Breather wants to save you from unwanted office distractions with the Nope button

In what is clearly a marketing ploy from workspace rental service Breather, the company is launching a Chrome plug-in called the “Nope Button.”

The idea here, according to the company, is to help people avoid distractions in the office, even if they can’t reserve a private Breather to get some alone time. With open work spaces becoming the standard in startup offices (and elsewhere), it can be really easy to get pulled into a thousand different conversations over the course of the work day.

The Nope Button aims to save you from that.

Here’s how it works:

Users can install the Nope Button as a Chrome plug-in, which will in turn ask for the user’s cell phone number. After that, a big Nope button will display right in their browser. When someone from the office approaches with a new task or distraction, users can simply press the Nope button.

Upon pressing “Nope,” the service will automatically place a call to the given phone number, offering the user an ‘out’ from that conversation and a way to get back on track.

I’m told that the transcript of the phone call is inspired by that iconic scene in the Matrix. Here is the transcript:

Hello, on the count of 3 put your hand to your mouth in alarm as if you’re hearing bad news. Don’t look sad just look concerned. 1, 2, 3.

At this point, your colleagues may be staring at you. Wave them off and point at the phone so they look away. They’re still looking? Okay. Fake some laughter, roll your eyes and shrug at them with a smile. They’ll get the hint.

Still looking? Fine. Repeat these works after me in a serious, concerned tone:
“Yes, of course I can talk now. What’s the matter?” Works ever time.

Now it appears you’re having trouble focusing at work. If this is true then I have a place for you. But first I have to ask, is that what you really want? A Breather is safe quiet space away from all the madness of open office plans and daily distractions.

I have a code so you can use it. Whether you use it is up to you. The code is N-O-P-E. You can use it for a discount at Good luck.

A few problems:

If your boss or supervisor pops up behind your desk to ask a question, and you keep clicking away at your browser, that might not be a great thing to do.

If your boss or supervisor is trying to talk to you about something and you choose to answer your phone over having that conversation, that may also present a problem.

And finally, if your phone rings every single time someone comes up to talk to you, folks around the office might start to figure out that you’re playing around with a Chrome plug-in to avoid them.

That said, Breather is thinking outside the box when it comes to marketing. This is a fun way to build up awareness of the Breather service, and if it didn’t cost much by way of money or engineering resources, it’s potentially more clever than a subway ad or the like.