Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Oracle has amended its complaint against Google to include copyright claims, saying that Google "directly copied" code from Java's API packages. The claims are getting a bit more sympathy for Oracle, since many folks regard software patents as a nuisance, but plagiarism has no friends. But not so fast — there's much more here than it seems.
The problem is that most of the people who are looking at the "line by line" example don't actually understand code. SCO did this, through the same legal team (Boies Schiller) with its claims that Linux had direct copied code from UnixWare. That was debunked pretty quickly. The only thing missing here is Larry Ellison running around issuing open letters or ranting about Google to anyone who will listen. Never let it be said that Ellison isn't classier than Darl McBride.
Boies Schiller has roped in some tech journalists with the same song and dance that it used to sway Linux critics in 2002 and 2003. Until they started realizing that the copying claims were boilerplate code and other pieces that really don't indicate copying so much as standard ways to do things. It's like looking at two Web pages and saying "they must have copied this.