When the first day of April comes, it is already a tradition for technology company Google to play around and entertain with their April Fools' jokes. Back in 2013, it launched 'Google Nose', which integrates search with our sense of smell. Last year, they enabled Google Maps users to play Pac-Man on the streets. This year is no exception, with the search giant featuring the popular "minions".
But all that's cute doesn't always end cute.
For this year, Google launched a Gmail 'Mic Drop' feature, which embeds a GIF image of a minion dressed as royalty dropping a microphone. The feature, while it can be easily found as cute, was not seen as such by some people, especially those messages that contain serious and sensitive content.
One incident, seen below, shows an email about a prayer request. With the mic-drop minion being displayed at the end of the email, an email that seemed to be solemnly asking for a few thoughts was ruined by a minion that seemed to be arrogantly dropping a mic in front of the audience, and probably sending the wrong kind of message to the receiver.
Another incident, was with an email of someone from a funeral company sympathizing with one of their clients over their loss, and planning on the funeral arrangements. The minion was inadvertently included in the message, which could apparently send the wrong signals to the one receiving it.
The chaos doesn't even stop there, as the prank has allegedly caused the termination of employment of a worker. Allan Pashby took the time to write on a Google forum how an innocent picture caused him his job. He writes:
"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."
Google has since pulled the feature, and a spokesperson has released a statement in a blog post, which reads:
"Well, it looks like we pranked ourselves this year. Due to a bug, the MicDrop 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."