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Google April Fools’ Day prank goes wrong

A Gmail-related April Fools’ Day prank hasn’t been received well at all.

It’s April 1, which means that every jolly prankster in the developed world is busy playing or plotting (depending on time zone) ‘hilarious’ tricks on the rest of us.

As always, those funsters over at Google have their own tech-related gag. The trouble is, a lot of people haven’t found this year’s prank very funny.

This year, Google added a ‘Mic drop’ button to the Gmail service. This provided a button that would embed a GIF of a Minion dropping a microphone, and would prevent any further reply from the receiver.

All very droll, we’re sure you’ll agree. The trouble is, it has proved all too easy to send such an email without even realising it, given that the ‘mic drop’ button replaces the often-used ‘send and archive’ button on Gmail.

You can imagine the damage already. Many business customers have hastily sent important emails, only to receive irate feedback from customers and clients who have felt slighted by the flippant tone of the GIF and the lack of response to their emails.

Even worse, there appears to have been no way to restore the broken email chain once the mistake was realised.

Related: What is Alphabet? Google’s parent company explained

Sure enough, Google has now pulled its ill-advised prank. Over on the related Gmail blog post, Google has added the following 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.”


Next, check out the key features of Google’s Android Marshmallow:

What are the worst prank back-fires you’ve experienced, April Fools’ Day or otherwise? Let us know in the comments.

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