Just as Brian Eno won't call himself a musician, despite recording like so many albums, Google refuses to use the term "Gchat," even though that's how everyone refers to its popular instant message service in a completely not-derogatory way. Snooty Google employees use the term "Google Talk" and corrects those use the shorter term, BetaBeat's Adrianne Jeffries reports. Gchat has not been trademarked, even though there are 879,000+ search results for it.
At the company itself, people say Gchat, Jeffries reports. Only users in India say Google Talk. Why won't Google embrace the term? Jeffries has a theory and enlists someone close to a Google employee to back it up:
[C]ould the resistance to “Gchat” be another example of how Google, despite its ability to build tools that we all love and depend on, just doesn’t grok us? Twitter adopted the “retweet”and accompanying terminology from its users. ”I think it’s just another example of Google completely failing at social,” the significant other of the Googler said in confidence. “Their products are obviously great but sometimes their Aspbergers shows—they just don’t ‘get’ people.”
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to email@example.com.