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Google Oracle Android Chrome Java The Courts

Oracle Says Trial Wasn't Fair, It Should Have Known About Google Play For Chrome (arstechnica.com) 182

Two and a half months after a federal jury concluded that Google's Android operating system does not infringe Oracle-owned copyrights because its re-implementation of 37 Java APIs is protected by "fair use," Oracle's attorney says her client missed a crucial detail in the trial, adding that this detail could change everything. ArsTechnica reports: Oracle lawyers argued in federal court today that their copyright trial loss against Google should be thrown out because they were denied key evidence in discovery. Oracle attorney Annette Hurst said that the launch of Google Play on Chrome OS, which happened in the middle of the trial, showed that Google was trying to break into the market for Java SE on desktops. In her view, that move dramatically changes the amount of market harm that Oracle experienced, and the evidence should have been shared with the jury. "This is a game-changer," Hurst told U.S. District Judge William Alsup, who oversaw the trial. "The whole foundation for their case is gone. [Android] isn't 'transformative'; it's on desktops and laptops." Google argued that its use of Java APIs was "fair use" for several reasons, including the fact that Android, which was built for smartphones, didn't compete with Java SE, which is used on desktops and laptops. During the post-trial hearing today, Hurst argued that it's clear that Google intends to use Android smartphones as a "leading wedge" and has plans to "suck in the entire Java SE market. [...] Android is doing this using Java code," said Hurst. "That's outrageous, under copyright law. This verdict is tainted by the jury's inability to hear this evidence. Viewing the smartphone in isolation is a Google-gerrymandered story."In the meanwhile, Google attorney said Oracle was aware of Google's intentions of porting Android to laptops and desktops, and that if Oracle wanted to use this piece of information, it could have.
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Oracle Says Trial Wasn't Fair, It Should Have Known About Google Play For Chrome

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  • No tears (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    No tears for Oracle
    • Imagine if Oracle wrote a mobile phone operating system! I can only imagine the trailer you'd need to carry it around in and if you think current mobile operaters are expensive wait until you see an Oracle Mobile Phone Licensing agreement.
    • Dumb Ass lawyers couldn't present it as evidence? Amazing. But the one thing that amazes me most of all is the suing for using an API?! That is indeed a slippery slope, Oracle.
  • $23 (Score:5, Funny)

    by Austerity Empowers ( 669817 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @06:44PM (#52722243)

    Here [amazon.com] is the smallest violin I could find on short notice. Hopefully if enough of us play, it will drown out Oracle's wailing.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Doesn't Oracle sound a lot like SCO? Only with deep pockets, not that has helped them.

      "I have this extremely tenuous legal argument. You touched something of mine, now give me all your money and pay a tithe on all future work you do. It's all mine."
      "I lost because you cheated. Now give me everything I want. It's all mine."

      I can't see any of this getting any traction but then again I am not a lawyer.

      • Re:$23 (Score:4, Insightful)

        by BarbaraHudson ( 3785311 ) <barbarahudson@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @08:22PM (#52722741) Journal

        Pretty stupid because Android phones don't run any version of Java, and even if they were going after Java ME's market, there's nothing wrong with going after someone else's market. Agreements not to do so are illegal because they are anti-trust violations. Besides, Java ME was not for the desktop market, that was Java SE.

        Now if you want to run Java on, say, a Chromebook, you have to actually install Java, as described here [meetchrome.com], and it will run Java for linux.

        This is just lawyers running the meter.

        • even if they were going after Java ME's market, there's nothing wrong with going after someone else's market.

          Oh My God, how dare you suggest such an un-American, anti-competitive thing like going after someone else's market! Is nothing sacred?

          Some big company needs to sue you ASAP for such blasphemy!!

        • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

          Android phones?, I certainly hope that Oracle's silly lawyers are not going to claim these a pocket devices https://www.sony.com.au/bravia... [sony.com.au], unless they can show proof of giants with big enough pockets and Android TVs have been around for a while and most definitely are all in one desktop computers. For the majority of the consumer market, the combination of big screen all in one computer and tablet will replace the desktop computer (so technically Linux, Android is a Linux distribution, will beat out M$

        • Pretty stupid because Android phones don't run any version of Java

          I think that's a big part of their complaint. Sun and Oracle have given a patent and copyright grant for all of their Java-related IP to all fully conforming Java implementations. Android provides a non-conforming Java implementation (for example, attempting to install a SecurityManager on Android throws an exception, so you can't do fine-grained privilege separation in Google's version). This significantly decreases the value of the Java platform, because now you have to target Java and Google-Java as s

          • Re:$23 (Score:5, Informative)

            by jabuzz ( 182671 ) on Thursday August 18, 2016 @05:21AM (#52724055) Homepage

            The difference is that Microsoft took the Sun Java implementation and modified which broke the terms of the license they had from Sun for access to the source code.

