Janet MacKenzie

Janet MacKenzie

Director, Sector Head

Janet MacKenzie is a Director and Head of our Convergence and New Media sector. Janet has over 18 years of experience in advising on all legal and regulatory aspects pertaining to telecommunications, broadcasting, media and entertainment. She has represented numerous major international and domestic corporations before Parliament and the sector regulator and has substantial expertise in the negotiation and structuring of complex transactions specific to the ICT sector.

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Janet started her legal career as a Candidate Attorney at Cliffe Dekker & Todd. She was admitted as an attorney in 1992. She was appointed as a Director of Cliffe Dekker & Todd in 1995 where she practiced until September 2009, specialising in telecommunications, broadcasting and media law.

From 2009 to 2015, Janet was employed by MultiChoice as a Director of Legal Services, where she had oversight of the legal team responsible for the acquisition of all international and local content on MultiChoice’s DStv platform. In this role, Janet was involved in the contracting required for the launch of a variety of new product and service offerings, including content delivery over online and mobile platforms and various on demand offerings. Her responsibilities at MultiChoice also entailed the negotiation of contracts relating to transactions of strategic importance for the acquisition of media content from the Hollywood studios and other major international suppliers.

Janet joined Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr as a Director in March 2016.

  • Represented various telecommunications service licensees and broadcasters in making representations to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Communications on the draft Electronic Communications Act, the ICASA Amendment Act and the Broadcasting Amendment Act.
  • Made representations on behalf of Print Media SA to the Government Communications and Information System (GCIS) on the Media Development and Diversity Act.
  • Acted on behalf of Print Media SA in making representations to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Communications on the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Bill.
  • Represented various telecommunications service licensees in making representations to the Department of Communications on the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provisional Communication-related Information Act.
  • Made representations on behalf of a major broadcasting signal distributor to the Department of Science and Technology on the Astronomy Geographic Advantage Act.
  • Represented Print Media SA in making representations to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Health on the Foodstuffs, Cosmetics and Disinfectants Amendment Act.
  • Represented Print Media SA, South African National Editor's Forum and Magazine Publishers Association of South Africa in making representations to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs on the Films and Publications Amendment Act.
  • Acted for Massmart and the Board of Airline Representatives of South Africa in making written representations to the Department of Trade and Industry on the Consumer Protection Bill.
  • Acted for Independent Newspapers and Coca-Cola in making written representations to the Department of Trade and Industry on the Lotteries Act.
  • Acted for a major South African bank in respect of the outsourcing of its telecommunications operations.
  • Acted for a major telecommunications operator in respect of its network and infrastructure build and roll out.
  • Acted for a South African telecommunications operator in proceedings before the High Court to set aside and review the supplementary facilities leasing and interconnection guidelines made by ICASA and the Minister of Communications.
  • Acted for a South African telecommunications operator in proceedings before the competition authorities in respect of a complaint lodged against another operator for anti-competitive conduct in the provision of network services.
  • Assisted various international and local entities with their applications for electronic communications service licences, electronic communications network service licences and pay television subscription licences as well as with the conversion of existing licences to those envisaged under the Electronic Communications Act.
  • Specialisation in a wide range of telecommunications agreements, including interconnection and access agreements, facilities, leasing and management, hardware supply/procurement/leasing, project development, system implementation and integration agreements, satellite transponder leasing and associated service level agreements, co-location and hosting agreements, construction and infrastructure agreements, network service agreements, reseller, channel and MVNO arrangements and general services agreements, standard provider terms and conditions, user policies, disclaimers and non-disclosure, consulting and service level agreements, and the preparation of tender documents.
  • Specialisation in a wide range of broadcasting, media and entertainment agreements, including licensing agreements, format licensing agreements, pre-sale agreements, production agreements, script development agreements, director and talent agreements, presenter agreements, advertising agreements, publishing agreements, sponsorship agreements, service and supply agreements, distribution agreements, airtime/barter agreements, marketing and consulting agreements, standard provider terms and conditions, user policies, disclaimers and non-disclosure and service level agreements.
  • Submission and defending of various complaints before the Advertising Standards Authority of South Africa.
  • Chambers Global 2018 ranked Janet in Band 3: Media and Broadcasting
  • Best Lawyers International 2008 and 2009 listed Janet in both the inaugural and 2nd editions as one of South Africa's best lawyers in Media Law.
  • The PLC Cross-border Communications Handbook, in their "Which Lawyer" series 2007 rated Janet as "Highly recommended" for Telecommunications and "Recommended" for Media.
  • Janet acted as the external examiner for the Masters Course in Telecommunications at the University of Witwatersrand.

Education

  • BA, LLB, LLM University of Witwatersrand
  • Year of admission as an attorney: 1992
  • Year of admission as a notary public: 1993

Memberships

  • Law Society of the Northern Provinces