Gmail’s April Fools prank this year has proven to have been a little too effective. The joke involved a new “mic drop” button that would play a .gif of a Minion dropping a microphone to the recipient. More importantly, it would also turn off notifications from that email thread; preventing anyone from being informed about replies.
This resulted in the Gmail help forums being flooded by people who had accidentally clicked the “mic drop” button instead of the regular Send Message. This resulted in individuals who apparently offended others with the .gif, which resulted in at least one person claiming to have lost his job.
Google has since pulled the “feature” from Gmail and apologised for causing all the trouble. The update posted to the Gmail blog explained the decision:
UPDATE: 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.
Most April Fools pranks from Google have been harmless in the past, and the ‘mic drop’ could have been a clever way to end emails between coworkers or friends. Unfortunately, it turns out that messing with people’s primary mode of professional communication isn’t the best of ideas.
[Source: Gmail Blog]