The Supreme Court overturned Oracle’s victory in a lengthy legal battle with Google, TechCrunch reports.
The Background: For years, Google and Oracle have been engaged in a nasty fight over whether the former broke “copyright laws when it incorporated pieces of Oracle’s Java software language into its own mobile operating system.” Google used some of Oracle’s code for Java APIs for its Android OS and the case kicked off a long-running back-and-forth about what constitutes fair “reuse of established APIs and copyright.”
- Around three years ago, a federal appeals court gave the win to Oracle, ruling that Google did violate copyright laws and the APIs, in this case, didn’t qualify under fair use.
Why It Matters: In short, Google would have had to pay Oracle $8 billion as a penalty. But Google is off the hook after a favorable 6-2 ruling from the highest court in the U.S.
In Other News: The court also “vacated a ruling declaring that then-President Donald Trump had violated the First Amendment by clocking critics on Twitter. In his opinion on the case, Justice Clarence Thomas argued that companies like Facebook and Google are ‘at bottom communications networks, and they ‘carry’ information from one user to another’ and can therefore be regulated in the same way as telecom carriers.”
Big Tech Quick Hits:
- LG is dropping its smartphone business globally and focusing on growth areas such as EV parts.
- The National Labor Relations Board ruled the firing of two employees last year was an illegal form of union retaliation by Amazon.
- Spotify has opened up a “second personalized playlist to sponsors, after Discover Weekly in 2019.”
I find this story interesting as someone interested in technology companies, but I don’t think that it’s particularly impactful for either $GOOG or $ORCL stock.