Legal

Oracle Says It Backs Groups Taking On Big Tech Rivals

Oracle is among the backers of the IAP, which is fighting for tougher regulations on internet giants.

Oracle is among the donors of the Internet Accountability Project (IAP), which aims to fight against the dominance of Big Tech. California-based Oracle donated between $25,000 and $99,999 to the project last year, according to a new political giving report posted on the company's website this week, Bloomberg reported.

Previously, the IAP declined to say who was funding it. The IAP is a conservative group lending its voice to the growing calls for tougher privacy rules and stronger regulation against Big Tech companies.

By funding IAP, Oracle is continuing its aggressive — though somewhat private — battle against rivals in the tech sector, such as Amazon and Google. The company spent years trying to take the front-runner spot from Amazon, as it vied for a coveted Pentagram cloud contract, which ended up going to Microsoft last October.

Oracle has also been involved in ongoing legal strife with Google, claiming that the search engine giant stole some of its patents when it included Java programming in the code for the Android phone. Oracle had acquired Java's developer Sun Microsystems in 2010.

IAP filed an amicus brief supporting Oracle in that case earlier this month, saying it wanted to ensure that Google respected the copyrights of inventors such as Oracle. The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in the case, called Google vs. Oracle America, on March 24.

On Feb. 19, the Trump administration urged the Supreme Court to reject Google's appeal in the case. The brief appeared the same day that Larry Ellison, co-founder and chair of Oracle, hosted a fundraiser for President Trump at Ellison's Rancho Mirage estate. That event prompted 300 Oracle employees to stage a protest the next day. However, the U.S. has supported Oracle prior to Trump's elections, as the case went through the courts.

Oracle and Google have both donated to groups that filed briefs in the case.

IAP President Mike Davis said the nonprofit usually does not disclose financiers, but clarified that IAP had not been funded by Oracle in its own Supreme Court brief.

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