Burned By Gmail Outage? Google Will (Almost) Buy You a Postage Stamp

Updated: Folks, if you were burned by last night’s Gmail outage and pay for your service, don’t despair, Google has a service-level agreement in place to atone for the loss of productivity. The downside is that atonement comes in the form of a 3-day credit for service that’s worth about 41 cents. Update: But don’t worry, Google is feeling generous, and will offer you the maximum 15-day credit.

Ken Godskind, chief strategy officer at web site performance monitoring firm AlertSite, notes that Google (s Goog) offers paid users a credit should the site experience below 99.9 percent availability each month. From Godskind’s email:

Assuming the reports about today’s outage of 2.5 hrs are true that would put Feb uptime at ~ 99.6%. This is a breach of Google’s SLA and the penalty is 3 days of service credit.

Google charges $50 annually for each license, which means that the credit for the 2.5 hours of downtime equals out to about 41 cents per employee. That’s not enough to buy you a postage stamp. Because most people would scoff at such an offer, Google has extended it to a 15-day credit worth a more reasonable $2.05.  Normally, the credit’s not enough to buy a postage stamp, but now you can get a value meal or two. However, for those who want to claim their credit, Godskind notes that you have to let Google know within 30 days.