Mike Fuller stands at a podium arguing in a courtroom

Seattle Times: David vs. Goliath: Small Publishers’ Battle Against Facebook and Google

Newspaper lawsuits against Google and Facebook may result in astonishing payouts, but that still won’t be enough to sustain the local free press system.

A lawyer involved in the first of these lawsuits told me damages could exceed that of a massive opioid case his firm helped lead, which resulted in a $26 billion settlement offer in November.

That’s among the surprising details Michael Fuller shared in a recent interview.

“We’re not fighting for the freedom of the press, we’re fighting to keep the press alive,” lawyer Michael Fuller said.

Mike Fuller

Fuller and partner Paul Farrell represent HD Media, a Huntington, West Virginia-based newspaper company that publishes Huntington’s Herald-Dispatch, The Charleston Gazette-Mail and weekly newspapers in the region.

They filed an antitrust case against Google and Facebook in January, leaning on a searing House antitrust investigation released in October. It documented anti-competitive behavior by dominant digital platforms and concluded that their market power “has contributed to the decline of trustworthy sources of news.”

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