Fluffeh writes: "The folks that push "Anti-Piracy" and "Copying is Stealing" seem to often request that Google pre-screens content going up on YouTube and of course expect Google to cover the costs. No-one ever really asks the question how much it would cost, but some nicely laid out math by a curious mind points to a pretty hefty figure indeed. Starting with who to employ, their salary expectations and how many people it would take to cover the 72 hours of content uploaded every minute, the numbers start to get pretty large, pretty quickly. US$37 billion a year. Now compare that to Google's revenue for last year."
Fluffeh writes: "The EU has accused Google of abusing its dominant position in advertising to benefit its own advertising services at the expense of competitors. In a twist however, rather than initiating formal proceedings, the EU has given Google a chance to settle the whole matter without much fuss. They outlined four changes that Google can make that will put it firmly back in the good graces of the EU. Google has been given "a matter of weeks" to propose remedies to the four issues — which all tie in with how search results are displayed, their format and their portability to other platforms. This matter has come before the EU based on complaints by a few small companies and Microsoft."
Fluffeh writes: "On Monday, the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles approvedGoogle’s license application to test autonomous vehicles on the state’s roads. The state had approved such laws back in February, and has now begun issuing licenses based on those regulations. The state previously outlined that companies that want to test such vehicles will need an insurance bond of $1 million and must provide detailed outlines of where they plan to test it and under what conditions. Further, the car must have two people in it at all times, with one behind the wheel who can take control of the vehicle if needed. The Autonomous Review Committee of the Nevada DMV is supervising the first licensing procedure and has now approved corresponding plates to go with it, complete with a red background and infinity symbol."
Fluffeh writes: "Hot on the heels of other taxminimisation strategies that have been reported lately, Google Australia seems to have paid a mere $74k on estimates of around a $1 billion dollar income. In its financial statements, Google Australia did not list its activities as being the provision of advertising and software services, both of which it charges Australian customers for. Instead, it noted that it has agreements with its US parent, Google Inc, and a company called Walkway Technologies for the provision of research and development services, and with Google Ireland and Google Asia-Pacific for the provision of sales and marketing services. Consequently, almost all of Google Australia’s revenues were listed as being for services thus rendered to those companies."
Fluffeh writes: "Google has been spending big on lobbying this year, a 240% increase on last year in fact. From January to March of this year, Google spent over $5 million on lobbying, nearly matching its entire 2010 lobbying budget of $5.2 million. Comparing this same rate with 2011 figures, Google would outspend the entire tobacco industry ($17.07 million), the combined spending of JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and Citigroup ($18.67 million), but would be just barely behind the combined budgets of pharmaceutical giants Pfizer and Merck ($20.685 million). For comparison, Apple spent only $500,000 for the same 2012 quarter; Microsoft spent $1.79 million. While some of this has been to get out of trouble with things like that pesky wifi sniffing debarcle, a good part ($4 Million) has been to assist with quashing SOPA and PIPA."
Fluffeh writes: "After around 900 motions and filings, not to mention a timeline of two years, Google and Oracle are finally putting their case before a jury which will be selected on Monday. While Oracle originally sued for billions, the possible damages have come down to a more reasonable US$30-something million (the details vary depending on if you ask Google or Oracle). However, the sides are still far apart. Oracle's proposal was a minimum, not a maximum, and Oracle has asked for a tripling of damages because of the "willful and deliberate nature of Google's infringement." For ongoing royalties from future sales, Google has proposed payment of just over one-half of one percent of revenue if patent infringement is proven, but Oracle wants more. Beyond financial damages, Oracle has asked for a permanent order preventing Google from continuing to infringe the patents and copyrights. The case is planned to start on Monday afternoon, after jury selection or Tuesday at the latest."
Fluffeh writes: "Motorola Mobility has found itself on the receiving end of an antitrust investigation by the European Commission due to its alleged abuse of standards-essential patents related to WiFi, H.264, and 3G wireless networking. The EC investigation comes shortly after it launched a similar investigation of Samsung, which has been attempting to leverage its 3G-related patents against Apple. The investigation could be especially worrisome for Google, which was recently granted approval of its planned merger with Motorola."
Fluffeh writes: "Recently, a Judge ordered Oracle and Google to have yet another sit down and chat, but these talks have come to an impass according to this article. "Despite their diligent efforts and those of their able counsel, the parties have reached an irreconcilable impasse in their settlement discussions," Judge Paul Grewal of US District Court for the Northern California wrote Monday. "No further conferences shall be convened. The parties should instead direct their entire attention to the preparation of their trial presentations.""
Fluffeh writes: "High-level executives at Google and Oracle were ordered to hold one last round of settlement talks no later then April 9th, with the trial over Google's alleged use of Java technology in Android set to begin April 16, although the last-ditch effort to avoid a trial seems unlikely to succeed. Oracle initially accused Google of violating seven patents, but has since dropped most of them. This is due to the US Patent and Trademark Office ruling the patents described technology that was not patentable. Two patents assigned to the Oracle-owned Sun Microsystems remain: #6,061,520 which covers "an improvement over conventional systems for initializing static arrays by reducing the amount of code executed by the virtual machine to statically initialize an array," and #RE38,104 which covers a type of compiler and interpreter."