Google and Oracle have been in legal disputes for more than ten years, since shortly after Oracle acquired Sun Microsystems, developer of the Java programming language, in 2010, they reported that Google had infringed their copyrights by using 37 JAVA APIs in the Android operating system, considering that this entitled them to have a portion of the revenue from the Android operating system business as well as an additional sum for the revenue potentially lost from the licenses.
Some time later, in 2016, a jury found that Google had legitimately used the structure, sequence and organization of the Java APIs in the Android operating system, although the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed the decision in the year. 2018 in favor of Oracle, which made Google have to move, for which in 2019 it asked the Supreme Court to review the entire process.
A victory that saves the computer industry from an avalanche of complaints
And after a hearing that is several months late, since it was scheduled for the beginning of last fall season, the Supreme Court now agrees with Google by ruling that Google’s copy of the API to re-implement a user interface. user, taking only what was needed to allow users to put their accumulated talents to work in a new and transformative program, constituted a fair use of that material.
It so happens that in the 1990s, both Oracle and Sun were infringing on copyrights in software APIs. This resolution, passed by majority 6-2, not only nullifies the previous decision, but also prevents the possible flood of copyright lawsuits for the use of software APIs throughout the computer industry, Google believes.
But Google has not been alone in the whole process, since it has had the support of various companies and organizations, for which they also stepped up by providing their own reports supporting those of Mountain View.
Therefore, today’s decision declares legitimate the use of Java APIs in the Android operating system by Google, also avoiding the avalanche of lawsuits in the entire sector of the computer industry, which also allows it to be followed innovating in the sector.