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Google celebrates many holidays with pizazz by presenting a themed logo. On Memorial Day Google has not opted to provide a themed logo as long as I can remember, yet as Search Engine Journal depicted today many of the other search engines do a decent job of theming their logos.

So what is it with Google? Obviously no one in their right mind would have any problem with honoring active members, veterans and resting military personnel.

A soldier in full battle gear kneeling in respect
Photo Credit: I am afraid I found no attribution for the above photo on the website I found it on… if you know who took this please let me know as they should have proper credit for this amazing shot.

I decided to look into Google’s explanation of their behaviour and found a forum post that claims to have a reply from Google on the subject; it certainly sounds like a Google reply to me.

From a forum post dated May 29th, 2006.

I sent an email to google asking them about this issue. Here is the answer they sent me:

Thank you for your note. We understand your interest in seeing a Memorial Day Google logo. If we were to commemorate this holiday, we’d want to express reverence; however, as Google’s special logos tend to be lighthearted in nature, this would be a particularly challenging design.
We wouldn’t want to create a graphic that could be interpreted as disrespectful in any way.

We have a long list of holidays that we’d like to celebrate in the future. We have to balance this rotating calendar with the need to maintain the consistency of the Google homepage. We really appreciate your feedback regarding the Google logo, and please be assured that we’re actively pursuing ways in which we can acknowledge Memorial Day and other such occasions in the future.

The Google Team

Link Caution: this page is where I found this post but please note the site has (in my opinion) questionable content outside of the link I provided. Please keep this in mind - unfortunately it seemed to have the only feedback from Google (that appeared legitimate) on this topic.

So what do you think? Does Google have a good point here? In my opinion Google is right that they should be concerned how they portray their themed logo for such a solemn day. That said, I think it sends the wrong message to break their themed-logo tradition on such an important day. In fact, Google’s thoughtlessness clearly breeds confusion in the minds of many Americans.

What do you think? Speak up and leave a comment!

Post by Ross Dunn, CEO, StepForth Web Marketing Inc.