By Travis Baxter, Maginot Moore & Beck LLP
I’m sure all of you have used something on your computer that uses Java code. In fact, until recently, the United States Patent and Trademark Office used Java directly in their e-filing system. I bet a good number of you have Android phones as well. Did you know that Google copied Java code for use in the Android phones and as a result has been in litigation with Oracle (the owner of the Java code) for the past 11 years? In one of the more consequential recent copyright Supreme Court decisions, the court held that Google’s copying of certain portions of the Java code was a fair use of the code, and, as a result, Oracle could not recover on their copyright claim.
What does this mean for the fair use doctrine and the copyrightability of software going forward? Fortunately, Professor Marshall Leaffer of the Indiana University Maurer School of Law has agreed to provide his thoughts on the Google v. Oracle decision in the upcoming IP at the Supreme Court in 2021 seminar hosted by the IndyBar on Sept. 10. Professor Leaffer has written extensively on IP law and more specifically copyright law, including the most recent edition of Understanding Copyright Law. Professor Leaffer will share his vast expertise to help us understand the ramifications of the Google case in copyright law.
In addition, Professor Leaffer will touch on the two patent cases decided by the Supreme Court in the 2020 term: Arthrex v. United States, in which the Supreme Court, in a very fractured decision, found that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board judge appointments violated the Constitution but fashioned a remedy to the statute and Minerva v. Hologic, in which the court upheld but narrowed the doctrine of assignor estoppel.
This seminar will be held at IndyBarHQ in downtown Indy, so if you haven’t checked it out yet, come by for the CLE and to see the space. Alternatively, for those unable to attend in person, the seminar will also be offered as distance education via Zoom. Sign up to attend at indybar.org/events!•