The Supreme Court has finally given its verdict, Google wins against Oracle in a long-time legal battle in software development. Stating that the giant tech company Google did not violate copyright contract against Oracle.
Ten years ago, Oracle filed a case against Google over breaching the copyright contracts. Demanding a $9 billion pay for such violation. After a decade’s battle, Google wins against Oracle as decided by the Supreme Court, Brian Fung of CNN reports.
Google was accused of breaching the copyright contracts. When it copied a few bits of Oracle’s coding as it built the Android operating system. Google’s so-called copying of programming language from Oracle’s Java SE was not in violation to copyright contracts. Rather, it was a fair use, as indicated by the 6-2 decision of Judges favoring Google says Justice Stephen Breyer.
On top of resolving the dispute between two tech giants, the decision affirms the fair use of software development. However, the court is silent on the deeper issue whether APIs should be copyrighted. Note that ironically, during the 90s Oracle argued that software APIs should not be included in the copyright law.
Google’s statement over the issue
Google said that the Court’s decision was a victory not just for them but also for consumers, developers, and computer programmers. The verdict provides legal protection for future developers who continually develop new and innovative products that will benefit the end-users.
Google reason out that if Oracle wins, the software industry will be very much affected. As developers are left either to reinvent the wheel every time they want to command computers to do something. Or pay the licensing fees to Oracle for such simple, ordinary tasks.
The contender’s response over Google wins against Oracle
Oracle, on the other end, continues to stand on its statement. Saying that Google has stolen Java and it is using its economic advantage to influence the decision. Google platform has grown so big and its market dominance has continued to increase. That is why regulators are investigating its dominance.
Oracle insists that if Google’s conduct is left free, it could damage the software industry. As it will not be fair for developers that others just freely use what they have worked for. It is disheartening for developers not to be rewarded by their efforts.
Breyer said in a letter to the Court that although copyright law is difficult to apply in the programming environment. Google only copied the needed content for users to use their skills and talent in developing new & innovative programs.
Breyer added that in a world where Oracle can enforce copyright law can potentially harm the public. As it will make Oracle to monopolize the software code needed by other developers. In such a case Oracle will benefit much but at the expense of other developers.
Six judges sided with Google in its case against the copyright infringement filed by Oracle. Two judges disagreed with the majority while one abstained.
The two judges who disagreed to the majority believed that the Oracle’s code can be covered by copyright law. And Google’s usage of that code was in violation of the law, asserted the two judges.