Google settles its seven-year YouTube copyright battle with Viacom

Viacom sued Google and YouTube way back in 2007 for allegedly ignoring copyright infringement, and losing the lawsuit in 2010 was no deterrent -- the media giant won an appeal two years later. However, that longstanding animosity is now water under the bridge: the two companies have just reached a settlement. The companies haven't revealed the terms of their deal, although they say that it reflects a "growing collaborative dialogue" between the two sides. YouTube's gradual shift toward officially sanctioned content no doubt helped, as did a ruling that the site was protected by safe harbor rules so long as it didn't actively contribute to piracy. Whatever the exact motives, Recode hears from a source that no cash traded hands. If true, the tip suggests that Viacom didn't believe compensation would be worthwhile after so many years.