            Google just looked at the specification for the Java language, wrote their own compiler which produced a completely different bytecode (its register based as opposed to the stack based byte code of Java) and then wrote a virtual machine for that bytecode. Later they ditched the virtual machine and now compile the byetcode to native machine code when you install the application.

          • But, SUN lost their case - just as Oracle effectively lost this one.
            They were however a victim in a separate, criminal case by the DOJ - but that was for a totally unrelated crime (antitrust violations).

            Now the question becomes - is google perhaps guilty of antitrust violations ? That's actually trickier - since that law is not so straightforward, the exact same behaviour in one context could violate it and in another comply with it. It's only an antitrust violation if the actions decrease competiti

          • I think that's a big part of their complaint. Sun and Oracle have given a patent and copyright grant for all of their Java-related IP to all fully conforming Java implementations.

            Google isn't using Oracle's IP. They reimplemented the APIs. Now Oracle is claiming that the APIs are protected, and we've just seen that they aren't.

            • Google isn't using Oracle's IP

              This is repeated a lot in this thread, yet Google's own testimony indicates that they copied around 11,000 lines of code from Sun, that they knew that they needed a license, and attempted to negotiate one. The ruling was in their favour because the judge asked the jury to rule on whether their copyright infringement was fair use and the jury ruled that it was.

              The previous ruling already establishes that Google did use Sun/Oracle's IP, but that this use specifically in the context of smartphones constitu

      • by DrXym ( 126579 )
        Oracle is just throwing money at this because it knows if some sticks it might get a huge payout and sink its claws into Android. Cynics might even think that the only reason they bought Sun in the first place was to acquire Java and sue Google for this opportunity.

        Sadly for them it seems Google have been very careful about what they did, and Oracle are basically scraping the bottom of the barrel. The whole nonsense with SCO demonstrates that it could take a while yet before they give up.

    • by Dwedit ( 232252 )

      You need THIS [youtube.com] one...

    • This one is smaller, and a few bucks cheaper:

      Odoria 1:12 Violin [amazon.com]

      Approx.Size: 0.78"(L) x0.5"(W) x2.7"(H)

    • Re:$23 (Score:5, Informative)

      by phantomfive ( 622387 ) on Thursday August 18, 2016 @01:53AM (#52723675) Journal
      It was a beautiful day in court if you like courtroom drama. Some of the dialogue:

      [Oracle attorney]Hurst throws her hands up. "It’s a fraud on the jury! It’s a mockery of the system!"

      Google attorney responded by saying that Oracle already tried to bring ARC and other products into it, and that the court struck testimony about these products, because this limited retrial was frozen in time, looking at what was available in 2012.

      Judge ALSUP to Google: "Do you concede that Oracle is entitled to bring a new lawsuit against any new product that was not in the first trial?"

      Google: "YES"

      ORACLE: "We certainly can sue, but that’s not why this verdict should be set aside."

      later

      (Flashback: key argument in the case was that Android did not compete with Java SE because it was not for desktop.)
      Hurst throws up arms again and starts shouting, "This is outrageous! They’re lying to the jury!" (because Android on Chromebooks)

      Judge ALSUP [trolling]: "We already said we’re going to have another trial on all of those other products."

      Judge ALSUP: "Do you know how many Social Security claimants I can't rule on right now because you're arguing over a cost bill?"

      source [twitter.com]
    • Here [amazon.com] is the smallest violin I could find on short notice. Hopefully if enough of us play, it will drown out Oracle's wailing.

      That's for display purposes you can't play it. Here's the smallest functioning one I could find https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

  • by BenJeremy ( 181303 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @07:00PM (#52722331)

    ...facts in a case.

    Fair use is fair use. It has nothing to do with competing. The lawyer is confusing that with trademark law, and probably should be disbarred for being either completely obtuse and ignorant of the law she claims to know, or disbarred for being a majorly disingenuous douchebag and outright lying.

    • by Dutch Gun ( 899105 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @07:38PM (#52722549)

      or disbarred for being a majorly disingenuous douchebag and outright lying.

      So, she should be disbarred for being a lawyer?

      • It's not a bad reason.

        In this case, however, for being too much of a lawyer.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          I wouldn't blame the lawyer in this case, it's more of a case of company culture...

          Oracle is known to be highly litigious and they are known to leverage these legal tools even when it's disingenuous if it might improve the bottom line. I have no doubt they are even rewarding this behaviour to encourage it further.

    • Fair use is fair use. It has nothing to do with competing.

      This page [wikipedia.org] and this page [stanford.edu] seem to disagree.

