DOJ Inquires About Java Licensing

Oracle said an inquiry by the United States Department of Justice about the way Java is licensed shouldn’t delay plans to close its $7.4 billion acquisition of Sun Microsystems later this summer.

Dan Wall of Latham & Watkins, Oracle’s outside counsel issued a statement Friday describing its dialog with the DOJ as positive.

"All that's left is one narrow issue about the way rights to Java are licensed that is never going to get in the way of the deal," according to Wall. "I fully expect that the investigation will end soon and not delay the closing of the deal this summer."

Ovum analyst Tony Baer said in an interview that the DOJ’s move is not surprising, given discontent about how Sun oversees the Java Community Process (JCP). "No one was overjoyed about Sun’s leadership of the JCP and it’s not like Oracle engenders a warm and fuzzy feeling either, " Baer said.

"So I think there is natural skepticism and fear uncertainty and doubt in terms of where Oracle will take Java in terms of how it intends to control or not control the process."

While Oracle is restricted by law from providing details prior to the deal closing for its plans with Sun, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison said in a keynote address at this month’s JavaOne conference as reported   that no major changes were planned.

About the Author

Jeffrey Schwartz is editor of Redmond magazine and also covers cloud computing for Virtualization Review's Cloud Report. In addition, he writes the Channeling the Cloud column for Redmond Channel Partner. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreySchwartz.

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