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Google’s Gmail Prank Already Backfired; Just Shut the Whole Internet Down

We'll all reconvene on Monday. Cool?

Parks and Rec Ron Swanson throws computer away.

So we’ve all come to expect the Internet to be the worst on Gaslighting Day April Fools’ Day, which is today, in case you’re not incredibly attentive to calendar dates and see any suspicious news items. What we don’t necessarily expect is for that to include software that we all need to use every day—even this stupid, stupid day—to do our jobs, which is where Google’s Gmail prank went a little awry.

See, they added a “mic drop” button that allowed users to, with a single click, insert a microphone drop gif (featuring a Minion, because why not?) at the end of an email and auto-archive the conversation. That sounds pretty fun until you consider that it replaced the normal “send and archive button” and caused a bunch of people to accidentally send mic drops in inappropriate situations. Think about just how many work emails you’ve sent that would seem incredibly obnoxious with the simple addition of a mic drop, and you’ll fully grasp the gravity of the situation.

It also mutes the conversation in question (as you’d expect after dropping the mic), and one person claims to have lost a job over it already—although who knows if we should believe them, because today is the worst. If it’s true, we can only hope their boss will become aware of the situation and things will be smoothed over. Others have had troubles ranging from activating the mic drop feature accidentally through habitual keyboard shortcuts, missed clicks, or generally buggy functionality including the button activating for a normal “send” click on drafts where “mic drop” was clicked before any recipients were entered, which is pretty easy to imagine for a joke feature someone might test out for fun and then set about writing a real email.

For their part, Google has already updated the blog post on the new “feature,” saying, “Well, it looks like we pranked ourselves this year. 😟 Due to a bug, the Mic Drop feature inadvertently caused more headaches than laughs. We’re truly sorry. The feature has been turned off. If you are still seeing it, please reload your Gmail page.” Truly, Google has had the last word on why April Fools’ Day is the worst.

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(via Ars Technica, image via NBC)

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