Zach Galifianakis hits 'Reply All': What's your email horror story?

Zach-GalifianakisImage Credit: PRN/PR PhotosThe Hangover star Zach Galifianakis just sold a pitch for a comedy called Reply All about a guy who accidentally clicks that dreaded button on an “indiscreet” email, according to Deadline. The oft-bearded comedian is set to produce and star in the movie, which is set up at DreamWorks.

The premise sounds pretty great to me. Who hasn’t slapped their head in shock/horror after accidentally sending an email to the wrong person? Or finding a humiliating typo the second after you hit Send? Or unknowingly sending a catty note back to an ex who sent you a really inane email when you meant to forward it to your friend (whose name just happens to start with the same first two letters) but somehow clicked Reply instead, and then you had to write a groveling apology email in a last-minute effort to save face, but that person was obviously horrified and never wrote back? That’s just hypothetical, of course. Never happened to me. What kind of idiot would do that? [Tugs at collar, sweating.]

Okay, PopWatchers, your turn. What’s your email horror story? Come clean!

Comments (66 total) Add your comment
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  • nodnarb

    Has anyone actually done this in the last 10 years?

    • Karate Pants

      Oh, come on! It could totally happen to you.

    • Kate

      The number of these I see from my two bosses and my mom are still ridiculous. What is always funny is watching the odd follow up emails.

    • AIan

      Sorry Snarky Computer Nerd, but yes we have. So you can go back to waiting in line for your 4G whatever and let us swap stories, k?

      • nodnarb

        Oh, hi Grandpa!

      • elsie

        Brandon (oooh – decoded, You obviously don’t work in a professional office enviroment.

    • Bubba’s mom

      Sure nodnarb; unlike you, some people have made mistakes in the past 10 years. It’s nice to know you’ll stay warm in the winter months, basking in the glow of your own self satisfaction, though.

  • Colin

    I replied to a crazy (yes, crazy… I had a restraining order on her whole family) ex-girlfriend’s message when I was really not sober. It’s not really a “reply all” story, but it’s probably worse.

  • Dude

    I got an e-mail from a news reporter asking pointed questions about our company. I forwarded the e-mail to my supervisor along with various disparaging remarks about the reporter, questioning her integrity, etc. However, I didn’t forward the e-mail. It was a reply. Fortunately, the reporter moved on to something else in the next news cycle and my folly was never made public.

  • MikerMan

    At work, I was in a discussion with a co-worker over email about how hot some olympic athletes were. Then we were talking about hockey players and for whatever reason we were talking about which ones were lesbians and such…don’t ask. Anyway, I cc’d a co-worker buddy in on the conversation and his first name was Dean and you know how Outlook works….start typing in a name and a drop down of several names come in…but I didn’t look to see who’s name was selected. So yeah, a VP of my company got the email about hot female hockey lesbians. I had to call him directly, before he got the email (recalling it didn’t work) and explain the circumstances. Needless to say, I’m lucky to have a job.

  • KD

    I went on a first date and then wrote a long play-by-play email to my best friend to tell her about how I thought it went, etc. I typed in the first three letters of my friend’s email address and the autofill thing clicked in. I hit send and then realized that I sent the email to the woman I had just gone on the date with. I freaked out and then sent her an email marked “urgent, read first” and asked her to please delete the other email without reading it. She said she did, but things fizzled and we only went out one more time. It happened a few years ago but I still cringe when I think about it.

  • Mavis

    Just recently at work he had a guy who works in IT (!) who replied to all. It was supposed to go to our benefits lady. We are getting new dental insurance and all employess needed to forward their SSN for them & their family. So he sent his SSN for his entire family to all 500 employees! This happened just last week!

    • erin

      Ugh, you should not send your SSN in an email. I’m an IT professional and it’s just not secure enough!

      • Larry Jones

        That’s not *entirely* true. It is secure if you use an encryption tool (PGP, TrulyMail, GPG, etc.) to secure it. If you just send plain email then you are right…it is not secure.

  • Shelley

    I was at work and had written this long two page letter to my cousin. I detailed all the things that had been going on in my life. Really personal stuff. Then I typed E for Erin but instead “Everyone” (which was for the entire company) popped up and I hit sent. I knew what I did as soon as it sent. My co-worker’s said they could hear me scream at the other end of the building. I had to get on the intercom and ask people not to read it. You know they did. Finally the IT guy came back from lunch and removed the remaining unread ones from everyone’s email.

  • Vicky

    A few years ago, at my previous place of employment, they had to move the reply all button far far away from the reply button in Outlook. It was a big company, so if you if replied all on a firm wide e-mail, it was a big deal.

    • they had to move the key? you think they do that at most “big companies”? was it a company full of monkeys?

      • Music Fan

        You’d be surprised. The bigger the company, the bigger number of monkeys. We had to lock down distribution lists it got so out of hand

  • Karate Pants

    Wrote a long, mocking email about an annoying co-worker, intended to send it to a friend, instead sent it directly to the annoying co-worker. Their names were similar, I hit the letter and went with Outlook’s first suggestion, which was wrong. Thankfully, she was out of the office, and the 70th IT guy I begged for help actually pulled the email. The annoying co-worker was tight with my boss, had the email not been pulled I would have been fired.
    It was such a dumb, sloppy mistake. I couldn’t believe it happened.

  • Peggy

    I have never sent a reply all, but the top person in my department did this once to an employee who had made some disparaging remarks. The boss made some equally scathing remarks about the employee that ended up by being read by all of us. Of course, it may not have been an accident.

  • sunny d

    I sent a guy a nice poem/email and put a personal note at the bottom. He thought it was cute and forwarded it to all the girls on his email list…but forgot to remove my personal note. He had a very busy night with emails and phone calls lol.

  • BLM

    I’m an Executive Assistant, and, while at work, I sent an email to my husband, berrating him about his spending habits and how little money we have. It was about a page of me yelling at him. I ended up sending it to him AND the entire group of senior managers at my work. I somehow clicked on the sr. manager Lotus Notes group. Everyone had a good laugh at my expense about that one.

  • Peter

    More dangerous, I think, is autocomplete in the To field. Way too easy to send something to the entirely wrong person. Reply All? I don’t think I’ve ever done that on accident.

    • Sara

      I agree. Gmail has a wonderful feature available where it recognizes groups of people you often email together, so if you accidentally let it auto-fill the wrong “Mike”, for instance, it will stop before it sends and ask if that’s really what you meant to do. It would be creepy if it hadn’t saved my ass once.

  • llevinso

    All of these comments are reasons I NEVER use my work email to send emails for anything aside from work-related anything. One of my coworkers and I like to chat back and forth via email during the day and it usually creeps into “b!tch about your boss” territory. Which is why I suggested we just switch over to our gmail accounts instead in case anything…unfortunate happen. So far so good!

    • Jamie

      That would be nice, but many of us work @ companies that have blocked all personal email sites…

      • llevinso

        Yeah I realize that. Mine fortunately does not. It does block some things, like Facebook, but not gmail or Yahoo.

  • Justin C.

    I’m very careful when I use the salutation “Regards” in a business email. The “g” is dangerously close to the “t” on the keyboard.

    • Flyer

      That is my constant worry too! I use “Best Regards” all the time, and I always find myself triple-checking that, because there HAVE been times when I’ve actually typed a “t” by accident and have had to correct it.

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