      The lawyer is confusing that with trademark law, and probably should be disbarred for being either completely obtuse and ignorant of the law she claims to know, or disbarred for being a majorly disingenuous douchebag and outright lying.

      Somebody is confused, but I don't think it's that lawyer.

  • Nah (Score:5, Informative)

    by Njorthbiatr ( 3776975 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @07:01PM (#52722337)

    You should be paying Google for keeping Java alive and interest in it high. If anything they make you money. A lot of it.

    So go fuck yourself Oracle. You and your dying platform.

    • Re:Nah (Score:5, Interesting)

      by aralin ( 107264 ) on Thursday August 18, 2016 @05:52AM (#52724113)

      I don't think you quite understand this case. Oracle is trying to utterly and thoroughly to lose this case, but to litigate it in every single possible angle. They are trying to do the same thing Google did to them to Amazon in the Cloud and they want to make sure that there is an ironclad precedent. Oracle even hired a team of former Amazon people to do a reimplementation of AWS API for them.

      This case is not about Java at all. In fact it is going to hugely benefit both Oracle and Google. But oh well, keep your emotions high if you like.

  • by JMZero ( 449047 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @07:02PM (#52722345) Homepage

    ..without Java, easily, and I'm sure now they wish they had. They've learned their lesson, and everyone should learn the same lesson from this case: "avoid Oracle, avoid Java".

    Oracle is a snake that will bite you as soon as it feels hungry or threatened in any way. Java is no longer a free standard with tools that'll bootstrap your project and help you inter-operate, now it's a Trojan horse that could spill open and burn your business, or at very least can be yanked out from under you at any time (if you aren't willing to pay up or hire good lawyers).

    • by a_n_d_e_r_s ( 136412 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @07:48PM (#52722589) Homepage Journal

      Oracle did not own Java when Google made android. Oracle bought Java later.

      Old owner of Java - Sun - had no problem with google.

      So problems are with proprietary software. New owners - new rules - new problems.

      • I had a similar thought: did Google decide to use Java as the programming language for Android, or did AOSP make that decision before Google was involved?
        • by Dog-Cow ( 21281 )

          Google created AOSP. I think you meant to ask if the original creator of Android chose Java before Google was involved.

    • This is very much the case, given the fact that all Android devices run on the same family of processor. One of the key points of Java, the VM, is binary executable portability, which isn't even an issue for Android at all. Google could have just created a standard compiler for Java (the language) to produce ARM assembly if they were so in love with that particular language. Or pulled an Apple and used some obscure (at the time) language like Objective-C. Or they could have just used... gasp... C++. Or

    • The reason they didn't was because they felt they were on a timer......they had to beat Microsoft to market with a reasonable system. I think they would have been fine with a C based system, but a lot of people disagree.
  • Trying to argue that Chrome isn't trans-formative when compared to Java SE is so ridiculous its almost funny. You can only run litigious business like Oracle based on making everyone else pay a protection racket for so long.

  • TIL that there is a "entire Java SE market"
  • I didn't know JavaSE supported the ChromeOS platform. You learn something new every day /sarcasm
  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @07:16PM (#52722403)

    "Our running back fumbled, and he really wasn't supposed to, could we repeat the down?"

  • Incompetent counsel (Score:5, Informative)

    by tomhath ( 637240 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @07:21PM (#52722433)

    Oracle is claiming their lawyer was so incompetent that the wrong verdict was reached.

    So now the judge is supposed to believe that same lawyer when she suggests that Oracle should have a new trial.

    Sure.

    • by hey! ( 33014 )

      Oh, their argument is nowhere so coherent.

    • Oracle is claiming their lawyer was so incompetent that the wrong verdict was reached.

      So now the judge is supposed to believe that same lawyer when she suggests that Oracle should have a new trial.

      Sure.

      Not exactly, but you're kind of close. Oracle is claiming that Google failed to give them critical information in discovery and that this information would have led to a completely different verdict. There may or may not be a subtle implication that their own lawyer was at fault for not figuring this out sooner or they may be saying that Google simply hid stuff from them. I don't care enough to read the docs to try to figure it out as best I can as a non-lawyer. Sometimes legal documents use negative la

  • Sue, sue, sue.. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by h8sg8s ( 559966 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @07:48PM (#52722591)

    Larry would rather sue for imagined damages than compete in the market. Lawyers are better bang/buck than engineers, at least in his thinking.

    • by Strider- ( 39683 )

      He needs to finance his next America's Cup yacht somehow...

    • by Myria ( 562655 )

      Larry would rather sue for imagined damages than compete in the market. Lawyers are better bang/buck than engineers, at least in his thinking.

      That's the thing...they usually are.

  • Oracle needs grounds for an appeal. I'm happy they're having to stretch this far to find some. Pity that they could find any...

