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Apply NowApply Later Job ID 930520BR Location New York, New York, United States Business The Walt Disney Studios Date posted Apr. 03, 2022

Job Summary:

Disney Legal is seeking a highly qualified attorney to take on a wide range of responsibilities advising ABC News and the news operations of the ABC owned television stations on legal issues arising in newsgathering and editorial activities, including pre-publication review of broadcast, on-line, and streaming news reports and guidance on libel, privacy, access, and copyright (fair use), as well as advising the ABC owned stations, ABC News, and ABC Entertainment clients on a range of FCC and FTC regulatory issues. Initially the Counsel will work under the direct and on-going supervision of other attorneys in the ABC Law & Regulation group, but eventually the Counsel will be expected to work with substantial independence providing legal advice directly to ABC clients.

The ABC Law & Regulation group is based in New York City and Counsel would presumptively be based there as well, but location in Disney/ABC offices in Burbank, California or Washington, DC may be discussed as well.


The ABC Law & Regulation group provides legal advice and support to ABC News, the ABC owned television stations, ABC local and network political sales, and the ABC scripted and unscripted Broadcast Standards & Practices groups on a wide range of matters including: editorial and newsgathering issues involved in the preparation and the broadcast, on-line and streaming distribution of national and local news programming (e.g. libel, privacy, trespass, surreptitious recording, subpoenas, access, copyright/fair use); FCC and FTC regulatory issues (e.g. licensing, children’s programming, political and issue advertising, equal time, indecency, sponsor identification, public file, FCC EEO requirements, issues/programs reports, closed captioning); and sweepstakes/ contests/ promotions. Depending on the attorney’s prior experience and the group’s needs, the successful applicant for the Counsel position will be expected to take on some combination of the following duties:

  • Reviewing news scripts and rough cuts for libel, privacy, copyright (fair use) and other issues, and working with network and station news teams to address such issues;
  • Reviewing investigative and newsgathering proposals and advising network and station news teams on legal risks and suggested approaches;
  • Drafting, reviewing, and/or revising a variety of releases, consent forms, nondisclosure agreements, and other documents;
  • Reviewing and advising network and station news teams on retraction demands, takedown requests, subpoenas, copyright infringement claims, and other legal threats and challenges;
  • Reviewing network and station political and issue advertising to ensure it complies with federal and state regulations, meets ABC standards, and (in the case of issue and non-candidate political advertising) does not raise libel, privacy, or other issues
  • Review and advise station clients on political advertising rate issues, children’s programming requirements and reports, issue//program reports, FCC EEO obligations, closed caption requirements (including responding to viewer complaints), sponsor identification rules, and/or other FCC regulatory matters
  • Review and advise network and station clients on the devising and execution of sweepstakes, contests, and promotions and associated rules.

It is expected that the Counsel will begin working under the close supervision of attorneys within the ABC Law & Regulation group but that over time the Counsel will take on increasing responsibilities and independence in their work with their own set of news clients, as well as assisting with other clients when colleagues are out of the office. .

Basic Qualifications:

  • JD or equivalent
  • Strong academic credentials
  • Admission to the New York State Bar or willingness and qualification (including admission in another state) to register as in-house counsel in New York State
  • Minimum of two years of law firm and/or in-house attorney work preferably including experience in one or more of the following:
    • Pre-publication review and/or litigation defense of news content, including experience with libel, privacy, newsgathering, and copyright/fair use;
    • FCC broadcast regulatory work in the areas noted above;
    • Contest and promotion review.
  • The candidate must have excellent interpersonal and communication abilities, including the ability to work well with both attorneys and journalist clients; possess outstanding legal analytic skills; demonstrate motivation, accountability and independent initiative; be willing to take on evening and weekend coverage assignments and to be on call for news clients essentially 24/7; and be able to prioritize, multitask and work quickly and collaboratively under tight deadlines in a fast-paced and continuous news cycle environment.

Additional Information:

#legalaffairs, #LI-GG1 and #CORP_MEDIA

About The Walt Disney Studios:

For over 95 years, The Walt Disney Studios has been the foundation on which The Walt Disney Company was built. Today it brings quality movies, episodic storytelling, music, and stage plays to consumers throughout the world. The Walt Disney Studios encompasses a collection of respected film studios, including Disney, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm, 20th Century Studios, and Searchlight Pictures. It is also home to Disney Theatrical Productions, producer of world-class stage shows.

About The Walt Disney Company:

The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a leading diversified international family entertainment and media enterprise with the following business segments: media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, consumer products and interactive media. From humble beginnings as a cartoon studio in the 1920s to its preeminent name in the entertainment industry today, Disney proudly continues its legacy of creating world-class stories and experiences for every member of the family. Disney’s stories, characters and experiences reach consumers and guests from every corner of the globe. With operations in more than 40 countries, our employees and cast members work together to create entertainment experiences that are both universally and locally cherished.

This position is with TWDC Enterprises 18 Corp., which is part of a business we call The Walt Disney Studios.

TWDC Enterprises 18 Corp. is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or protected veteran status. Disney fosters a business culture where ideas and decisions from all people help us grow, innovate, create the best stories and be relevant in a rapidly changing world.

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