Thanks to an old-fashioned law that treats ebooks like movies, online booksellers in Germany are eligible for a €50,000/£35,538 fine if they sell erotic ebooks before 10pm. That means any young fraus desperate to buy sensual Clippy stories may have to wait until after dark if booksellers come up with a plan to comply.
After an explicit memoir called Schlauchgelüste (Pantyhose Cravings or, as Google Translate tells it, “Hose Lusts”) provoked a legal complaint over its easy online accessibility, Germany’s Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young Persons (Bundesprüfstelle für jugendgefährdende Medien) is now enforcing a law created in 2002 to protect the youth of Deutschland from the perils of sexy media.
Regulators decided that ebooks fall into the same category as films, which means it’s only legal to sell “adult” ebooks between 10pm and 6am.
It’s not clear exactly how ebook sellers will comply with this law; I’ve asked Amazon how it plans to barricade its sexiest content and will update if I hear back. I checked popular German ebook seller Sofortwelten for Schlauchgelüste and it looks like it’s no longer available—but then again, it was only 8pm in Germany at the time.
This article originally appeared on Factually, Gizmodo's blog for setting the record straight