I’ve served as a Social Media Expert Witness in a number of cases, and have long-term experience in social media. In fact, I have been involved in social media for around 36 years, since long before the term ‘social media’ was in use (it appeared around 1998, but didn’t begin to enter into popular usage until 2007 or so).
I was working online in 1984, usingh CompuServe and BBS systems, later working with Prodigy and AOL, and first worked on the Web in 1993 (a time when there were only 200 Web sites in the entire world). In 1992 I wrote the documentation and helped design the user interface for a Compuserve “navigator” program (NavCIS). In 1993 I wrote the Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Internet, followed by The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the World Wide Web and other related titles. These books included coverage of early Internet-based social-networking tools, such as Web-based forums, Usenet newsgroups, Listserv/email based discussion groups, Internet Relay Chat, and so on. I was also very familiar with early online communities such as Geocities and Tripod in the late ‘90s. In 1994 I was a Compuserve forum moderator for WUGNET, an early forum-management company.
Over the years I’ve worked with LinkedIn (20,000+-member network; I’m also a LinkedIn Learning trainer), Facebook, MySpace, MeetUp, G+, Twitter (3,000 followers), StumbleUpon, Tumblr, delicious, Reddit, Pinterest, Telegram, Discord, and others.
I have served as a Social Media Expert Witness in cases such as the following:
- Pinterest v. Pintrips
A trademark case brought by the Pinterest social network; my report and court testimony helped to kill Pinterest’s trademark on ‘pin‘
- Indacon, Inc. v. Facebook, Inc.
A patent case
- Louis Bacon v. Peter Nygård
A defamation case involving the use of social media
- RIPL Corp. vs. Google, Inc.
I served as a Social Media Expert Witness in this trademark case related to the use of the Google+ social network
- Kevin Halpern & Celluride Wireless, Inc. v. Uber Technologies
A case involving materials found on Twitter, Facebook, blogs, YouTube, Vimeo, Tumblr, etc.
- Michael Uzmann v. Mark Nery
A social-media related defamation case involving Yelp
- Cascada, LLC and Denise Dutwiler v. Linda Van Der Starre
A defamation case related to TripAdvisor and Facebook
- Shared Studios v. Facebook
In this case I served as a Social Media Expert Witness defending Facebook against a challenge to its ‘portal’ trademark.