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No Quarter: The Limitations of Protection Under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act

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Description: Section 230 is in the news a lot lately as calls to reform or replace it are coming from both sides of the aisle. But for now, it remains the law of the land, and despite its reputation as protecting platform companies against lawsuits for most content that their users post on their platforms, it does not provide them with absolute immunity. If you’re a platform company, you likely know what kinds of legal claims Section 230 immunizes you against, and that you can probably quickly win on a motion to dismiss if those claims are brought against you. But there are certain claims – some defined by statute, others developed by the case law – that Section 230 does not shelter. This presentation focuses on those types of claims.
Nate Garhart’s practice centers on protecting and maximizing the value of various forms of intellectual property, which often represent important assets and major revenue sources for organizations ranging from startups to public companies and nonprofits.
Nate’s work spans the gamut from selecting and registering trademarks, to protecting and enforcing copyrights, to strategic negotiation of licenses of all kinds. He also works with clients to minimize the legal risks related to their branding, advertising, and publicity strategies. Online, he counsels clients on internet issues and e-commerce topics, drafts website terms of use and privacy policies helping clients comply with Europe’s GDPR and California’s CCPA, and reviews customer communications for compliance with current laws.
Clients retain Nate because while he specializes in the protection of intellectual property, he considers the business as a whole. Registration, a demand letter, or a licensing agreement has no meaning or value without an understanding of the business goals of the owner. With this understanding, he is able to identify the right legal tool for the situation, and manage disputes and deals in the most strategically appropriate manner for a client.
In short, Nate delivers value to clients by focusing on results.
Erik Olson is a trial lawyer whose practice focuses, albeit not exclusively, on intellectual property matters.
Erik has an exceptionally broad range of experience with respect to the subject of his cases, the forum in which they’re resolved, and the technologies at issue. He has handled cases involving technologies and topics ranging from patents and copyrights to trade secrets and trade dress, as well as disputes over licensing royalties and ownership of intellectual property. He has advocated in numerous different courts and jurisdictions, both in the United States and abroad, including the Eastern District of Texas, a popular venue for patent cases, New York, Switzerland, and elsewhere. He has also represented clients before several arbitration bodies—commercial arbitration involving breaches of development agreements, for example, and international arbitration involving a patent license.
The technologies at issue in Erik’s cases have also been exceptionally diverse: biotechnology, nanocrystals, electrochromic glass, data centers, mattresses, corrugated stainless steel tubing (CSST), WiFi, USB, Android software, and other technologies relating to smartphones and tablet computers. In addition to IP matters, he has also litigated a variety of other forms of disputes, ranging from cases that encompass both employment law and IP to family law matters in which trusts and other entities managed by a client became involved in a community property claim following the dissolution of a marriage.
As an advocate, Erik’s approach is to work with clients to develop a nuanced understanding of both the legal objective in a dispute, and the business goals to which it is connected. With that in place, he uses it to shape his tactics for the various stages of a case, beginning with discovery and motion practice, and carrying through settlement negotiation, summary judgment and, if necessary, a trial or hearing. As he has represented both plaintiffs and defendants, he is also keenly aware of his opposition’s priorities and challenges, which makes him an exceptionally effective tactician. For instance, as a defendant, he strives to put forward an affirmative case rather than just attempting to negate the plaintiff’s claims.
In short, Erik brings to his cases the perspective of a seasoned, experienced and above all, strategic trial lawyer, whose specialty happens to be IP, but whose capabilities have proven effective in many kinds of cases, in many different settings.

Practice Areas: Administrative Law & Regulation, Communications & Media Law, Information Technology Law & E-Commerce
Online Media Type: Audio
Production Date: 12/15/2021
Level: Intermediate
Category: Standard
Duration: 1 Hours, 2 Minutes
Online Format: On Demand

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Credit Eligibility:
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Total Credits: 1
Specialty Credits: 
Status: Reciprocal Credit Available
Expiration: 12/14/2024
Training Type: Online

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Nate A. Garhart - Farella Braun & Martel LLP
Erik H. Olson - Farella Braun & Martel LLP
This product is designed to provide information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is sold with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professional service. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional person should be sought.

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