Google and Oracle have been fighting in court for years to claim that the Android mobile operating system violates Oracle’s copyright. Back in 2019, the United States Supreme Court agreed to hear Google’s appeal against a federal appeals court ruling that Android infringed Oracle’s copyright by using unlicensed Java code, and today the court has issued a ruling. The Supreme Court just ruled 6-2 in favor of Google, a decision that should overturn the earlier decision.
The ruling’s introduction states that “Google’s copy of the Java SE API, which included only the lines of code necessary to enable programmers to put their learned skills to work for a new and transformative program, was fair use of this material. as a matter of law. “
This back and forth has been going on for years. Originally, a jury ruled in favor of Google, saying its use of Java code was considered “fair use.” But in 2018, the Federal Court of Appeal overturned that decision, decision that Google did in fact violate Oracle’s marks; the ruling would have referred the case to a California court to determine how much Google Alphabet’s parent company would be indebted to Oracle. But the Supreme Court has decided to hear Google’s appeal, and now it looks like it may finally exhaust Oracle’s avenues for compensation for this legal battle. The Supreme Court had previously decided not to weigh in on the case, but it was back in 2015.
We are reaching out to Google and Oracle for comment and will update this story if we hear anything.