The patent lawsuit between Google and Oracle’s over the use of Java in Android was, for all intents and purposes, won by Google. There are still a few loose ends for the judge in the suit, William Alsup, to take care of before the case is officially wrapped up. Today, Alsup cause a significant stir when he issued a surprising order demanding that Google and Oracle disclose if either company paid bloggers or journalists covering the trial.
The trial between Google and Oracle was a bitter affair. Both sides pitched emotional battles full of technical explanations and claims of significant damage. In the end, Google came out almost completely clean with only a couple rulings of copyright infringement against it.
Oracle brought the case against Google to defend its patents and the use of the Java programming language in Google’s Android mobile operating system. Oracle claimed copyright infringement on the structure, sequence and organization (SSO) of Java in Android as well as violation of several technical patents. The jury determined Google had indeed copied the SSO of Java but was unable to determine if it was fair use or not. If Google’s use of Java was fair, then Google would not owe Oracle a cent in damages. After the jury was hung, Alsup made the ruling the Google’s use of Java API’s were indeed fair use.
Today, Alsup released an order to both parties demanding to know if either paid bloggers and journalists during the proceedings. If either company did pay media in hopes of influencing the decisions, it would come as a major scandal both for the reporters involved as well as Google and Oracle. Alsup cited that the information would be useful in the appeals process even though it had little bearing on the verdict of the trial that has already passed.
The full release order from Judge Alsup is below.
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