No one turned into a cat, appeared upside down, or made a Britney Spears reference, but world leaders attending a virtual G7 conference on Friday experienced their own low-key videoconferencing snafu. Reuters reports it came courtesy of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who inadvertently interrupted British Prime Minister Boris Johnson as he started the meeting. Videos show that as Johnson tried to address the likes of Merkel, President Biden, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau, and leaders from France, Japan, and Italy, a voice could be heard talking over him in the background.
It was Merkel, chatting with someone on her end in Berlin, apparently unaware that everyone in the meeting was privy to the conversation. "Can you hear us, Angela?" Johnson asked with a laugh. "I think you need to mute." It's not the first time Merkel has had technical difficulties during a virtual meetup. Meanwhile, the Independent notes that French President Emmanuel Macron made his own minor videoconferencing faux pas, showing up late to the G7 meeting by 15 seconds or so. (This Zoom call descended into utter chaos.)