Java code in Android ruled fair use (again), Oracle to appeal

What’s said to be billions of dollars will not go to Oracle because of today’s federal jury ruling.

All ten members of the panel agreed that Google’s appropriation of 37 Java APIs in its development of Android fell under the “fair use” clause of copyright law.

Shortly after the verdict, Google stated that:

Today’s verdict that Android makes fair use of Java APIs represents a win for the Android ecosystem, for the Java programming community, and for software developers who rely on open and free programming languages to build innovative consumer products.

Oracle looks to appeal. Oracle’s general counsel Dorian Dailey, said in a statement:

We strongly believe that Google developed Android by illegally copying core Java technology to rush into the mobile device market. Oracle brought this lawsuit to put a stop to Google’s illegal behavior. We believe there are numerous grounds for appeal and we plan to bring this case back to the Federal Circuit on appeal.

The four-year-old case does not look like it has an end yet. This ruling caps off the second trial of the saga — the first one ended in mistrial.

Oracle had argued that Google’s copying of 11,500 lines of code from its Java APIs had rapidly depreciated the value of its licenses to manufacturers like Samsung. Google’s rebuffs were that the Java language was open for repackaging, that Java’s owner Sun had accepted Android as a competing product, but that Oracle — which had acquired Sun in 2010 — also initially accepted Android until the company couldn’t put together a mobile operating system.

Copyright law allows for the protection of APIs but, like any other property, not the fair use of Google.

Source: Ars Technica

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Jules Wang
Jules Wang is News Editor for Pocketnow and one of the hosts of the Pocketnow Weekly Podcast. He came onto the team in 2014 as an intern editing and producing videos and the podcast while he was studying journalism at Emerson College. He graduated the year after and entered into his current position at Pocketnow, full-time.