Oracle loses Java copyright lawsuit against Google
Google recently won a lawsuit against Oracle, killing its claim for $9 billion out of the search giant’s Android phone business. This verdict also brings about comfort for the programmers who write programmes across different platforms without buying a licence.
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According to the claim made by Oracle, Google needed to buy a licence for using its Java programming language for development of Android, which is the Android operating system in 80% of the devices around the world.
However, the Jurors in San Francisco federal court rejected that argument on Thursday and concluded that Google made fair use of the code under the copyright law.
The verdict is also a reprieve for the software companies that their method of creating common, interoperable software doesn’t put them in legal jeopardy.
According to Al Hilwa, an analyst with IDC, “A lot of people have sort of breathed a sigh of relief.”
Still, the “ruling should encourage some of those companies that what they are doing is fair and that they will ultimately prevail if sued for copyright infringement,” he added.
“It’s interesting because APIs are still copyrighted,” Duke computer science professor and expert witness for Google, Owen Astrachan says.. “Does every use have to be tried as a fair use case? It’s interesting. Oracle has deep enough pockets where they can go after anybody.”
Google’s legal representatives made ‘bizarre’ analogies to the APIs comparing them to filing cabinets, hamburgers, electrical outlets, steering wheels, and even the Harry Potter series over the period of the trial. It looks like the analogies worked in the company’s favour.
“Maybe the hamburger and the outlet and the steering wheel — I think they must’ve worked,” Astrachan said, adding that after the jury’s decision was announced, “We were joking about going to get hamburgers.”
So what are your thoughts on the verdict? Do let us know in comments down below!