Google's reactions: Nothing is really changing. And why is this a problem now? We briefed you weeks ago.
Reacting to this, Google noted that it "had extensively pre-briefed data protection authorities across the EU prior to the launch of our notification to users on 24 January 2012." In a statement to the EU (PDF), Google notes that its approach to privacy hasn't changed and that its new policy won't affect its users' existing privacy settings. Google also stressed that its users' private information will remain private and that it is not collecting any additional data about them.
Interestingly, Google also notes that its users "can use as much or as little of Google as they want."
Unsurprisingly, Google's reaction to the EU feels a lot like its comments on Microsoft's recent attacks against its policies. There, too, Google argued that it really isn't changing anything about its approach to privacy.