For those who think this is sort of an advance prank for the coming April Fools' day, well, be prepared to have your bubbles burst, but it's real this time — don't expect any kind of surprise stunts from Microsoft on April 1.
Microsoft Against April Fools' Day Jokes
Companies participating on April Fools' Day are nothing new, but this year, Microsoft decided it's time to finally stop doing so, considering all the mess some April Fools' jokes have caused in the past.
In a memo obtained by The Verge, Chris Capossela, marketing chief at Microsoft, discourages all employees from participating in any type of April Fools' gags. According to Capossela, data shows that these pranks does have a positive impact, but it's limited and therefore negligible as compared to a more negative result it'll eventually create, such as "unwanted news cycles."
Though the Microsoft exec said he appreciates the effort and time some have given to come up with creative pranks, he emphasized that "we have more to lose than gain by attempting to be funny on this one day." Simply put, some pranks — however humorous they may be — can do more harm than good.
April Fools' Pranks: Funny But At What Cost?
The April Fools' is a tradition that's been around for hundreds of years now. It can be an avenue to showcase one's wit and sense of humor, and there are instances when brands and companies use it to poke fun and throw shade at one another. However, though some may find it funny, it's also oftentimes nonsensical and can even backfire in the worst way possible.
One infamous April Fools' day joke was Google's Mic Drop, which happened in 2016. Perhaps with an intention of just being comical at first, in the end Google's prank caused scarred relationships, be it professional or personal.
The prank in question was available through Gmail. It's an alternative send button that, once used, would insert a Minion GIF looking smug and dropping a mic as if to say "we're done here/this convo is over." Sending this literally ends a conversation, as the sender won't be able to see any replies from the receiver once the GIF is sent. To add insult to injury, it was affected by a bug, causing some users to randomly send the GIF even if they hit the normal send button.
Google eventually realized it's a bad joke and apologized for what happened:
"We love April Fools jokes at Google, and we regret that this joke missed the mark and disappointed you."