Google has won a lawsuit against the software company Oracle. The search engine company was accused of having built code from the Java programming language into the mobile smartphone operating system Android without permission.
According to CNBC, the subject of the proceedings was around 12,000 lines of code that Google had taken from the Java Application Programming Interface to develop Android. The code was made available by Sun Microsystems, a company that was taken over by Oracle in 2010. Since Oracle is of the opinion that Google could not use the code without a license, the software company filed a lawsuit against the search engine company years ago. A total of nine billion dollars in damages were claimed. Now the case has been dismissed by the US Supreme Court.
Previous Judgment Was Overturned
The judges have thus overturned a previous judgment passed by the subordinate appellate court. However, the decision was not unanimous. While two judges ruled in favour of Oracle, six judges followed Google’s argument. It was thus confirmed that Google did not use the Java interfaces without authorization. So the search engine company doesn’t have to pay Oracle $9 billion.
The legal dispute dragged on for several years and had to be fought across several instances. The judge responsible for the first case had decided that the Java interfaces could not be protected by copyright as a matter of principle. In an appeal, however, this judgment was reversed, so that Oracle was able to achieve an intermediate victory. The Supreme Court overturned this decision.
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