If you thought the Oracle v. Google saga was over at last, we have some bad news for you. On Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit breathed new life into the case, ruling that Google violated copyright law when it used Oracle’s Java APIs to create the Android mobile operating system. You can read the full ruling here.
The case revolves around a central question: Is a programming language like Java covered by copyright protection? The advent of a third Oracle v. Google trial demonstrates that the far-reaching copyright debate is far from over.
Google has maintained that its use of Java fell under fair use, an argument that a jury agreed with in 2016. Google also won the first round, when Oracle sued the company in 2010. Oracle was previously seeking $9 billion in damages, making the financial stakes just as massive as the implications for the broader software development world.