first i have to say that i’m a fan of google and their services. due to my google account profile i’m currently using 21 different google services. one of them is of course google’s popular webmail service gmail – fortunately not as my primary mail service.
furthermore sahim pointed out in one of the comments that google’s social networking platform orkut is completely down today as well, saying “orkut is under construction, please check back soon”.
at google groups there is a discussion about this topic including an answer from the gmail support team:
“our engineering team has been working to resolve the issue with your account that we detected in our system. we appreciate your patience with us. everyone at google realizes how important email communications can be so it is with a heavy heart and tremendous disappointment that we must let you know that an isolated problem caused the loss of all the data in your account before december 18th. our engineers worked long nights to try to locate any recoverable information, but after doing everything they could think of, asking the help of other engineers at google and spending nights pounding their keyboards, they have finally had to accept that for your account we could not recover the data.”
in times where we handle so much conversation via email this is a disaster for every affected gmail user. but no system is perfect and we have to deal with tons of beta’s in web 2.0 times.
update – december 28. 2006 at 19:07: a google spokeswoman sent om malik an email explaining the situation – doing the pr limitation of damage:
“regretfully, a small number of our users