TECHNOLOGY, OUTSOURCING, AND COMMERCIAL TRANSACTIONS
NEWS FOR LAWYERS AND SOURCING PROFESSIONALS
On November 18, days before the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 was due to start, Anheuser-Busch InBev (the owner of Budweiser, a World Cup sponsor since 1985) was dealt an unexpected yellow card: FIFA issued a statement that appeared to renege on certain terms of their $75 million (£63 million) commercial sponsorship agreement.
On May 6, 2022, the UK government outlined its plans to boost competition and drive economic growth and innovation in a major regulatory reform aimed at big tech. The news comes in the wake of fears that a handful of tech giants disproportionately dominate the market, subjecting smaller businesses to predatory prices and ultimately harming consumers through higher prices as well as limited options and control over their online experiences.
Future Watch
Following the success of the previous blog post “A Brief Overview of the Metaverse and the Legal Challenges It Will Present,” we are introducing a new feature for the Tech & Sourcing blog: “Future Watch.” Our Future Watch posts will focus on the most topical areas of the technology industry and will explore the associated legal challenges and potential future developments.
The European Commission confirmed on April 23, 2022, that the European Parliament and Council have reached political agreement the Digital Services Act (DSA) first published in December 2020. Morgan Lewis previously reported on the publication of the DSA.
As technology and the use of the internet continue to evolve, lawmakers remain focused on setting a legal framework for businesses operating “online” in Russia. In 2021, the Russian regulatory landscape underwent significant changes, which will no doubt have an impact on how tech and media companies conduct their business in Russia.
Contract Corner

Last week, we started to take a look at key issues sponsors should be mindful of when entering into a sponsorship agreement, particularly for sponsorship of a team, event, venue, individual influencer or player, or similar arrangements.

Contract Corner
With many sports, music, and other events returning to in-person attendance after a prolonged hiatus for pandemic-related reasons, and others continuing to be conducted in front of huge virtual audiences, we think it’s a good time to run through some of the most common issues we encounter in sponsorship agreements.
Draft law “On Activities of Foreign Companies in the Internet in the Territory of the Russian Federation,” introduced to the State Duma, a lower chamber of the Russian parliament, on May 21, 2021, aims to extend Russian jurisdiction to certain non-Russian internet businesses by requiring them to open local offices in Russia and to comply with orders of Roskomnadzor, a Russian internet and data privacy regulator. Failure to do so may result in restrictive measures limiting ability to work with Russian users and businesses.
Maryland enacted a state tax on digital advertising gross revenues on February 12, after overriding the governor’s veto. The passed law, which is the first of its kind in the United States, imposes “a tax on certain annual gross revenues derived from certain digital advertising services in the State” and requires those whose revenues will meet a revenue threshold to complete and file with the state comptroller a specific tax return to reflect such position. Failure to pay such taxes as required could result in interest owed on such unpaid taxes or criminal penalties for failing to file or falsely filing a return.
Russia has amended its main laws governing the internet to allow the government to restrict access to the internet and to control internet traffic in emergency situations.