John Giles
John GilesManaging Attorney

An overview

John Giles has years of practical experience applying his knowledge to organisations to help them grow and avoid legal problems, difficulties, or disputes. He always tries to add value to his clients. He embraces and uses technology to provide the best possible services to his clients.

Admitted as an attorney of the High Court of South Africa: August 2001

Stellenbosch University: BA LLB, 1992 – 1996

Microsoft Corporation Incorporated: Systems Engineer, 1998 – 1999

  • Privacy and the Protection of Personal Information (POPI)
  • The law relating to information, communication and technology (ICT)
  • The legal aspects of IT Governance, Risk and Compliance (IT GRC)
  • The memorandum of incorporation and shareholders agreements.
  • Plain legal language (particularly in the context of the Consumer Protection Act)
  • The law relating to marketing
  • Member of the King III IT Governance Sub-Committee (May 2009)
  • Attorney of the High Court of South Africa
  • Member of the Cape Law Society
  • Founder member of the IT Lawyers Forum of South Africa
  • Who’s Who Legal has recognised John as being among the world’s leading IT Lawyers
John is interested in new technology, open law, Web 2.0 and on-demand hosted solutions. He has experimented with digital media and spends his weekends surfing, walking his dog and connecting with his family and friends.

2008 – Present: Partner at Michalsons

John’s specialities include: Critical thinking to reach clarity. Making complexity, simple. Documents, discussions, processes, and laws are often very complicated – they don’t have to be. Helping people understand the implications of laws. Analyzing a situation to work out a practical course of action. Syncing body, mind and soul while surfing.

John is currently providing various practical corporate and ICT legal services, including:

  • Helping various organisations to comply with POPI, from dual listed multinationals to start-ups. In various industries, including retail, financial services, marketing, healthcare, manufacturing, and mining.
  • Running workshops and presenting to thousands of people.
  • Drafting and reviewing agreements, policies, checklists, templates, guides, reports, action plans, lists, registers, frameworks, letters, briefings, and opinions.
  • Running projects to convert hundreds of legal documents to plain language.
  • Auditing various companies for compliance.
  • Running many large projects on IT GRC, information security, and records management.
  • Helping organisations to address the legal aspects of IT Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) in a practical way to real issues.
  • Advising on the law regards marketing (including internet marketing) and advertising, including competitions and sponsorships.
  • Working with direct marketers.
  • Advising on the practical use of electronic signatures and the law regards electronic and automatic processes.
  • Advising on the law regards email.
  • Providing legal services regards digital or new media.
  • Advising on source code escrow arrangements.
  • Drafting MOIs and Shareholder Agreements.
  • Dealing with issues relating to intellectual property, especially copyright and confidentiality issues.
  • Conducting various IP audits.
  • Assisting organisations to comply with their obligations to provide access to information.
  • Finding solutions for technology start-ups.
  • Resolving domain name disputes, including transfers and disputes

2000 – 2006: Partner at Harty Rushmere Attorneys

John provided a broad spectrum of commercial and IT legal services relating to:

  • High value, complex end-to-end commercial technology transactions, including transactions involving software and services, enterprise resource planning (ERP) implementations, outsourcing, on-demand hosted solutions, and Software as a Service (SaaS). He advised large multi-national technology vendors (so is aware of international best practice) as well as small start-ups. He has also helped companies that procure technology and technology users.
  • Marketing (including internet marketing) and advertising, including competitions and sponsorships.
    Supplier, channel, and collaboration and teaming agreements.
  • The legal aspects of tenders.
  • Commercial deals of all types, including black economic empowerment deals.
  • Commercial transactions, such as sale and shareholder agreements.
  • Gaming, both traditional and online.
  • Electronic and mobile commerce, and the Internet, including web site terms.