Google launches doodle on Litfaßsäule – the iconic advertising pillarsDevdiscourse News Desk | Berlin | Updated: 01-07-2020 15:43 IST | Created: 01-07-2020 15:43 IST
Let's celebrate the Litfaßsäule with Google. Yes, Google has launched a very artistic doodle to celebrate the Litfaßsäule. These iconic advertising pillars were named after the man who first suggested them, Ernst Litfaß (pronounced Lit-fass). On this date in 1855, to the fanfare of a live orchestra, Berlin's very first Litfaßsäule was dedicated at the intersection of Münzstraße and what is today Almstadtstraße.
Before the creation of Litfaßsäule, Berlin had a problem with advertisements—they were scattered all over the city, from walls to fences and everywhere in between. The widespread clutter irked Litfaß, and so the clever printer and publisher proposed these dedicated advertising pillars to be placed on Berlin's busiest corners and plazas as a more organized alternative.
The idea of putting up poster pillars arose to counteract the wild posters that were taking hold at the time . Litfaß suggested that the police chief of Berlin, Karl Ludwig von Hinkeldey, put up pillars all over the city on which people could hang their posters. After years of negotiations, Litfaß received the first approval for its advertising pillars' on December 5, 1854. The city of Berlin gave him a monopoly until 1865 for the erection of his columns.
The city agreed to commission 150 pillars as an official system for paid advertisements, and before long the columns were lined cleanly with eye-catching notices for cultural institutions like theaters and dance halls. The unusual, three-meter-tall fixtures were met with huge popularity among Berlin's residents. Over the decades, the Litfaßsäule came to serve as a symbol of Berlin, and booklovers may even recognize one from the famous cover of Erich Kästner's 1929 children's book "Emil and the Detectives."
Today, there are over 50,000 Litfaßsäule—many like those depicted in the Doodle artwork—in use throughout Germany, and they still serve as a popular and practical advertising channel for local events and small organizations. While many of Berlin's original pillars have since been removed or replaced by newer models, it's clear that the Litfaßsäule continue to hold a special place in the hearts of the city's residents.