RLM | TrialGraphix Helps Jurors See Similarities Between Marvin Gaye’s Song and “Blurred Lines”

Posted on by brandon

Jurors in the recent high-profile copyright court case between the heirs of Motown legend Marvin Gaye and musical artists Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke were introduced to high-technology graphics, as well as audio and video presentations, plus expert testimony by musicologists in the course of the two-week trial that awarded nearly $7.4 million.

Copyright infringement suits are common but rarely make it to trial. In Pharrell Williams et al. v. Bridgeport Music et al, since the court ruled that playing the audio of the entirety of Gaye’s “Got to Give it Up” was not allowed, it was critical to demonstrate important excerpts of the music, as well as visual evidence showing the substantial similarity between the songs at issue. “This case exemplifies the power of visual and audio presentation and expert testimony,” says Principal Scott Carlin of RLM | TrialGraphix, which provided presentation and graphics support for the Gaye parties.

Scott Duval, senior litigation consultant with RLM | TrialGraphix, worked alongside the attorneys in the courtroom. “No doubt, the use of the audio excerpts prepared by the musicologists and the visual graphics helped the jury fully understand and grasp the issues they were being asked to decide,” he says. “We were able to show the juxtaposition of the similar elements between the two songs, which was important because the jurors were not able to hear the complete Marvin Gaye song” he adds.

Senior litigation consultant with RLM | TrialGraphix, Tom Lofgren who is also an accomplished composer, assisted the legal team. Working with the musicologists and the legal team, Lofgren helped develop a visual constellation of similarities between Williams and Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” and Gaye’s “Got to Give it Up.” “I believe the constellation chart was a powerful takeaway for the jurors. At least one of eight similar features appeared in virtually every measure of ‘Blurred Lines,’” Lofgren says.

 Richard Busch, lead counsel for the Gaye family, said it was a pleasure to work with Duval and Lofgren on the matter. “They were dedicated to helping us with our trial needs, and became very valuable members of my trial team.”

A myriad of audiovisual tools were used, including audio comparisons of songs, keyboard-accompanied analysis by musicologists, and live and deposition testimony from the celebrity parties themselves. The trial also included the playing of video recordings of Williams and Thicke, which were used both for impeachment and for extended playback of testimony. Duval led the playing of that testimony in real time during the trial.

The winning presentation led to the jurors’ final determination that Thicke and Williams copied portions of Gaye’s song “Got to Give it Up” to use on their 2013 blockbuster hit song “Blurred Lines.”

“It was a high privilege to assist the attorneys in making their arguments. We enjoyed the strategic challenge of making their story visually and audibly understandable,” Carlin says.


RLM | TrialGraphix Expands Chicago Office With two new Senior Litigation Consultants

Posted on by brandon


RLM | TrialGraphix is pleased to announce that Stacey Paul Carr and Monica O’Toole have joined as Senior Litigation Consultants in our Chicago office.

Stacey works closely with trial teams to develop persuasive visual presentations. Since 1996, she has consulted on a variety of matters involving product liability, mass tort, multi-district litigation, intellectual property, environmental law, contract disputes, antitrust issues, and pharmaceutical litigation.

Stacey’s expertise played a key role in securing a win for Bartlit Beck and their client, Bayer Corp., on the Haltom v. Bayer Corp. matter, a bellwether trial in Corpus Christi, Texas, where the plaintiff sought $560 million in actual and punitive damages and the jury found that Bayer was not liable; and Idera Pharmaceuticals v. Isis Pharmaceuticals, with McDermott Will & Emery, an arbitration in Chicago where a judge ruled that Isis Pharmaceuticals did not breach its terms in a licensing agreement involving technology used in genetic engineering.

“I chose to join RLM | TrialGraphix because of its people. I had a lot of experience working with many of their consultants over the years. Superior client service is my top priority, and this team has the resources to deliver,” says Stacey.

Monica has been in the industry since 1992, specializing in case analysis and the development of a strong visual presentation strategy. She has a reputation for delivering sophisticated and persuasive work.

Monica’s expertise was critical in the biggest criminal environmental prosecution in U.S. history, the three month United States v. W.R. Grace, et al. trial. W.R. Grace and its executives were acquitted on all counts. Monica also led the visual consulting for the tobacco manufacturers in the 2003 NPM Adjustment Arbitration. These nationwide proceedings related to the 1988 Master Settlement Agreement and resulted in the tobacco companies receiving in excess of $1 billion.

“I have a long-standing respect for RLM | TrialGraphix. I worked with several of the principals and have tracked the company’s success over the years. I am excited to now be a part of that growth, work with the talent that joined them along the way, as well as having new tools and resources to offer my clients,” says Monica.

“The addition of both Stacey and Monica is a unique opportunity to further strengthen our position in the Chicago market,” says Tessa Eckholm, RLM | TrialGraphix Senior Litigation Consultant.

Tony Canzanella, principal of RLM | TrialGraphix adds, “Attracting talented industry veterans like Stacey and Monica further establishes RLM | TrialGraphix as the largest, and most experienced, graphics and technology company in the country.”

To learn more about Stacey and Monica, please visit our website: www.goRLM.com.

