The Strategist

Google wins multi-year copyright lawsuit against Oracle

04/06/2021 - 04:27

The US Supreme Court has ruled that Google did not infringe the copyright of another US company, Oracle. This decision ends a long-running legal battle between Google and Oracle over this issue.

Oracle sued Oracle back in 2010 charging that Google infringed its copyrights by using Java programming language in Android operating system. The lawsuit was filed shortly after Oracle bought Java developer Sun Microsystems. 

In the lawsuit, Oracle claimed that the free distribution of the Android OS infringed Oracle's copyright in some of the Java software, which reduced its revenue. According to Oracle, Google copied more than 11,000 lines of Java API (application programming interfaces) code in Android. Oracle demanded $9 billion in compensation from Google.

During almost 11 years of the litigation several court decisions were made. Now the Supreme Court has overturned a lower court ruling in favour of Oracle, stating that Google's copying of some Java API codes was fair use. Oracle said after the ruling that in its view "Google stole Java and has been litigating for a decade in a way that only a monopolist can do".