Google is taking the Java copyright case with Oracle to the U.S. Supreme Court in hopes it can get a lower court’s ruling overturned. That ruling gave Oracle the right to copyright portions of the Java programming language which Google heavily uses in its own Android operating system. Android has become the most widely used mobile operating system in the world. Being an open source project, companies like Samsung, HTC, Lenovo, Oppo and LG have all used Android for their mobile devices with some proprietary software over top of it. Oracle is seeking close to $1 billion dollars in its copyright claims.
The original case Oracle brought against Google argued that API’s (application programming interfaces) were creative creations that were subject to copyright protection. Oracle argued that Google’s Android violated 37 of the Java API’s, while Google argued that API’s shouldn’t be considered creative creations and should be part of the open source pool. Early in the case a San Francisco federal judge ruled that Oracle could not copyright API’s but since then the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington disagreed.
In its filing this week, Google said the company would never been able to innovate had the Federal Circuit’s reasoning been in place when the company was formed.
“Early computer companies could have blocked vast amounts of technological development by claiming 95-year copyright monopolies over the basic building blocks of computer design and programming,” Google wrote.
We will continue to keep an eye on this case and bring you any news if the U.S. Supreme Court chooses to take the case in the first place. In case you’re curious the case is filed under Google Inc vs. Oracle America Inc., 14-410.