Randomness (r_ness) wrote,

Today's Google Doodles.

Today is Armistice Day. It is also Remembrance Day in the countries of the Commonwealth, Veterans Day in the United States, and Narodowe Święto Niepodległości (National Independence Day) in Poland.*

Whenever Google puts up a doodle for a day that has significance in multiple countries I wonder what else they're using to commemorate the day on their other sites around the world. I'm finding today's commemorations interesting in their nuanced differences.

In a number of the Commonwealth nations, there is no doodle today. Instead, there is an understated message beneath the search box, with a link to the Google Cultural Institute's site on the First World War. That and a small poppy, whose alt tag is "Remembrance Day":

"Remembering the First World War. Stories from the front."

Remembrance Day

That's what you'll see today on Google UK and Google Australia, and on Google's English language site for New Zealand. (The Maori site has no poppy and no link.) Google Canada has just a poppy for both the English and French sites, with no message or link, which is interesting, because Google Belgium has both the poppies and the links, bilingual in Dutch ("Herdenking Eerste Wereldoorlog. Beelden en verhalen van het front") and French ("Première Guerre Mondiale : revivez l’Histoire au travers de récits et photos"), but not in their German or English versions.

In France, an equally understated cornflower (a bleuet de France) replaces the poppy:

Armistice de 1918

Google Poland's site, shows a Independence Day doodle today:

Narodowe Święto Niepodległości

The Google Doodle on the United States site

Veteran's Day 2014

reflects a difference in emphasis between Veterans Day and Remembrance Day: "In the U.S., the function of Veterans Day is subtly different from that of other 11 November holidays. Unlike the situation in other countries, where that calendar date is set aside specifically for honoring those who died in action, Veterans Day honors all American veterans, whether living or dead, killed in action or deceased from other causes. The official national remembrance of war dead is instead Memorial Day, originally called 'Decoration Day', from the practice of decorating the graves of soldiers, which originated in the years immediately following the American Civil War.

*From the "National Independence Day" Wikipedia entry: "All of these holidays and Polish Independence Day are indirectly related because they all emerged from the circumstances at the end of World War I. In other countries, holidays were established in the spirit of grief and horror at the enormous human cost of the war, and they mark the sacrifices of those who fought. For Poland, however, the tragedy of the war was tempered by what had been accomplished at its end: the restoration of a sovereign Polish state that had been lost entirely in the partitions of Poland, after 123 years of struggle."

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