Google has taken the rare step of apologising after a Gmail plugin it made for April Fools’ Day “caused more headaches than laughs”.
The “Mic Drop” gag, which involved creating a button so people could send a Minions gif and mute all further responses to an email chain, has resulted in Gmail users venting frustration online.
One person even claimed he may have lost the opportunity to score his dream job after accidentally sending the gif to a potential employer and therefore muted any responses he might receive.
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“Not only am I mortified of the mistake, but this could potentially cost me my dream job,” the man wrote on the Gmail Help Forum.
“This was a horrible, horrible idea with potentially irreparable damages for me.”
Another Gmail user said the feature is “screwing up” important email correspondence.
“I sent out an important email to 30 recipients and I inadvertently clicked the ‘mic drop’ send,” the person wrote.
“I tried to resend it without that, but it was too late.”
In a statement on the Gmail blog, Google apologised for the April Fools’ gag.
“We heard feedback that some of you were negatively impacted by this feature, so we quickly turned it off late last night,” Google announced.
“In addition, we are working to bring back mic-dropped messages that had subsequent replies to your inbox so you can read those. We realise many of you use Gmail for very important messages, and we are sorry if Mic Drop was in any way harmful to you.”
The internet giant says it should have asked users if they wanted to turn on the feature, instead of automatically updating it for everyone.
In addition, Google says the ‘send mic-drop’ button and other send buttons were too close together.
“Again, sorry,” Google wrote.
“We love April Fools jokes at Google, and we regret that this joke missed the mark and disappointed you.”
Google is renowned for its elaborate April Fools’ Day hoaxes.
In 2004, the company announced it was looking to hire people to be based at a fictitious research centre on the moon.
Meanwhile, in 2010, Google announced it was testing a feature that would allow Google Translate to help humans communicate with animals.