55(11) Communications of the ACM, 2012
3 Pages Posted: 5 Nov 2012
Date Written: November 2012
Are application program interfaces (APIs) of computer programs protectable by copyrights in software that embodies them? Oracle v. Google is the most definitive ruling yet that addresses this question. The judge rejected Oracle's claim of copyright and his ruling suggests that APIs are uncopyrightable more generally. Oracle will appeal, but Judge William Alsup of the U.S. District Court of Northern California did a very careful job in analyzing the issues. I predict affirmance.
Keywords: Oracle, Google, API, Copyright
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Samuelson, Pamela, Oracle v. Google: Are APIs Copyrightable? (November 2012). 55(11) Communications of the ACM, 2012; UC Berkeley Public Law Research Paper No. 2171447. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2171447
By Mark Lemley