In the midst of its nasty legal battle with Google, Oracle seems to have resorted to a bit of Web site scrubbing.
The database software giant is suing Google for allegedly infringing on its Java patents in the Android mobile operating system. Now, quietly, Oracle has removed all the blog posts of former Sun Chief Executive Jonathan Schwartz from its Web site, including one embarrassing one that praised Google's use of Java in Android. Oracle acquired Sun and its Java programming language in January 2010.
In November 2007, when Google launched Android, Schwartz, a prolific blogger, praised Google's use of Java in a blog post titled "Congratulations Google, Red Hat and the Java Community!"
"I just wanted to add my voice to the chorus of others from Sun in offering my heartfelt congratulations to Google on the announcement of their new Java/Linux phone platform, Android. Congratulations!" Schwartz wrote.
Schwartz also crowed about the momentum Google's use of Java in Android gave to the programming language.
"Google and the Open Handset Alliance just strapped another set of rockets to the community's momentum - and to the vision defining opportunity across our (and other) planets," Schwartz wrote. "Today is an incredible day for the open source community, and a massive endorsement of two of the industry's most prolific free software communities, Java and Linux."
But Web surfers looking for that post will be hard-pressed to find it now. Until recently, the link (http://blogs.sun.com/jonathan/entry/congratulations_google) redirected to Oracle's servers and showed the post in its entirety. But clicking on that link now leads to a "404 Not Found" on Oracle's site.
Of course, nothing ever really disappears from the Web. Using the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, Web surfers can find the post in its original form.
The post isn't just embarrassing for Oracle. Google deemed it damaging enough to Oracle's case that it included the item as an exhibit in its defense. And it noted in a filing listing its various exhibits that the post was available as of March 31, 2011.
It's unclear when Oracle removed the post. And the company didn't respond to e-mail and phone requests seeking comment.
Oracle didn't just remove that one post. It has taken down all of Schwartz's posts.
But it appears that the company has singled out Schwartz's blog. Other blogs written by former Sun employees remain on Oracle's site. Perhaps the most notable one: the ruminations from Java co-creator James Gosling. Gosling left Oracle shortly after it acquired Sun and has referred to Oracle Chief Executive Larry Ellison as "LPOD" or Larry, Prince of Darkness. What's more, Gosling now works for Google.