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The full case caption appears at the end of this opinion.

Posner, Circuit Judge. A newspaperpublisher appeals from the denial of itsmotion to unseal a settlement agreementthat had been sealed and deposited in thefederal district court in which themotion was made. The agreement resolved adispute between a former vice presidentof a public college, and the college,concerning the termination of hiscontract of employment. He had sued thecollege in federal district court under42 U.S.C. sec. 1983, charging that thetermination had deprived him of propertyand liberty without due process of law,in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment.The suit was filed in 1997 and thefollowing year settlement discussionswere conducted that a magistrate judgepresided over as authorized to do by alocal rule of the district court. Theparties reached an agreement and embodiedit in a signed document that they gavethe judge. He “approved” the agreement,we are told, but the significance of thisapproval is unclear. He did not embodyhis approval in a judicial order thatwould have made the agreement enforceableby contempt proceedings in the event thateither party violated its terms. Hemerely ordered that the suit be dismissedwith prejudice and that “all documentsrelated to the settlement are to besealed. This will include any documentssubmitted by the parties other than theorder of dismissal.” The publisher intervened, see Jessup v. Luther, 227 F.3d 993(7th Cir. 2000), but, as we have said,its motion to unseal the agreement wasdenied, precipitating this appeal. Thedenial of the motion was a final,appealable order, 28 U.S.C. sec. 1291,for nothing remained pending in thedistrict court after its entry.

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