Two weeks ago, Google Blogoscoped’s Philipp Lenssen was welcomed on gmail.com with the following message:
We can’t provide service under the Gmail name in Germany; we’re called Google Mail here instead. If you’re traveling in Germany, you can access your mail at http://mail.google.com. Oh, and we’d like to link the URL above, but we’re not allowed to do that either. Bummer. For general information about Google, please visit www.google.com or www.google.de.
Of course, he directly linked this to the lost trademark battle of Google. German Daniel Giersch owns “G-mail” and successfully sued the Internet giant for using it. Google had already replaced the Gmail logo with a Google Mail logo and now it seemed that they’ve retreated even further. Anyhow, a few hours later, Gmail appeared to be in its normal shape again.
But now, rumor has it that the sorry message is back…, for good. Several blogs like Slashdot, Betanews, and WebhostDirectory report that the screen is here to stay:
I’m sure on of our German readers can confirm this. If so, I feel sorry for you to type in mail.google.com as it’s six characters longer. That seems like a minor effort, but let’s assume you check your email ten times a day. Then, all of a sudden, it’s 60 characters extra. Now consider the number of Germans using Gmail, probably millions, and multiply it with 60. All this extra typing work for the copyright needs of one man. What’s this world coming to?