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Facebook, Yahoo tie up, settle lawsuits: AllthingsD

Fri, 07/06/2012 - 2:07pm
Edwin Chan, Reuters

(Reuters) - Facebook Inc and Yahoo Inc have struck a broad advertising partnership as part of a final settlement of dueling patent lawsuits, technology blog AllThingsDigital cited sources close to the pact as saying on Friday.

Both boards approved a strategic deal that will encompass joint online advertising sales and cross-licensing of key patents. No money will change hands in the deal to be announced later on Friday, it added.

Yahoo sued Facebook in March, claiming the No. 1 social networking company infringed 10 patents including several that cover online advertising technology. In its lawsuit, the company said Facebook was considered "one of the worst performing sites for advertising" prior to adopting Yahoo's ideas.

Facebook, which went public in May, filed a countersuit of its own a month later and called Yahoo short-sighted for its decision to prioritize "litigation over innovation."

Yahoo brought its lawsuit while the company was under the leadership of then-Chief Executive Scott Thompson. Thompson was ousted from the company shortly after the case began, amid questions about his resume.

On Thursday, sources told Reuters that Hulu CEO Jason Kilar and current interim CEO Ross Levinsohn are now in the final running for the top job.

Facebook has been beefing up its patents arsenal. In April, it announced to deal to pay Microsoft Corp $550 million for hundreds of patents that originated with AOL.

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