Robert Pogson

One man, closing all the windows.

Oracle’s Position is Worse Than I Thought

  • Mar 29 / 2012
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technology

Oracle’s Position is Worse Than I Thought

I was thinking that Oracle’s claims in Oracle v Google were bottoming out at a few tens of $millions. It turns out to be worse than that. In the pre-trial meeting, Google made a reasonable offer that amounts to just a few $million to settle damages for the patent-violations if any.

“The ’104 patent currently stands rejected bythe PTO, and will expire on December 22, 2012. The ’520 patent is worth very little—only $80,000 through 2011 according to Dr. Kearl before adjusting for failure to mark and non-accused devices, and $50,000 according to Dr. Cockburn after those adjustments—and Oracle’sown engineers ranked that patent in the middle of the pack of 569 Java-related patents owned byOracle.”

What’s that amount to, half a day in court?

“Google proposes that the parties waive their rights to a jury trial. Because there are only two patents remaining in the case, and because Oracle’s expert believes that a reasonable royalty for those patents is only $4.15 million, the primary issues remaining in the case involve the copyrightability of the Java API specifications, fair use, and Google’s equitable defenses. As indicated in the recent copyright briefing, both parties agree that copyrightability and Google’s equitable defenses are questions for the Court, not a jury. Because these issues are for the Court, Google is willing to waive its right to a jury trial in order to avoid unnecessarily burdening jurors with sitting through a lengthy trial in which they will not be responsible for deciding the most important questions. A bench trial would also save time for the Court.”

I guess Oracle is hoping it can somehow snow the jury…

Oracle, sticking to what little claim it has left, declines the offer and is going for broke. Broke it will be then.

I expect Judge Alsup will give the two sides another fatherly talk and suggest they shake hands and skip the trial. There’s just so little left in it for Oracle. The trial will be an embarrassment of foolish spending to advertise foolish management’s delusions of grandeur.

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