the substitution of different individual artistic elements”.
  • Manchester City revenues surpassed those of derby rivals Manchester United for the first time, according to recent figures. The Premier League’s former richest club Manchester United generated €557 million in the 2020/21 season, while City’s operating revenues hit €664 million, following the club’s Premier League title win and UEFA Champions League final position. The operating revenues of the club increased 17% year on year, according to KPMG, which includes broadcast, match day and commercial income. Football finances were impacted by the wrath of the pandemic, with games played behind closed doors for a huge period of the 2020/21 season.
  • Earlier this week Bitcoin briefly hit a five-month low of £29,154, following November’s record high of £50,854. The fall in value comes amid concerns over US interest rate rises and subsequently a wider sell off in risk assets, according to Sky News. The unrest in Kazakhstan – the world’s second biggest location for Bitcoin ‘mining’ – has also been named as a reason for the slide.

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