  • And she got nothing but sour grapes
  • by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @08:17PM (#52722717) Journal

    Google should purchase the PostgreSql organization, improve the database's compatibility with Oracle, improve the documentation, and stick links to it everywhere. If anybody googles with "Oracle" in the search phrase, include a link to PostgreSql in their ads.

    • For the love of God, please don't. That way we would end up with ads in our query results, and three years down the line it gets discontinued without warning.

      Besides, they could simply translate 'oracle' into 'postgresql' in all web searches without messing PostgreSQL up. May be hard on the people trying to learn about the PostgreSQL of Delphi, but for the rest I don't see much of a problem.

    • by aralin ( 107264 )

      EnterpriseDB already makes compatibility layer for Oracle over PostgreSQL. Paradoxically it helps Oracle, because as soon as EnterpriseDB stops scaling, it is easily replaced by Oracle Cluster.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    When people sue each other (or another corporation), the laws give a certain amount of leeway because they're not lawyers, and people don't have the resources to understand the details of contracts or law.

    But large multi-billion dollar corporations don't get that "courtesy". They spend millions on lawyers to understand what they want to present to the judge and/or jury, and if they forgot something, tough luck.

    Oracle is failing. Nobody buys Oracle anymore unless they must, not because it's best. Relat

    • The Judge should've jailed all their C-level executives under the ancient English common law principal that there is no crime more heinous than unleashing really crappy installers and flaky database drivers upon an innocent world.

  • "Scott McNealy, former CEO of Sun Microsystems (JAVA), met me for breakfast at an unassuming little restaurant in a strip mall tucked into the woods a few minutes’ drive from his house. We discussed one of his recent passions: applying technology’s open-source model to education. Sun was an early proponent of open source, giving the concept a huge boost when it opened up its Java software. And McNealy funded and helped promote a project called Curriki to create open-source textbooks that will ul
  • by XSportSeeker ( 4641865 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @11:19PM (#52723339)

    Are we to expect whinning everytime Google uses Android for something good now?

    And are you really complaining that Android for Chrome OS of all things is trying to compete with Java SE? HA! Man, what a joke.

    Your famously insecure platform that you kept spending money to falsely advertise as secure, while not patching it as you should, to the point you had to be sued by the FTC to come clean about it?

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2... [theregister.co.uk]

    Fuck you Oracle. Even if your case had any hint of truth to it, you have no right to complain.
    There is nothing better for the public than competition to a company as irresponsible as yours.

    I wanna see they going back to the courts to get owned once again... pretty clear that there are some delusional people in charge of the legal team there.

  • "Oracle's attorney says her client missed a crucial detail in the trial, adding that this detail could change everything. ArsTechnica reports"

    Yeah, well, unless I'm misreading this whole thing, that sounds like a screwup by Oracle or their attorneys and not something Google can be held accountable for.

    "Your Honor, we fucked up, so errr, we need a do-over, yeah, that's the ticket!"

    • Yeah, well, unless I'm misreading this whole thing, that sounds like a screwup by Oracle or their attorneys and not something Google can be held accountable for.

      Their argument is that Google should have given that info to them during discovery.

      • Their argument is that Google should have given that info to them during discovery.

        The counter-argument is that Oracle was fully aware of their actions, and that they are not required to tell them that air contains oxygen or that water is wet, either.

        • The counter-argument is that Oracle was fully aware of their actions, and that they are not required to tell them that air contains oxygen or that water is wet, either.

          That's not the counter-argument, that's some BS you just made up. There was a counter-argument, and it's rather entertaining.

  • by Rexdude ( 747457 ) on Thursday August 18, 2016 @12:06AM (#52723453)

    Google was trying to break into the market for Java SE on desktops

    What 'market for Java SE on the desktop'? Applets were dead in the water after Flash was launched...some 18-20 years ago. Java has only ever been used to run application servers since then, there is no killer app for the desktop that had people wilfully downloading the JRE in droves. Alternately, I'd love for Oracle to point me to the humungous list of Java based desktop applications that Android is supposedly taking over.

    • Well, there was a few years ago: Minecraft. Dunno what Minecraft runs on these days but back then is was a bog-standard Java app.
  • First SCO, the Lawsuit-That-Never-Dies, and now this: Oracle trying to turn Oracle vs Google into another one. The disease is spreading, infecting the minds of greedy businessmen and tech lawyers. The number of people susceptible is that large, and they have masses of resources at their disposal to accelerate the spread of the ObsessiveCompulsiveLaunchATechZombieLawsuitThatNeverDies disease. Run for your lives! Were all doomed! Doomed, I tell you! Doomed!

  • by haapi ( 16700 )

    Some things age well, such as this: http://ars.userfriendly.org/ca... [userfriendly.org]

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