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Clear Channel v. JamSports: Court Proceedings Begin

(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Opening arguments were presented on Tuesday in a lawsuit alleging that media giant Clear Channel Communications illegally blocked Chicago-based rival JamSports from promoting supercross dirt-bike events.

Jerry Mickelson, founder of concert promoter Jam Productions, is set against Clear Channel, claiming that the company used its vast market power to keep JamSports out of the supercross business. Clear Channel’s lawyer, Chris Gair, argued that it was simply being an aggressive competitor as a promoter, which is simply following fair business practices.

JamSports is claiming that Clear Channel threatened stadium owners that it would no longer put on concerts or monster truck meets at their venues if they hosted any JamSports events. JamSports was in the midst of renewing a contract to be the American Motorcyclist Associations exclusive promoter through 2009 when the deal fell through because of the Clear Channel threats.

Clear Channel won the contract.

JamSports’ lawsuit states, “By leveraging its dominant market power in the concert, motor sports and media markets, Clear Channel induced stadium owners to refuse to deal with JamSports,” according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

The $10 million antitrust lawsuit filed by JamSports against Clear Channel Communications, was originally set to go to trial on November 15, 2004, in Chicago, and was postponed until this year. –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers