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Germany Opposes Google Book Deal

Already facing an investigation from the Department of Justice, opposition from Microsoft and Yahoo! and piquing the interest of the European Union, Google could now be up against the German government. Reuters cites a court filing from the German government as saying the deal violates copyright law and the country's privacy protections for Internet users.

In a filing dated Monday, Germany opposed the settlement because, under the terms of the agreement, Google could digitize books by German authors without their consent. Johannes Christian Wichard, deputy director general of the Directorate Commercial and Economic Law in Germany's Justice Ministry, said the deal would allow Google to "flout German laws that have been established to protect German authors and publishers, including with respect to digital copying, publishing and the dissemination of their works."

"The decision of this court with respect to this settlement will have the dramatic and long-range effect of creating a new worldwide copyright regime without any input from those who will be greatly impacted -- German authors, publishers and digital libraries and German citizens," he said, noting that German authors not published in the United States were not represented by the Authors Guild.

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