And Now There is a Desktop

Reddit April Fool’s Day Button Still Going

There is a button… and if this button isn’t pressed, it will do some unknown thing. Oh there are theories as to what this unknown button will do, but no one knows exactly what it will do or why its even there. People just keep pressing the button over and over and over again and the world (well, the Reddit world anyway) just keeps wondering, ‘What will it do?’

Let me come in again.


So on April 1st over at Reddit, a button appeared. And the button worked simply enough. Someone had to press the button every minute. And that someone had to have never pressed the button before, for once you pressed it once you were never able to press it again. Once the presser pressed the button the timer would reset again back to 60 seconds.

So far the button has been pressed well over 600,000 times. Do the math on that. 600,000 in one week?! 600,000 clickers could have sustained the button for over a year if the clickers had even an ounce of restraint. But there is more going on here than meets the eye.

button-pressesI’ve been watching the button off and on for the last hour now – I really don’t have a life – and throughout the duration of my watching, I haven’t seen it go below 50 seconds once. So many people are wanting to smack that button that they can’t control themselves. Literally. But it gets better. Throughout Reddit, how long you waited to press the button is affixed to your avatar whenever you comment or anytime someone views your profile. And that goes without saying, being a “Button Presser” is now a HUGE thing out on Reddit. But its an even BIGGER deal now if you didn’t wait to press it.

Even though it isn’t even relevant on 99.999% of the comment boards it is beginning to weigh in to the credibility of the commentator.  “Oh good, says the 60 second presser. We are definitely listening to the one here who has zero self control whatsoever.” Quite funny actually. And sure, everyone would love to keep the button going and press it down in the 10 second left range. But it never gets there. Its quite impossible to do now. But I predict that as more and more of the fly by nights press out, it will thin out the crowd and begin allowing the clock to drop lower and lower. But that this button has continuously been pressed for a full weeks is pretty impressive.

And yet, that last sentence completely underestimates all things Reddit 100% because of this image here on the right. Yes, that is ebay – and those are the Reddit accounts for sale that haven’t pressed the button yet. Right, people are selling their accounts with zero button presses. And here is why there is a market for virgin button pressers, one more rule that I haven’t explained yet. In order to press the button you have to have been a member before April 1st 2015. So that keeps Reddit from just perpetually creating new accounts to press the button forever and ever. And thus the market for selling user accounts.  hahaha. Too funny.  So basically, you too can push the button even though you don’t have a Reddit account today, just purchase one of these Reddit pre 4/1/15 accounts and you are set! The next thing we will see on E-bay will be people selling sub 30 second presses. Which carries a whole lot of cache on the site right now. Check it out:

This is a graph made of the button presses throughout the night. You can see that the longest wait time was 37 seconds. And this was through the night!  haha. If you press it right away, your circle on your account is purple (and says 60 seconds, or whatever). Make it 50 seconds you go Blue. And green is the land after 40. But the peer pressure to press is off the hook. There are whole threads yelling at people to press it. “My Thoughts on Greys” – Grey is the color of the button you have if you are a “non-presser” or a “presser-virgin”. Maybe Hitler can explain the situation a little better for you:

Flair? Who cares about flair?!? What I want to know is, “WHAT WILL IT DO IF IT ISN’T PRESSED?!?”

Thoughts are all over the board on this point. Some Reddit users are convinced that the button is being pressed automatically. But that doesn’t account for all the button presser icons running around the site. Some Reddit users think that the whole button thing is more about the conjecture. At the end the button will display a message that says – “Congratulations, you partook in an experiment that got you, and 4.2 million other Reddit Users to press a non-functioning button. The epicurean reality of our current world has now been proven.” I personally will hold on to my shade of grey happily and wait. Unless someone hacks my laptop and presses for me at 59 seconds like what happened to poor Hitler. But if you want a Chrome plugin to help you watch the button when elsewhere on the interwebs, I’ve got you covered.  Or, are you hoping for a t-shirt touting your green-ness?  Got you there too.

Personally I believe that the button is someones brilliant Doctoral Thesis in the making. The paper will inevitably be titled, “On the Social Ramifications of Arbitrary Delimiters as Experienced by Reddit and the Button.”  Guaranteed.