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Report: Google nixes new Street Views of Germany

The search giant has discontinued the controversial program in Germany, with "no plans to launch new imagery" from the European country, according to a Search Engine Land report.

Google Street View cars being readied for action in Sao Paulo, Brazil. CC Racum/Flickr

Despite a recent court victory, it appears Google's Street View is retreating from Germany's streets.

In many countries around the world, Google's camera-topped vehicles roam the roadways, capturing street-level images of whatever happens to be in their vision, including staged sword battles, naked men emerging from car trunks, and even dead bodies. But Google now says it has "no plans to launch new imagery on Street View in Germany," according to a Search Engine Land report.

Google did not respond to repeated requests for comment, but a Google representative told the blog that the company's priorities have changed.

The images that have already been published will remain online, but the company has no current plans to update or add to the collection, according to the report.

The program has proved to be unpopular with many governments, especially in Europe, which view the photos as an invasion of privacy. However, a Berlin court ruled last month that it's legal for Google to take the pictures, striking down a lawsuit brought on by a German woman who sued Google over Street View and cited privacy and property rights.

Google Street View launched in Germany last summer with the option for residents to have their homes blurred out, something that was decided upon after extensive negotiations with the German officials who work to enforce the country's tight privacy laws.