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Google offers rivals book access

Search engine giant Google has offered rivals access to its huge digital book database, in its latest bid to counter opposition, after a landmark legal settlement with the publishing world. But critics immediately slammed the offer, saying it wouldn’t dent Google’s growing grip on the digital books business. The offer comes ahead of a preliminary decision on whether Google should be allowed to scan millions of books from university research libraries. Rivals Amazon, Microsoft and Yahoo have all criticised Google’s potential monopoly of digital books.