Google has issued an apology and removed a temporary email feature after one of its April Fools’ jokes backfired.
Gmail users woke up Friday morning to find an option to send a “Mic Drop” response to email threads that sent an animated gif showing a minion character from the “Despicable Me” franchise dropping a microphone, and subsequently muted the conversation for the sender which led many to believe their email threads were deleted and unrecoverable.
“Today, Gmail is making it easier to have the last word on any email with Mic Drop. Simply reply to any email using the new ‘Send + Mic Drop’ button. Everyone will get your message, but that’s the last you’ll ever hear about it. Yes, even if folks try to respond, you won’t see it,” a post on the company’s Official Gmail Blog read.
However, the feature was poorly received by a number of users who took to the Gmail Help Forum to complain, saying the “childish” animations were accidentally included in important and professional emails.
“I hit this thing by accident in a professional email sending a contract. This is ridiculous and not funny at all. Remove it please!!!” one user wrote.
“Dear Google, please remove that stupid drop mic video button from my Gmail account. It is not welcome not useful. Tempted to go to Outlook just for that,” another said, referring to rival Microsoft’s email service.
One user even claimed he lost a job after unintentionally pressing the “Send + Mic Drop” button.
“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,” a forum post with the topic headline “Will Google give me a job” read.
Google’s Gmail team has since removed the feature and apologized, blaming the mishaps on a “bug.”
“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,” the updated blog post read.