Google won a high-profile jury verdict Thursday that its use of Oracle’s copyrighted Java software code in its Android mobile operating system was protected by the fair use doctrine, clearing the company of liability that could have reached $8.8 billion.
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This is a HUGE win for Google and a big win for the Fair Use doctrine. This case is sure to be appealed. Incidentally, it will go to the Federal Circuit rather than the 9th Circuit, because the case once involved patents. The Federal Circuit will apply 9th Circuit law, however, in deciding the copyright issues. This case ain’t over… but Google’s lawyers are having one heck of a party tonight.