Editor in Chief
Google and Oracle Ordered to Disclose Which Journalists They Paid for Coverage
Remember that patent wars case that wrapped up a couple of weeks ago between Oracle and Google? Apparently, it isn't completely finished. The judge in that case, William Alsup, has ordered both Google and Oracle to fess up on which bloggers and journalists they paid to influence the media.
In case you missed the drama here is the backdrop on why this is important. During the Oracle v. Google proceedings, several websites found out that Florian Mueller, of the blog FOSS Patents, had been paid by Oracle and Microsoft to write articles regarding the legal proceedings of their cases. What was particularly distressing about this, was that many of his articles seemed to slant in favor of Microsoft or Oracle. Additionally, his work was the source of many reports across the web, which indirectly made other journalists a party to his potential misconduct (we use the word potential because it was never proven that he intentionally skewed his writing, but it was suspect).
Here's a quote from The Verge article with the rest of the details,
That's an interesting and humorous twist to the case, isn't it?
It sounds like whatever is revealed from the court order won't have any immediate bearing: Judge Alsup says it's more important that this information makes it into the case now so that it can be considered for the appeal or a potential remand of the case in the future. Both companies have until noon, Pacific Time, on Friday the 17th to submit their disclosures.
Update: Google tells us that it will be complying with the order.
Update #2: An Oracle spokesperson has provided us with a comment as well — that points a finger squarely at Google:
"Oracle has always disclosed all of its financial relationships in this matter, and it is time for Google to do the same. We read this order to also include indirect payments to entities who, in turn, made comments on behalf of Google."
08-09-2012 11:14 AM