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'D-Will' Tries Cutting Out the Middle Man

Positive press is not always guaranteed, even for marquee players covered widely in both the regional and national sports media. That’s why Brooklyn Nets point guard Deron Williams has his own press corps — a credentialed reporter that attends just about every Nets home game. Devon Jeffreys, the content coordinator for the digital branding agency Athlete Interactive, attends Nets games as a member of the media for the sole purpose of writing game stories, features and other articles that focus almost exclusively on “D-Will,” as Williams is known to fans. And as Jeffreys’ press credentials indicate, the stories he writes gets published on Williams’ own website,, which was created and is maintained by Jeffreys’ employer.

This article examines the marketing strategy of “owned” versus “earned” media and highlights athletes who are generating more positive visibility by distributing content through their individual websites and social media channels.

This article was first published in the January 15, 2013 issue of the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. Permission for article reprint has been granted.

Douglas N. Masters is a partner in Loeb & Loeb LLP's Chicago office, where he litigates and counsels clients primarily in the areas of intellectual property, advertising and unfair competition. He is deputy chair of the firm's Advanced Media and Technology Department and co-chair of the firm's Intellectual Property Protection Group. 

Seth A. Rose is an associate in the firm's Chicago office, where he counsels clients on programs and initiatives in the fields of advertising, marketing, promotions, media, sponsorships, entertainment, branded and integrated marketing, and social media.