Seasonal decoration and localization have been discussion points around the SitePoint office of late. On one hand, what could be wrong with adding a little seasonal vibe to a site? A sprig of holly here, perhaps? A star there? You would have to be a total grinch to object, right?

The problem is whenever you ‘buddy up’ to part of your audience you can’t help but turn your back on another part of it. If you have a very defined niche audience, (i.e. gamers, metal heads, trekkies, hackers, etc), creating an ‘us vs. them’ vibe might be useful, but otherwise you probably need to be careful. Is the positive vibe you’re creating for the ‘us’s worth the small sense of alienation you may be creating for the ‘them’s?

After mulling over this question recently, we were interested this morning when Julian noted the playful polar bears cheekily preparing snowballs on Google. A bit of color perhaps, but this appears on the version of the site, meaning they can be pretty sure their audience comes to them in shorts, a t-shirt and sunscreen.

At a quick glance, the same goes for Google NZ, Google South Africa and Google Argentina, all also experiencing the full brunt of summer.

I know that weather prediction can be a dubious science at times, but the whole ‘summer/winter northern/southern hemisphere’ thing had been given the scientific ‘thumbs up’ last I heard ;)

But hey, cheeky polar bears are cute, I guess.