Google v Oracle: judge’s order creates ethical dilemma for tech bloggers

In the dog days of a hot American summer, the tech journalism and blogging community are being made to sweat a little more than usual. Or at least that is the theory, after a judge in a long-running and high-profile patent infringement case between Oracle and Google asked both companies to disclose which writers they pay for consultancy or favourable opinions.It is not exactly clear why the district judge William Alsup decided to order the companies to surrender any names of journalists, bloggers or commentators they might have a financial relationship with who could have commented on the case. But the companies are bound to comply by Friday. The scope of the order is incredibly wide and might therefore even include bloggers who take ads from Google on their blogs. see:Alsup Goes Fishing With Wide Net
When U.S. District Judge William Alsup ordered Oracle Corp., Google Inc. and their counsel to disclose financial relationships with any bloggers, journalists and academics who’ve written about their smartphone megatrial, it set off a raft of questions among technology lawyers:Does Alsup have the power to do that? What prompted him to issue this order on his own motion? And which authors are likely to be exposed as “shills” for the technology titans?

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