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On July 13, DC Managing Partner Michael B. DeSanctis was recognized by The National Law Journal in its "40 Under 40: Washington’s Rising Stars" feature. The newspaper’s editors wrote that Mr. DeSanctis and the other honorees "will play a major role in the legal community of the nation's capital — and therefore of the nation — for years to come."
In recognizing Mr. DeSanctis, the NLJ noted his role as lead counsel for SoundExchange in the 2007 Copyright Royalty Board trial that resulted in dramatically increased royalties paid for music played on satellite radio. Representing SoundExchange and, through it, the interests of the majority of the country’s recording artists and record companies, Mr. DeSanctis led a team of ten lawyers through the entire case, culminating in 30 days of trial. In January 2008, the Board granted the artists and record companies a 300% increase in royalties -- a ruling worth well over $1 billion. "Record companies and recording artists have Michael DeSanctis to thank for the size of the royalties they receive for satellite radio play," said the NLJ.
The newspaper also noted Mr. DeSanctis’ practice focusing on the music, television and entertainment industry, and the intersection of new technology and the Internet. The NLJ referenced in particular his work representing Viacom, Inc. in its high-profile copyright infringement suit against YouTube and Google, in which he is managing technology aspects of the case, and handling all technology experts.
In addition, Mr. DeSanctis secured a precedent-setting victory for the recording industry in 2007 in a case of first impression under the Audio Home Recording Act in Atlantic Recording Corp. v. XM Satellite Radio Corp. Adopting his arguments, the court held that XM Radio was not immunized from copyright liability under the AHRA when it made portable devices that can receive and store permanent copies of satellite radio broadcasts.
Mr. DeSanctis is a member of the Firm’s Litigation Department and Co-Chair of the Election Law and Redistricting Practice. He is also a member of the Creative Content and Communications Practices. Mr. DeSanctis serves on the Firm's Management Committee.
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