Hosting a live event as a content creator

Whether it’s streaming video games on Twitch, posting make-up tutorials on Instagram, or creating food vlogs on YouTube, a content creator’s community is their lifeblood. As their community grows, it is natural for a content creator to start thinking about different ways to engage with that community. This might take the form of digital engagement, such as setting up a community discord or having giveaways on stream. As a content creator continues to grow their presence, however, they may start to consider hosting live events. 

Live events can vary from casual meetups with a handful of fans to hosting massive tournaments, gameshows, or other events. If a content creator is planning on hosting an event, especially a large event, then the content creator, as the event organizer, will likely need to consider different legal agreements. Those agreements may be with the event venue, with any other talent who will appear, or with the content creator’s community members. Understanding how each of these agreements tackles different issues and protects one from liability is essential for hosting a successful event.

In this three part series, we will cover the different legal concerns that content creators as event organizers should be familiar with before hosting a live event. In part one today, we will address legal regulations by various governing bodies.

Before hosting an event, a content creator should find out what, if any, laws and regulations may apply to the event. As an event host, a content creator is responsible for the safety of the participants and the public at large. Different laws and regulations can affect the planning of the event and key issues in legal agreements. Below are just some of the potential regulations and ordinances to consider.

Construction and Safety: State, city, and local ordinances often require approval for temporary structures, use of a public space such as a park or public road, or for crowds above a certain size, etc. Local regulations may also require that workers receive training in order for event organizers to set up and operate a live event. An event organizer may also need approval of a safety plan from the city government, fire department, police department, or other applicable entities.

Alcohol and Food: If alcohol will be served at an event that is open to the public, event organizers will likely need an alcohol license or permit. Event organizers can consider finding a venue that has an alcohol license or hiring a licensed caterer for such an event. Similarly, if food will be served, a municipal license or a contract with a licensed vendor will likely be necessary.

Nuisance and Noise: Local ordinances and zoning may determine the amount of noise the event can have at various times during the day. Venues close to residential areas may have a much earlier curfew for loud music, large audiences, vehicle operations, or animals.

Sport Regulations: Event organizers’ and attendees’ participation in sporting events has skyrocketed in popularity recently. The Amateur Sports Act of 1978 requires approval by certain governing bodies in order to run an Olympic-styled sport event such as boxing, fencing, shooting, etc. Plays, film exhibitions, live music, dance, and other entertainment activities may also be subject to various regulations or governing body approvals.

Platform and Company Policies: Event Organizers may look to rent venues or use services from different online platforms such as Airbnb. In the past, Airbnb was a popular platform for event organizers to arrange smaller and more private events. However, Airbnb and similar companies have started introducing strict policies governing the use of listed spaces for parties and events.

Whether hosting a team party at a local venue, putting on an impromptu concert for fans, or having an in-person giveaway, it’s important to recognize that state and city regulations govern how to host an event. It is necessary to comply with these regulations to avoid monetary and even criminal liability.

Kevin Dong

Kevin is an attorney at Odin Law and Media focused on corporate and entertainment transactions. He can be reached at kevin at odin law dot com.

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