Google Chrome wanna be startin’ something. The web browser has launched an extremely assertive new extension called “Shove” that lets you drop any web page you wish into your friend’s browser. Essentially, it’s Internet molestation, and it sounds like Google Chrome wants to take the NSFW acronym to terrifying new realms.
The good news: the extension is completely governed by an opt-in feature. So don’t worry about any of your Hangouts or Google+ buddies being able to push a pornado of windows and tabs into your browser without your consent. Both parties must agree to Shove, and from there, the havoc can begin. Shove pulls no punches, either – you can seriously open any link you want, anytime you want to, on someone’s browser, placing it as the tab that is front and center on their browser.
Despite the abuse that will undoubtedly arise from such an extension, Shove is a pretty easy and quick way to share everything from links to gifs and videos at the drop of a hat. If you have sensible friends who won’t allow you to starting shoving them, the extension does come equipped with something called a “Shovebot” which is a built-in script that lets you shove it links and will gladly return the favor. Shovebot is a great way to give the extension a test drive before signing your life away and being at the mercy of your friends who opt into it.
A gaudy yellow message from Shove will pop up indicating that someone is about to force their Internet whims onto you. Besides that, once you opt in, you have no control as to what gets shoved onto you, or when. Once you surrender to the Shove, prepare for the jostle.
Mike Lacher, who wrote most of the extension’s code, told Wired that they thought it would be an insanely fun and risky game to play with close friends, but other uses and applications started coming to light. “Once we built it and played around with it, it became less of a prank and more an easy way to share things back and forth… It was about having a creative conversation, where the domain name is the message. Or if you want to tell your friend ‘no way’ about something, sending them a link to a Google Image search is a lot more interesting,” Lacher said.
If that sounds like a way you want to communicate with your friends, then by all means, go forth and get your shove on. Just remember the Golden Rule: shove others the way you want to be shoved.