Course description

Marketing Law and Regulation

Overview

The course’s goal is to train students on the different legal issues that can emerge throughout the marketing process. In particular, this course aims at:

  1. showing that marketing may have several legal implications – in order for students to recognize them and know how to manage them by using internal and external skills;
  2. showing how legal systems supply several business opportunities for marketing managers, in order for students to understand how to exploit the regulatory boundaries in a lawful, and yet efficient way.

In addition, the overcomplex reality characterizing contemporary marketing activities require operators in that sector to frequently cooperate with in-house or external lawyers in order to:

  1. comply with legal rules;
  2. morph legal rules – which laymen usually perceive as hurdles and obstacles – in business opportunities to increase income and market power;
  3. improve communications and develop joint market strategies.

Therefore, establishing a common framework of knowledge for these two professional roles to interact is pivotal. Considering Marketing as an iterative process, the course addresses legal issues and relevant regulations potentially emerging in the four phases of the creation of a product (e.g., consumer profiling and data exploitation); the price fixation and establishment of purchase condition; its promotion (e.g. regulation of communication, trademarks, creation of the brand, advertising) and placement (e.g. rules on distribution, involvement of intermediaries, and competition amongst operators).

In analyzing these topics, major attention is devoted to the role that emerging technologies play in reshaping B2C interactions and marketing strategies: making information costless, costlessy searchable, and comparable in real time, internet promoted a change in marketing’s main function, switching from information towards persuasion-based strategies.

The evolution of marketing, in light of the major technological developments – such as profiling, IoT and ICT products, and the exploit of Artificial Intelligence and algorithmic decision-making processes – challenges the capacity of traditional regulation to provide an effective framework for market operators to conduct business, therefore creating uncertainties for both consumers and professionals, that the course will unveil and address.

Selected Topics

  • Personal data – data protection and Privacy
  • Trademark law
  • Domain names, Adwords
  • Brand licensing Merchandising Advertising Behavioral advertising
  • Sponsorship
  • Ambush marketing
  • Online copyright
  • Internet service providers (ISPs) liability
  • Antitrust basics
  • Competition law in the digital world
  • Antitrust and data
  • E-commerce
  • E-commerce and antitrust

Bibliography

Given the heterogeneity of the topics that are addressed during the course, there is currently no existing reference book that can provide a unitary overview of all the different legal aspects involved in marketing activities. Therefore, teaching materials (slides and selected papers) available at the outset of the course will provide the essential basis for the course.