Google.ps, which has been a thing for quite some time, has created a huge stir in Israel today when the logo for their English-language version was switched from “Google – Palestinian Territories” to simply “Google Palestine.”
Google officials say the change simply reflects the changes by ICANN and ISO, as well as the UN’s recognition of Palestine as a “non-member observer state.” The announcement was met as a “step in the right direction” by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. The Palestinian Authority had apparently requested the change from Google as well.
Israeli officials are nowhere near so keen on this, insisting that Google’s name “pre-judges” the outcome of any future peace talks on Palestinian statehood by assuming the Palestinians will ever actually get a state.
The Israeli Foreign Ministry also issued a statement accusing Google of meddling in international politics, adding that in their view Google is taking a “controversial side” in the naming. Though since ICANN recognizes “.ps” tlds are belonging to Palestine now, not changing it also seems to be controversial.