Daily Crunch: The Supreme Court sides with Google in Oracle suit

The Supreme Court announces several tech-related rulings, LG will shut down its smartphone business and we take a deep dive into the story of StockX. This is your Daily Crunch for April 5, 2021.

The big story: The Supreme Court sides with Google in Oracle suit

The U.S. Supreme Court announced a couple of tech-related rulings today. In one, it overturned Oracle’s victory in its copyright battle with Google, which would have otherwise required Google to pay Oracle $8 billion for incorporating pieces of Oracle’s Java software language into the Android mobile operating system.

“In reviewing that decision, we assume, for argument’s sake, that the material was copyrightable,” wrote Justice Stephen Breyer. “But we hold that the copying here at issue nonetheless constituted a fair use. Hence, Google’s copying did not violate the copyright law.”

In addition, the court vacated a ruling declaring that then-President Donald Trump had violated the First Amendment by clocking critics on Twitter. In his opinion on the case, Justice Clarence Thomas argued that companies like Facebook and Google are “at bottom communications networks, and they ‘carry’ information from one user to another” and can therefore be regulated in the same way as telecom carriers.

The tech giants

LG is shutting down its smartphone business worldwide — LG said it will focus its resources in “growth areas” such as electric vehicle components.

Labor relations board sides with Amazon employees over firing — Before being fired last year, Emily Cunningham and Maren Costa had been among the company’s most outspoken critics on staff.

Spotify opens a second personalized playlist to sponsors, after Discover Weekly in 2019 — On Repeat is now open to advertising sponsorships.

Startups, funding and venture capital

India’s Swiggy nears $5B valuation in new $800M fundraise — Swiggy is preparing to expand its business after cutting its workforce to navigate the pandemic.

Knotel co-founder leaves company, describes investor Newmark as ‘a stalking horse’ — The startup filed for bankruptcy earlier this year, its assets acquired by investor and commercial real estate brokerage Newmark.

Byju’s acquires Indian tutor Aakash for nearly $1B — Akash is a 33-year-old chain of physical coaching centers.

Advice and analysis from Extra Crunch

The StockX EC-1 — Now valued at $2.8 billion, StockX has facilitated over 10 million transactions.

Chinese startups rush to bring alternative protein to people’s plates — 2020 could well have been the dawn of alternative protein in China.

(Extra Crunch is our membership program, which helps founders and startup teams get ahead. You can sign up here.)

Everything else

What happens to your NFTs and crypto assets after you die? — A new study finds that only one in four consumers have someone in their life who knows all of their passwords and account details.

Fueled by pandemic, contactless mobile payments to surpass half of all smartphone users in US by 2025 — According to a recent report by analyst firm eMarketer, in-store mobile payments usage grew 29% last year in the U.S.

Start your engines, TechCrunch is (virtually) headed to Detroit — Mark April 15 on your calendars!

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 3pm Pacific, you can subscribe here.

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