Marvin Ammori is the General Counsel of Protocol Labs, a company focused on improving the internet and computing generally. Its projects include IPFS, Filecoin, Coinlist, and others, and investors in those projects include Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, and Union Square Ventures. From 2016-2017, he was general counsel of Virgin Hyperloop One, serving on the senior executive and business leadership team, helping the company to raise $180 million during his time there. Before going in-house, Mr. Ammori was Silicon Valley’s “go-to First Amendment guy,” according to Fast Company. He led the most important, successful, and unlikely political victories determining the Internet’s future, often overcoming “impossible odds” when others saw no path to victory. At that time, he represented Apple, Google, Dropbox, eBay, Automattic, Tumblr, Twitter, and others on their signature policy issues. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan and Harvard Law School.
Recognition: Ammori has been named to Politico 50’s “list of thinkers, doers, and dreamers” who are “transforming politics,” Fast Company Magazine’s “100 Most Creative People in Business,” Washingtonian Magazine’s list of “Tech Titans,” and as one of the top five tech lawyers by the World Technology Network. He has been the subject of front-page profiles in the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and also profiled in the Atlantic and Fortune.
Cases: Mr. Ammori was the key organizational and intellectual force behind the FCC’s Comcast/BitTorrent decision protecting net neutrality in 2008 (Ammori authored the complaint and argued the case before the DC Circuit). Gigi Sohn called the FCC decision the biggest public interest telecom victory in 20 years and Larry Lessig said he had read no government decisions that were “more subtle and sophisticated in their understanding of the Internet.” Ammori helped lead the movement that killed the proposed SOPA bill in 2012 with an “Internet Blackout.” He was the key advocate behind the White House and FCC’s decision to back strong “Title II” rules in 2015. Etsy CEO Chad Dickerson has called him the “net neutrality whisperer”; Tim Wu, who coined the phrase net neutrality, wrote that Ammori “deserves enormous credit for leading the march to Title II”; and Kickstarter’s communications head declared that, “No one deserves more credit for the Net neutrality victory than” Ammori. Reviewing the decade-long fight for net neutrality, Salon’s Matt Stoller wrote, “if there’s one person who really operated with superb strategic insight and tenacity this whole time, it would be superlawyer Marvin Ammori.” U.S. Senator Angus King has said, “I think probably more than anyone in the country he is the father of net neutrality.”
Fellowships and Boards: Ammori has also served as a Future Tense and Schwartz Fellow at New America, one of the nation’s most prominent think tanks, and as a Senior Fellow to the Democracy Fund. He serves on the boards of the nonprofit advocacy groups Fight for the Future, Demand Progress, and Engine Advocacy. He also serves as an Affiliate Scholar of the Stanford Law School Center for Internet & Society. Ammori was a Term Member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a Fellow of the Americas Business Council Foundation. In 2008, he served as an advisor to the Obama campaign and the transition team.
Writings and Talks: Ammori has published articles in the New York Times, USA Today, the Atlantic, Wired, Slate, Forbes, and the Harvard Law Review, and he authored a book On Internet Freedom. He has appeared as an expert on CNN, MSNBC, ABC, NPR, and other TV and radio outlets. Ammori has also keynoted conferences in Germany, Portugal, Brussels, Taiwan; he has spoken at TEDx U-Michigan, three Federalist Society National Lawyer Conventions, and has testified before several government bodies.
He stopped blogging here a few years ago.
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