Mr. Gass has been named to Billboard’s 2021 Top Music Lawyers list which recognizes “[t]he best legal minds in the business,” who have “played an essential role” in the music business in the past year.

Andrew Gass

San Francisco
  • 505 Montgomery Street
  • Suite 2000
  • San Francisco, CA 94111-6538
  • USA

Andrew Gass is an internationally recognized thought leader on emerging issues in copyright law, antitrust law, and the intersection between the two. At Latham & Watkins, he is a founding member of the firm’s Connectivity, Privacy, and Information Practice Group. At the UC Berkeley School of Law, he has taught both the basic Copyright Law course and an advanced seminar on Copyright, Competition & Technology in the nation’s top-ranked IP law program. Mr. Gass regularly serves as lead counsel in high-stakes litigation matters for the leading technology companies in the world. From antitrust suits to infringement actions to rate-setting proceedings, clients turn to Mr. Gass for mission-critical cases.

Numerous publications have recognized Mr. Gass for his cutting edge work in the music industry and beyond. His representation of leading digital platforms has been lauded for its “originality,” “leadership,” and “impact” by the Financial Times, for “saving [clients] millions of dollars." He has been honored by Chambers USA for his “sophisticated representation in complex copyright disputes,” on the basis of client reports that he “provides fantastic counsel and has great real-world instinct.”

Latham’s dedicated copyright practice, which Mr. Gass has led since its inception, has been praised by The Legal 500 and other publications for its assembled collection of “highly intelligent, skilled advocates,” whom clients turn to as “valued counselors.” It has earned a Band 1 ranking from Chambers in the Trademark, Copyright, and Trade Secret category in California.

Individually, Mr. Gass has been honored as a:

  • Top Intellectual Property Lawyer by the Daily Journal
  • Top Music Lawyer by Billboard
  • California Trailblazer by The Recorder
  • Up and Coming Lawyer for Intellectual Property: Trademark, Copyright & Trade Secrets in California by Chambers USA
  • Rising Star competition law attorney by Law360

Class Action Litigation

Mr. Gass has been widely recognized for his work defending Pandora and iHeartMedia in more than a dozen federal court copyright class actions over the use of “pre-1972” sound recordings. He was the architect of a litigation strategy in these matters that the Los Angeles Times called “legal jujitsu,” and remains lead counsel in litigation with hundreds of millions of dollars at stake. His clients have run the table in these cases, including wins in the Georgia Supreme Court, the Northern District of Illinois, and elsewhere. As the Financial Times put it, “[d]efending multiple lawsuits in courtrooms across the US, Mr. Gass has led a revolution in the way the law deals with music copyright and royalties.”

Music Rights Rate Setting

He has extensive experience in music rights rate-setting litigation, and the antitrust actions that often precede them. Mr. Gass has served as lead counsel for:

  • Live Nation in one such case against the music-rights aggregator BMI and for the Radio Music License Committee, or “RMLC,” in a similar suit
  • RMLC in dueling antitrust actions against Global Music Rights
  • Spotify in connection with a number of music-rights rate-setting proceedings and related matters, including the Phonorecords IV litigation before the Copyright Royalty Board

Infringement Actions

Outside the music industry, Mr. Gass has played a key role in many of the most prominent copyright cases of the past five years. Examples include:

  • Representing Apple in connection with a variety of high-profile matters, including Apple v. Corellium (concerning the unauthorized use of Apple’s mobile operating system, iOS), and Cub Club v. Apple (concerning the copyrightability of certain aspects of “emoji”)
  • Arguing the key constitutional issue in Allen v. Cooper (a case about states’ sovereign immunity against infringement claims) in the Fourth Circuit, before the Supreme Court granted certiorari
  • Representing the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts in connection with litigation over the artist’s iconic depictions of the musician Prince, in the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Antitrust Litigation and Investigations

Mr. Gass also has extensive experience in other antitrust litigations and investigations. He successfully represented:

  • Ticketmaster against an antitrust suit brought by StubHub
  • Mozilla in connection with the European Commission’s Google investigation
  • The Digital Media Association and other industry trade groups in connection with the Department of Justice’s recent review of the ASCAP and BMI consent decree

Prior to joining Latham, Mr. Gass served as a law clerk to Judge Stephen F. Williams on the US Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Since that time, he has maintained an active pro bono practice, representing (among others) the nonprofit organization Creative Commons in connection with litigation over the interpretation of its suite of off-the-shelf copyright licenses. Mr. Gass also writes and speaks regularly on issues related to digital platforms, copyright and competition, and novel issues at the intersection of IP and antitrust.

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