Google Turns 13: A History of Google's Birthday Doodles


Happy birthday, Google. Today, the search engine turns 13. In keeping with tradition, Google has posted a birthday Doodle. This year’s logo is a throwback to the early 2000s, when Google’s logo emulated Yahoo in adding an exclamation point.

The exact date of Google’s birthday has changed and been debated a bit through the years. Google filed for incorporation on September 4, 1998, was established three days later on September 7, and the domain was registered September 15. All have been considered Google’s “birthday” at one point, but Google has officially chosen September 27 as their day.

Search Engine Watch has covered Google since Day 1 – whatever day you choose that to be. Search Engine Watch provided one of the earliest reviews of Google in August 1998, at which time then Ph.D. student and future Google CEO Larry Page said his goal was to "build a service where the priority is on giving users great results."

As for Doodles, the special logos have been around since Aug. 30, 1998. The first Doodle was created when Page and Sergey Brin attended the Burning Man festival. The first Google Doodle celebrating their birthday appeared on Sept. 27, 2002, for their fourth birthday.

Here’s a look back at Google birthday Doodles through the years:

Sept. 27, 2010


Sept. 27, 2009


Sept. 27, 2008


Sept. 27, 2007


Sept. 27, 2006


Sept. 27, 2005


Sept. 7, 2004


Sept. 7, 2003


Sept. 27, 2002


About the author

Danny Goodwin formerly was Associate Editor of Search Engine Watch, where he also covered the latest search marketing and industry news. He joined Incisive Media in October 2007, in charge of copy editing columns that appeared on both Search Engine Watch and ClickZ. Prior to a life in the search industry, he worked in the journalism field, working in numerous newsroom positions, before later working as a freelance copy editor.