The Great Email Meltdown of 2013 – Reporting Live!

This morning a high level executive at my company sent an email out to everyone in his division, which totals around 10,000 employees (we are teeny ants in a giant maze of corporate anthills). It was basically a short, informative, feel good message updating and thanking people for their efforts on a few different initiatives.

No one thought anything of it until some rube in a cube hit reply to all, asking everyone in the omniverse why he was on this mailing list. And thus began our inevitable slide into Armageddon. The first thirty or so responses were the usual argle bargles requesting to be removed also, please, and have a great day! or hollering impotently, “PLEASE STOP REPLYING TO ALL!!1!” After receiving another dozen, people drunk on the pure adrenaline rush of opening emails started getting cocky. A few of the more interesting responses included:

“Is the reply to all train kinda like the crazy train? Bazinga!” 

“When someone yells ‘STOP’, I never know if it’s in the name of love, it’s Hammertime, or I should collaborate and listen.”

“Let us all remember that we put on our big boy and girl pants on today. This is really an annoyance to those whom are actually trying to do their job.”

“What isn’t this?”

 “Since we are all gathered together, I have to ask…has anyone seen my car keys? I have seemed to have misplaced them…”

“7 weeks til 49ers football season!”

“NSA secrets are buried somewhere in this email chain….”

“Man, this is BULLSHIT! I don’t have time for this crap. I get one more email, and I am forwarding on to Upper management, and making a corporate complaint! STOP!”

And my personal favorite,

“I AM IN ST. LOUIS, MO AND HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THAT.”

Eventually the emails trailed off, the entire office stopped chuckling and everyone managed to get some work done. Until another inevitable Real American Hero couldn’t control his razor-sharp wit. “Thanks for quitting responding to all, everyone.” And you keep fucking that chicken, sir.

Instant pandemonium in the streets once again. At one point the executive assistant of the original sender responded back to everyone with a curt, “You were ALL supposed to receive this email. Thank you.” But her voice was drowned out by the collective screeching of the mob.

Somehow, despite the turbulent cloud of excrement hurtling through the company servers, my manager managed to get a note out to the three of us who report up to her. “In case any of you didn’t realize it’s not a good idea to get involved in this, it’s not a good idea to get involved in this.” I almost responded back, “PLEASE REMOVE ME FROM THIS MAILING LIST, THANK YOU,” but kind of figured it was too soon.

It’s almost comforting that out of the 10,000 employees on that message, only about 150 (that’s just 1.5%!) are completely bonkers. Some days it feels like that number is much, much higher.

UPDATE, 3:50pm: It appears that the screamy, sweary guy (see above) freaked people out enough to stop the flirty responses. Emails are still pouring in but have returned to the basic “please remove me” template.

UPDATE, 8:57am next day: The golden age has passed. All I have to report is the somewhat disappointing, “I’m not even the right Megan!” Why can’t you be more like the other Megan, Megan?

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7 Responses to The Great Email Meltdown of 2013 – Reporting Live!

  1. Amy says:

    So jealous I didn’t experience this firsthand. It is a comfort to know the percentage of crazies is so low… at this moment.

  2. your friend Jenny says:

    “When someone yells ‘STOP’, I never know if it’s in the name of love, it’s Hammertime, or I should collaborate and listen.”
    This is the best ever. I shall use it from now on. always.

  3. Max says:

    reply all is obnoxious and rarely used appropriately. every office has one of those guys. sounds like an eventful day . . .

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