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the constitution of the metaverse
proto-metaverses and
how videogames have changed everything

19-20-21 April 2023

the old hall
the honourable society of lincoln’s inn

In partnership with


Sponsored by

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The 2023 edition of our flagship event in the MTJG international conference series is coming back to London with a clear mission – to explore, to challenge, and to inspire our understanding and perception of the next meta-era of the video game and interactive entertainment sector. While the concept of the Metaverse continues to trend and attract considerable investment, it is hard to predict how the Metaverse is going to look like, whether there will be one or many iterations of Metaverse, and what the core issues and challenges will be. Public discourse tends to focus on issues that are not new. Many lessons can be learned from the video game industry that has been tackling them for over 20 years. The task ahead is to debunk false positives and non-issues and direct the conversation to address the gaps in our understanding. The research on standards and implementation is still scarce and the disruption of the IP legal regime by some of the crucial Metaverse components - such as interoperability and persistency - difficult to fully predict. Will IP law become the new digital constitution or an afterthought in this rapidly changing environment?

We are pleased to invite our speakers, sponsors and delegates to join us at The Honourable Society of Lincolns’ Inn, on the 19th-21st April 2023, for two and half days of insightful talks, presentations and panel discussions exploring different visions of and strategies for the Metaverse, the role of IP law, contracts, and regulation in shaping the foundations on which the dreams of previous generations can be successfully built.

Day 0 / 19th April - Ashworth Centre

17.30-18.00  Registration


Dr Michaela MacDonald, QMUL
Guy Robinson, Deputy Director of the Strategy Directorate, Intellectual Property Office

Presentation of the IP and the Metaverse study

Dr Michaela MacDonald, QMUL
Dr Yin Harn Lee, University of Bristol

Open Floor Discussion

Chair: Lars Olberg, Legal Advisor International Trade Relations, Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property
Guy Robinson, Deputy Director of the Strategy Directorate, Intellectual Property Office
Erich Hou-Richards, Senior Futures Advisor, Intellectual Property Office

20.00-22.00  Welcome reception

Day 1 /20th April 2023 - The Old Hall

9.15-9.45  Registration


Dr Gaetano Dimita & Dr Michaela MacDonald

A Blueprint for the Metaverse

This introductory session sets the scene for the conference by exploring the different visions of the Metaverse (what is possible), and the ambitions we ought to have for building and inhabiting this environment (what is desirable).

Chair: Lord Justice Colin Birss
Ulrike Till, Director IP and Frontier Technologies Division, WIPO
Ben Golant, Adjunct Professor Georgetown University Law Center - Senior Director for Global Video Game Policy, TenCent
Mark Sheperd, Head of Legal, Improbable
Tim Scott, Director of UK public policy, Roblox

The Metaverse has already been patented

The infrastructure and technology, on which the Metaverse is being built, are not new, let alone novel. The experts on this panel will talk us through the patents of the past that have led the way into our future.

Ross Dannenberg, Partner, Banner & Witcoff
Gwilym Roberts, Partner, Kilburn & Strode


Interoperability is a key attribute of the Metaverse. This panel will consider the distinct aspects of interoperability - technological standards, IP, and licences.

Chair: Uma Suthersanen, Professor of Global IP Law, QMUL
Monika Gebel, Lead Intellectual Property Counsel, People Can Fly group
Chris Ewing, Senior Legal Counsel (Commercial & Privacy), Improbable
Rupam Davé, Partner, Harbottle & Lewis

Michele Woods, Director Copyright Law Division, WIPO


Generative AI

The building blocks, underlying content and possibly entire virtual worlds will be generated by AI. Will the use of AI deliver a brilliant future, or trap us in a recent past?

Chair: Ryan Black, Partner, DLA Piper
Mikolaj Skowronek, Senior Legal Counsel, Ubisoft
Rukshana Hoque, Associate General Counsel, Zenimax
Nick Kempton, Senior Legal Counsel, Square Enix
Scott Kelly, partner, Banner & Witcoff

User-generated content

The panellists will explore the main challenges associated with the creation and dissemination of user-generated content, which will become ubiquitous in the Metaverse. How can we encourage and facilitate user creativity while managing emerging infringement risks?


Chair: Sean Kane, Partner, Frankfurt Kurnit
Ewelina Jarosz-Zgoda,VP of Legal & General Counsel, CD Projekt Red
Kostya Lobov, Partner, Harbottle & Lewis
Alexandre Rudoni, Partner, Allen & Overy
Wojtek Ropel, Partner, Advent Beiten

Music in the Metaverse

The creation, performance, and exploitation of music in the Metaverse will present another layer of complexity to an already complex chain of rights in the music licensing process. Our experts will consider how to navigate the opportunities and threats posed by the Metaverse.


Chair: Andy Ramos, Partner, Perez-Llorca
Vickie Nauman, Founder & CEO, CrossBorderWorks
Eva Nitti, Legal Counsel, Improbable
Jonathan Coote, Associate, Clifford Chance
Alexander Ross, Partner Wiggin

19.00-00.00   Evening reception

Day 2 / 21st April 2023 - The Old Hall

9.00-9.30  Coffee/tea


Trade Marks & designs in the spotlight

This panel will put TMs and design rights under the spotlight, in connection to unique opportunities presented by NFTs,, by facilitating commercial transactions and marketplaces within the Metaverse. Who will have the final word on fictional TMs, what constitutes a use of a mark, or the expansion of virtual designs?

Chair: Harri Salmi, Member of the EUIPO Second and Third Boards of Appeal
Yaniv Benhamou, Associate Professor in Digital Law, University of Geneva
Alina Trapova, Lecturer in Intellectual Property Law, University College London
David Stone, Partner, Allen & Overy LLP

Brand building in the Metaverse

For many brands, expanding into the Metaverse is a natural progression for their commercial and IP strategy.

Chair: Dr Michaela MacDonald, QMUL
Alix Faguer, Senior Legal Counsel eSports and Digital Products, FIFA
Greg Boyd, Partner, Frankfurt Kurnit
Tom Grogan, Chief Executive Officer, MDRxTECH LLP

Alternative dispute resolution

With the expansion of the Metaverse and digital marketplaces, we can expect an increased number of disputes, between rightholders, users, and platforms. In order to provide speedy, efficient, and affordable resolution, will traditional arbitration rules and services need to be updated?

Aurelio Lopez-Tarruella Martinez, Director of the MetaverseUA Chair, Professor, University of Alicante
Sophie Nappert, International Arbitrator


A human centric Metaverse

Our panellists will discuss how to achieve a human centric Metaverse by design. What lessons can be learned from competition/antitrust, data protection, and consumer protection laws?

Chair: Isabel Davies, Associate, Wiggin
Heidi Holman, Assistant General Counsel, Microsoft Corporation

Jon Festinger, Professor, University of British Columbia
Will Deller, Senior Associate, Bird & Bird

A constitution for the Metaverse

The conference will close with a session exploring the role of IP in designing, creating and experiencing the Metaverse. Will IP become a guarantee of creativity and freedom or a path to dominance and digital servitude?

Chair: Lord Timothy Clement-Jones
Andy Phelps, Professor, University of Canterbury
Micaela Mantegna, TED Fellow & BKC Harvard Affiliate

Willy Duhen, Senior Director, Legal, Activision Blizzard King

Closing remarks

16.00-17.00  Drinks reception

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