FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

Michael Rhodes

Cooley LLP

San Francisco, CA, USA


Michael G. Rhodes

Primary Areas of Practice: Intellectual property litigation;  internet law; commercial class action litigation; trademark, copyright and advertising law; privacy law; technology law; white collar and regulatory defense. 

Law School: Loyola Law School (1984)

Work History: Mr. Rhodes has worked at Cooley LLP since 1988 and has served as a member of the Firm's Management committee since 2004.

Mr. Rhodes represents technology and Internet companies in matters involving patents, copyrights, trade secrets, and trademarks for clients such as eBay, PayPal, StubHub, Facebook, Google, NVIDIA and Digital Chocolate. He is co-chair of the Firm's Internet practice.

Mr. Rhodes has a leading privacy practice, currently handling multiple privacy class actions for Facebook, Provide Commerce, Clearspring and Medialets. He also has an extensive class action practice outside the privacy area, involving ecommerce, Internet advertising, copyrights, consumer rights, online payment processing, the California Auction Act, the California Credit Card Act and RICO.

Mr. Rhodes also represents venture capital funds in all manner of disputes and litigation, serving as the Chair of the Firm's Venture Capital Litigation practice group and frequently speaking at venture capital trade groups on litigation trends affecting the industry. 

The following are some of his recent matters:
- IP Litigation: successfully tried Facebook's first jury trial, Leader v. Facebook (D. Del), receiving a jury verdict invaliding the patent-in-suit 
- Investment Litigation: led the successful trial team on behalf of eBay in the eBay v. craigslist case in which Chancellor William B. Chandler, III of the Delaware Court of Chancery found that craigslist directors Jim Buckmaster and Craig Newmark "breached their fiduciary duties" to eBay by implementing provisions (including a poison pill) aimed at diluting eBay's stake to 24.9% from 28.4%, and hindering its ability to sell that stake to a third party (C.A. No. 3705-CC, September 9, 2010.)
" Shareholder Litigation: represented eBay in an earlier Delaware Court of Chancery case involving corporate governance. In re eBay Inc. Shareholders Litigation, 2004 WL 253521 (Court of Chancery of Delaware 2004) 
- Privacy Litigation: lead counsel for Facebook in the Facebook-Beacon privacy class action settlement approved by the federal district court in Spring 2010, which drew extensive national media coverage 
- Venture Capital Litigation: led a team which secured the dismissal of a suit against Softbank Asia Investment Funds for the alleged wrongful expulsion of one of its claimed partners

In 2010, Mr. Rhodes was one of 16 lawyers named as an attorney of the year by The Recorder for high-profile achievements in court.  He was also recognized individually, among others in Cooley's litigation department, in Benchmark Litigation Legal Guide, which noted that Cooley litigators "were incredibly strong and provided very insightful guidance."

From 2007-2011, he has been named to the Best Lawyers in America in the categories of Technology Law and Derivative Litigation for Los Angeles and San Diego and named to the San Diego Super Lawyers list in the category of Business Litigation.

Professional Memberships: American Bar Association, San Diego County Bar Association, Surfrider Foundation

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