Guy Joubert

Opening & Closing Presentations Must Work

Posted on by Guy Joubert

Don’t tell me, show me. That’s critical advice when it comes to both opening and
closing presentations. An opening is your first chance to form impressions and begin to deliver your message. Closings need to reflect elements of your opening, pulling together the most important “middle” – and making the whole, truly compelling.
Although attorneys are typically auditory learners, most people – including those who serve on juries – have a different style. They are visual learners and the things they see are more important than words alone. It’s not enough to talk them through an event, nor can you just show them a slide with bullet points to explain facts.
Research shows it won’t stick and might even confuse them. Instead, of talking atthem, show them a picture of an object or an event. Explain a concept through colorful graphics. Or give them a computer-generated animation that makes an event real.
It can make all the difference in terms of retention, understanding, and believing.
These things are especially true for the opening and closing, which need to be carefully tied together and should also reflect the contents of the “middle.” However, if you are going to convince them with images and visual cues, you need a plan – architecture. In other words don’t just subject them to uncoordinated and widely varying experiences.
Go for a consistent look and feel, ideally one that relates to the topic at hand and the concepts you are communicating. This should include a whole style of communicating that is coordinated – like the home decorator’s color palette or the communication patterns modeled in all marketing efforts by successful businesses.
Why? If you convey consistency and credibility, you can literally “tune in” the audience and get them to relax and open up to real communication. Presentation of the information itself must be equally well thought out.Then, when each part of your presentation makes a point, it sticks.
Do it Right
Set the tone with the opening. Show them how you are going to communicate and get them ready for more. Choose your colors, your graphic style, and even your pace (though you may want to vary that from time to time to reflect what you are
communicating). Consider different modes of presentation; charts, graphs, slides,
photographs, and videos. Pick the information that will build your foundation.
But, above all, give them a look and a style that is credible and consistent.
This is important not only because of how dependent most visual learners are on “rich” media – photos, moving images, etc. – but also because consistency and an appealing style can substantially improve what is understood and how it is understood.
Closing presentations are perhaps the most challenging of all. If you have done your
homework and developed a great look and feel – and if you have used the best tools to transmit the information – the jury will be primed and ready. Therefore, the closing must fit with everything that has come before in look, feel, and content. Then, it’s up to you to bring them the rest of the way; persuaded of your facts and your logic and willing to act on that information.

RLM Strengthens its Industry Leadership by Acquiring TrialGraphix

Posted on by brandon

“From Concept to Courtroom®”. RLM | TrialGraphix will serve leading law firms across the US with state-of-the-art graphics to illustrate complex cases

In recent years, professionally crafted graphics and trial technology have become crucial to the work of lawyers in high-stakes legal battles. On October 15, Resonant Legal Media (RLM), a consulting firm to leading law firms on their trial presentation needs, acquired TrialGraphix and their core services. The combined company is now the nation’s largest and most experienced graphics and technology firm, serving the legal community with over 90 professionals coast-to-coast.

The post-acquisition footprint of RLM | TrialGraphix includes offices in New York City, Alexandria, San Francisco, and Princeton, as well as new offices in Chicago, Miami and Los Angeles.

“Our expanded teams and locations strengthen our collaborative approach to delivering creative ideas, powerful presentations, and unparalleled service,” says Guy Joubert, founder and managing principal of RLM | TrialGraphix.

The majority of RLM | TrialGraphix customers come from the ranks of the AmLaw 100, American Lawyer‘s list of the nation’s top grossing law firms. RLM | TrialGraphix support over 60 trials a year. In a typical engagement, their professionals work closely with a legal team to develop and deliver persuasive trial presentations—graphics, illustrations, videos, and animations for jurors and for judges.

“I’m between back-to-back trials right now with graphics consulting from RLM on the first and TrialGraphix on the second.  It’s great to know that I now have the option of their combined resources and talent,” said Phil Beck, partner of Chicago-based Bartlit Beck.

The ability to make complex subjects more understandable to jurors is vital as RLM | TrialGraphixPrincipal Tony Canzanella explains, “Because people are so exposed to quality imagery in their daily lives – through entertainment, computers, and mobile devices – superior presentation capabilities are almost mandatory in today’s courtroom.”

RLM alone has handled over 1,000 litigation matters and prepared more than 150 tutorials for courts nationwide. The firm employs top presentation designers, illustrators, animators and trial technology consultants.

“Both RLM and TrialGraphix have supported our most demanding patent litigation for top clients like Samsung, Google, and many others.  They are experts at communicating complex technology and delivering flawless support in the courtroom,” said Kevin Johnson of Quinn Emanuel.  Silicon Valley based Johnson is a partner with Quinn Emanuel.

“We are very fortunate to team up with the talented design and technology professionals joining us from TrialGraphix,” says Canzanella.

“I have worked with both RLM and TrialGraphix on a number of trials and have had a great experience and great success with both companies. In the field of litigation graphics and technology support these two companies are unparalleled by their competitors and have the expertise and know how to handle even the most complex of cases. RLM and TrialGraphix have been a critical part of our team and our success at some of the most high-profile litigations in the last decade,” said Nick Gravante, a New York partner with Boies Schiller & Flexner LLP.

Joubert says exciting as this news is, his company’s most rewarding moments still come from working side-by-side with client teams in demanding and challenging cases. “We look forward to being with them in the courtroom, war room and wherever their cases take them,” he says.