Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 7th May 2012 20:09 UTC
Legal There's some movement in the Oracle-Google lawsuit today, but it's rather difficult to determine just what kind of movement. The jury was told by the judge Alsup to assume APIs are copyrightable - something Alsup still has to determine later during trial - and with that in mind, the judge ruled Google violated Oracle's copyright on Java. However, the jury did not come to an agreement on a rather crucial question: whether or not it was fair use. All in all, a rather meaningless verdict at this point, since it's incomplete. Also, what kind of nonsense is it for a judge to tell a jury to assume something is illegal? Am I the only one who thinks that's just complete insanity?
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Sigh. Thom.
by AdamW on Mon 7th May 2012 20:19 UTC
AdamW
Member since:
2005-07-06

"Also, what kind of nonsense is it for a judge to tell a jury to assume something is illegal? Am I the only one who thinks that's just complete insanity?"

Thom...you really should try and get some vague kind of information before mouthing off on your blog, I'm sorry, serious news site.

It's not nonsense, it's how many legal systems work.

'Whether the APIs are copyrightable' is a question of law. Questions of law are for the judge, not the jury, to decide. Therefore the judge didn't ask the jury that; this is quite correct. 'Whether, if the APIs are copyrightable, Google infringed that copyright' is a question of fact. Questions of fact, not questions of law, are what juries decide, in the American system (and most jury systems).

So the judge asked the jury to answer the question of fact, and will himself answer the question of law. That's exactly how the system is supposed to work. It's not insane at all.

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