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Google, French News Agency Settle Suit

Agence France-Presse, a global news agency based in Paris, has settled its lawsuit against Google Inc. and will allow the Internet search leader to post news and photos from AFP journalists.

The deal, announced Friday, settles the copyright infringement lawsuit that AFP filed in March 2005 accusing Google of posting news summaries, headlines and photos without permission.

Financial details of the settlement were't disclosed.

The deal will allow Google to use headlines and photos on Google News and other services that drive online traffic to sites displaying AFP news. The companies didn't disclose where else AFP's news would be used by Google.

Google settled a separate dispute with The Associated Press last August. At that time the two companies disclosed a new business relationship under which Google will pay AP for news and photos, but financial details of that arrangement weren't disclosed.

Eric Scherer, AFP's director for strategic planning and partnerships, said the wire service is pleased because "the work of our journalists and photographers will be recognized in a normal way," he said.

"With the other major Internet players like AOL, Yahoo or MSN, we have been licensing our content to them for years and years," he said. "And now Google has agreed to do the same thing, so we are very happy."

Scherer said he could not provide further details.

Representatives for Google did not immediately reply to an e-mail request for further comment on the deal.

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