Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Battle of the Titans

Computer programs are subject to constant new developments, making issues like Copyright infringement a subject matter of pertinence. Presently, Oracle and Google is battling on similar grounds. In August, 2010 Oracle filed a complaint that Google has copied verbatim the literal elements of the API packages in its mobile operating system. API packages form the platform for mobile software development; in this case Google went to the extent of replicating the exact elements of the declaring source code. The issue which was dealt with most was about the non-literal elements of 37 packages out of 166 packages.

Northern District of California decided the case in favor of Google and held that API is not a subject matter of Copyright. The Ninth Circuit in this case endorsed the principle of Abstraction-Filtration-Comparison which was developed in Computer Associates Int. Inc. v. Altai Inc. . Copyright protection cannot be denied for the lines of the declaring code because Sun/Oracle did not provide only a single technique of writing the declaring code. Secondly, those phases used in it are creative and original in terms of selection and arrangement and certain expressions in the programs are subject to copyright protection.

Google filed a petition in the U.S. Supreme Court to the review the decision of the subordinate court on 6th October, 2014. Thus, a lot is at stake in terms of money, reputation which will be depending on the Supreme Court.

-Shambhavi Mishra