Monday, June 19, 2006

Germans save trafficlight man

After surviving the collapse of communism and attempts by bureaucrats to wipe him out, East Germany's green pedestrian traffic light man has emerged unscathed from a legal tug of war.

The hat-bearing figure used on pedestrian crossings across the former East Germany is one of the last visible reminders of the nation's divided past, and a source of pride for many of the country's well-disciplined pedestrians.

A court in Leipzig ruled on merchandising rights in favour of Ampelmann GmbH, a firm which produces and sells a range of the traffic-light man goods and which brought the case.

The silhouette -- with the man striding ahead on green and outstretched arms on red -- has become a popular symbol on a range of t-shirts, toys, mugs and other tourist souvenirs.

However, rights to use the figure on a range of liqueurs is retained by an east German businessman.

Introduced in East Germany in 1961, the little traffic-light man was once almost ditched in favour of standardised, sexless red and green figures used on pedestrian crossings across Europe.


yellowdog granny said...

is he doing a heil hitlet thing with his arm???

dom said...

He is ! LOL
One thing I thought was funny with the world cup was that the German police banned Hitler salutes and swastikas ,but said a goosestep was ok if done in a humourous way :)

yellowdog granny said...

im sure that made john cleese happy.