How a few flaky elevator buttons tear our office apart

Here with The edge, we have already established our button bona fides. We have a Button of the month column and a podcast called Why do you press that button?. We follow the development of buds, we regret that they have fallen into oblivion and we write ballads to the strangest buds that people have invented.


So it really stings when knobs turn us over.

Exhibit A: the elevator buttons in our building … sometimes. They seem to ignore half of the people who press on them, which can lead to frustrated stacks in the elevators on busy mornings. I have been observing the situation passively for weeks and have seen my fellow construction workers argue with each other, swapping conspiracy theories about how the system works and angrily knocking the stuff out of the button bank. It's getting pretty ugly.

Things were getting so bad that a few weeks ago I decided to drop everything and find out why these stupid little buttons are tearing our office apart. Of course we made a video about it. So, if you've ever been misled by a button in your life – or just want to see my colleague Casey Newton dramatically one button incident he got into it watch the video above.