David H. Kramer is a partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, where he specializes in Internet law and strategy. David regularly provides clients with guidance on cutting-edge strategies and novel theories of liability.
He currently represents Dropbox, Google, Pinterest, Square, and Twitter, among many other clients. In addition to his client work, David currently serves as a member of the firm’s board of directors.
As lead litigation counsel for Google in a variety of matters, David has obtained precedent-setting victories in lawsuits involving copyright law, online privacy, search rankings, and defamation:
- Viacom v. YouTube/Google & English Premier League v. YouTube/Google: Successfully defended consolidated copyright infringement actions challenging YouTube’s operations under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Secured orders establishing YouTube’s entitlement to the DMCA’s protections, defeating class certification, barring the recovery of punitive damages in copyright infringement actions, requiring that foreign plaintiffs register their copyrights in order to seek statutory damages under the Copyright Act, and protecting Google’s source code and users’ private videos from disclosure during discovery.
- United States v. Google: David was lead counsel for Google during a months-long FTC investigation regarding Google’s placement of cookies on Safari web browsers. The FTC’s complaint, alleging that Google violated a prior consent decree, was settled under an agreement in which Google denied liability. The settlement was then challenged and, over objection, was approved as serving the public interest. U.S. v. Google Inc., 3:12-cv-04177. More than 20 federal class actions regarding the same matter have been consolidated into a multidistrict litigation in Delaware. Google’s motion to dismiss that consolidated action was granted, and the matter is on appeal.
- Langdon v. Google: Successfully defended Google in action arising from Google’s refusal to carry plaintiff’s advertisements, and its alleged removal of plaintiff’s site from Google’s search results. Obtained order granting Google’s motion to dismiss plaintiff’s constitutional claims, as well as plaintiff’s fraud and deceptive trade practices claims based upon Google’s First Amendment rights and Section 230(c)(2) of the Communications Decency Act. Langdon v. Google 474 F.Supp.2d 622 (D. Del. 2007).
- Field v. Google: Successfully defended Google in copyright infringement action relating to the “Cached” links in Google’s search engine results. Obtained favorable summary judgment on direct copyright infringement, fair use, implied license, and DMCA grounds, and award of attorneys’ fees. Field v. Google, 412 F. Supp. 2d 1106 (D. Nev. Jan. 19, 2006).
- Parker v. Google: Successfully defended Google in action assertion claims for copyright infringement, defamation, and RICO violations arising from operation of Google Groups service. Obtained dismissal of case with prejudice. Parker v. Google, 422 F.Supp.2d 492 (E.D.Pa., Mar. 10, 2006). Decision was affirmed by the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. 2007 WL 1989660 (3d. Cir. 2007)
- Kinderstart v. Google: Successfully defended Google in putative class action arising from Google’s alleged removal of sites from its search results. Obtained order granting Google’s motion to dismiss plaintiff’s constitutional claims, as well as plaintiff’s antitrust, Lanham Act, unfair competition, and defamation claims. Kinderstart.com LLC v. Google 2007 WL 831806 (N.D.Cal. 2007).
- Lewis v. YouTube: Successfully defended YouTube in breach of contract and bad faith case arising from the company’s removal of user content from the service. The California Court of Appeals affirmed dismissal of the case based on the language of the YouTube Terms of Service agreement.
- Digital Envoy v. Google: Successfully defended Google in trade secret action arising from operation of Google’s AdSense service. Obtained summary judgment on all claims. Digital Envoy v. Google, 319 F.Supp.2d 1377, (N.D.Ga., May 21, 2004), 370 F.Supp.2d 1025 (N.D.Cal. 2005), and subsequent decisions.
- Black v. Google: Successfully defended Google in defamation action arising from its operation of its “Google Places” directory service, through which users can post and read reviews of various businesses. David argued that the plaintiff’s claims that Google unlawfully sponsored/endorsed/solicited those reviews were barred by Section 230(c) of the Communications Decency Act. Both the district court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the plaintiff’s attempts to circumvent Google’s statutory immunity.
David was lead counsel for Dropbox, Inc. in a trademark infringement lawsuit against Thru, Inc., which claimed to hold rights to the “Dropbox” name. Dropbox, Inc. prevailed on summary judgment on the grounds that Thru’s claims were barred by laches.
Dropbox also established as a matter of law that Dropbox, not Thru, was the senior rights holder. Following the summary judgment orders, the court awarded Dropbox $2.3 millionin attorneys’ fees and costs, after finding that the case was “exceptional” based on Thru’s delay and its conduct in the litigation.
David was lead counsel for Flipboard, creator of the extremely popular social magazine service, in a trademark infringement lawsuit against the makers of the Flowboard software application, and secured a permanent injunction barring use of the Flowboard name after trial. Flipboard v. Treemo, 53 F.Supp.3d 1342 (W.D. Wash. 2014).
David was counsel to RealNetworks in the first-ever case brought under the anti-circumvention provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and secured a preliminary injunction prohibiting the abuse of RealNetworks’ ubiquitous technology. RealNetworks v. Streambox, 2000 WL 127311 (W.D.Wash., Jan 18, 2000).
On behalf of Cybermedia, David successfully prosecuted a claim for copyright infringement against Symantec, obtaining a sweeping preliminary injunction requiring Symantec to conduct a nationwide recall of its popular “Uninstall Deluxe” and “System Works” products. CyberMedia v. Symantec, 19 F.Supp.2d 1070 (N.D.Cal. 1998).
David successfully defended Acxiom Corporation against a nationwide class action alleging violations of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and related state law claims, obtaining an early dismissal of the case with prejudice. In Re Jet Blue Airways, 379 F.Supp.2d 299 (E.D.N.Y. 2005). He also defended Acxiom against a nationwide class action alleging invasion of privacy and negligence, again obtaining early dismissal with prejudice. Bell v. Acxiom 2006 WL 2850042.
In addition, David defended XO Communications in a putative class action seeking $150 million in statutory damages under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and obtained rulings in both the trial and appellate courts barring class certification in the case. Levine v. 9 Net Ave., Inc. 2001 WL 34013297 (N.J. App. Div. 2001).
- J.D., Georgetown University Law Center
- B.A., Dartmouth College
- State Bar of California
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