Google is taking some heat for its latest attempt at a successful April Fools' Day prank, this time involving those dastardly minions. The Gmail Mic Drop, introduced via a lengthy and overly enthusiastic press release on Friday, allowed users to employ a new option when replying to mail from those in need of receiving the final word:
"Email's great, but sometimes you just wanna hit the eject button," Google publicly theorized. "Like those heated threads at work, when everyone's wrong except you (obviously)." Users were invited to simply tap the new Send + Mic Drop button, which responded to any given email with a Minions-assisted GIF before gifting senders with the confidence of never having to hear from that respective thread ever again:
Totally not susceptible at all to potential problems, right? Wrong. "Mic Drop is a terrible idea," a presumably annoyed James Apple wrote in the Gmail Help Forum. "Google, turn it off! I use Gmail to communicate with people who I care about." As noted by Quartz, additional complaints quickly started to pile up. Some claimed the minion's Mic Drop was simply another in Google's long history of botched prank attempts. Others, such as writer Allan Pashby, said the prank feature was directly impacting their source of income:
Thanks to Mic Drop I just lost my job. I am a writer and had a deadline to meet. I sent my articles to my boss and never heard back from her. I inadvertently sent the email using the "Mic Drop" send button.There were corrections that needed to be made on my articles and I never received her replies. My boss took offense to the Mic Drop animation and assumed that I didn't reply to her because I thought her input was petty (hence the Mic Drop). I just woke up to a very angry voicemail from her which is how I found out about this "hilarious" prank.
As the complaints started to reach peak annoyance, Google reversed its course. "Well, it looks like we pranked ourselves this year," a spokesperson later said in an updated statement. "Due to a bug, the Mic Drop feature inadvertently caused more headaches than laughs. We're truly sorry. The feature has been turned off." Word of advice, Google: Leave the corny pranks to corny pranksters.