Some of you may wonder why Billboard is ending Entertainment Law Weekly. Since this is the final issue, I thought I would give you some behind-the-deal insight.




Susan Butler is the Editor of Entertainment Law Weekly and the Legal & Music Publishing Editor of Billboard.



Some of you may wonder why Billboard is ending Entertainment Law Weekly. Since this is the final issue, I thought I would give you some behind-the-deal insight.

I joined Billboard in July 2004 after a long-time friend at the magazine contacted me to ask if I would be interested in writing a legal column. I had been practicing entertainment law for 21 years at the time and had written for a number of tech magazines, was a columnist for ZDNet for a few years and had written a book on international law for e-business entrepreneurs.

After some conversations with Billboard's executive editor Ken Schlager, I realized that it would be exciting to start a new career as a journalist. When we decided that I would become a full-time journalist for Billboard, I also thought about ways to change Entertainment Law Weekly in my role as editor of this online newsletter.

I enjoyed expanding, ELW from a newsletter consisting of a few legal articles about music to one with legal and business articles covering music, film, television, videogames and other aspects of the entertainment industry. I added those business articles which I thought lawyers and others who were interested in law would find informative and useful.

I did this because when I started out as an entertainment attorney in the 1980s, I learned quickly how important it was to understand the business of music in order to represent my clients effectively. That is when I began reading Billboard religiously to learn about who was doing what, where it was happening and why it was happening.

After Billboard magazine launched its new design last spring, the editors began thinking more about the legal channel on our billboard.biz site. Since billboard.biz provides extensive news coverage, it was determined that combining such reporting with legal reporting will give lawyers and others who deal with legal issues access to a broader array of essential information.

Although ELW will no longer be offered as an online newsletter, ELW isn't really ending. It's just transforming itself to become a stronger legal channel on billboard.biz. I will be writing legal and music publishing stories for that channel and -- from time to time -- contributing behind-the-deal articles and insight gathered from industry experts on issues affecting the practice of entertainment law.

I invite all of you to contact me with your thoughts on issues important to you and your clients as we meet exciting opportunities and challenges in the upcoming years at sbutler@billboard.com. Thanks for reading Entertainment Law Weekly.




Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboardbiz

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