Sunday, 7 April 2013

7 Online Spoofs From April Fools' Day (2013 Edition)

Some of the spoof stories and pranks found on the web this April Fools' Day


Every year more and more websites and companies seem to be getting into the April Fools' Day spirit by posting spoof stories on their websites, and as I'm a big fan of pranks I thought I would round-up some of this year's April Fools' Day stories.

A step by step guide on how to boil water.

1) How To Make Boiling Water

I'll start off with a video found on the allrecipes.com website which teaches budding chefs how to make hot boiling water.  It's quite a daft video, but the voice-over catches the style of 'How To Cook' instructional videos perfectly, so even if you're a complete amateur when it comes to cooking you should be able to follow their step by step instructions and make your own 'hot boiling water'.

As one All Recipes member comments, "What a simple recipe!  I'm always looking for something quick and easy after work, and this is just perfect!"
How To Make Hot Boiling Water

2) YouTube Announce A Winner

One of the most famous April Fools' Day spoofs this year was the 'YouTube select a winner' prank whereby YouTube announced that for the last ten years YouTube has actually just been one big competition to find the best uploaded video.  After ten years they were finally bringing the competition to a close and were finally ready to announce a winner.  As the competition was now over the YouTube website would no longer be necessary and therefore they would subsequently be closing YouTube down:
YouTube ready to choose a winner

3) Virgin Atlantic Reveals Glass Bottomed Plane

One which I quite liked was the spoof news story on Virgin Atlantic's website announcing that thanks to the introduction of new technology, they were proud to create the world's first glass bottomed plane.  The story was an obvious April Fool and yet some people still felt the need to explain in the comments section the scientific reasons why the alleged glass bottom technology would be impossible to create:
Virgin Atlantic launches world's first glass bottomed plane

Could the answer to Earths energy problems be less than a decade away?

4) Creating A Miniature Sun Here On Earth

Strictly speaking this next one isn't an April Fool, as its been online for a few months now, but it's a spoof story which I really like so I thought I'd include it anyway.

Apparently, Tomorrow's Technology Today are reporting that scientists in Canada have come up with ambitious plans to create a miniature sun here on Earth which could solve the Earth's energy problems...
Creating a miniature sun here on Earth

5) Twitter Spoofs And Pranks

i) Not to be left out of the April Fools' Day scene, twitter announced that they were switching to a two-tier service.  With the basic service you would only get consonants, but five dollars per month would get you the premium service which also included vowels:
Twttr t strt chrgng fr vwls

To help make the transition to this new vowel-free twitter service smoother, twitter (or rather, twttr) also provided a link to a site that automatically transforms tweets into a Twttr friendly format:
twttr.com

Charles Fudgemuffin's twitter profile.
ii) As well as this fake news story from twitter, there were many April Fools 'facts' and jokes being tweeted by twitter users throughout the day.  Here's one I posted myself:

"The word 'gullible' is actually classified as a slang word and is therefore not included in any English dictionaries."

I doubt that anyone fell for it but just to clarify things, 'gullible' is indeed a real word and you can therefore find it in the dictionary.

N.B. If anyone would like to follow me, Charles Fudgemuffin, on twitter then my twitter name is @CFdgmffn.

iii) One twitter based prank which was going on throughout April 1st but which was a really cruel trick in my opinion was a prank involving Justin Bieber.  Some twitter users were changing their name to Justin Bieber and their photo to Justin Bieber's twitter photo, so that their account looked like Justin Bieber's. Then they would retweet tweets by Justin Bieber fans so that at first glance the Justin Bieber fan would think their dreams had come true and they'd received a retweet from their idol, Justin Bieber.  The fan would then later have their dreams cruelly shattered when they realised it was just a trick.

In all seriousness, this was a totally sly trick if you ask me and went a bit beyond the definition of a prank.  I know it was just meant as a bit of a laugh, but it's still a bit sly to mess with people's feelings, especially when they're harmless young kids.


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6) A Double Bluff From Metro

The trouble with most fake news stories is that everyone knows it's April Fools' Day and therefore everyone is immediately on their guard for possible tricks and bluffery.  To get around this, Metro cleverly used a double bluff when they featured a round-up of ten of the best April Fools' Day online spoofs found on the web this year.  However, the clever twist was that the round-up itself was actually an April Fools' joke and none of the alleged April Fools' spoofs were real:
April Fools' Day Round-Up From Metro

7) One From The Archives...

Finally, just to show that the spirit of April Fools' Day has been around in the media for a long time, here's a video from the past which I like.  It features Des Lynam as the host of Grandstand, and as he introduces the show he tells the viewers, 'We'll continue to do our best to cover sport in the way you like, backed up by our highly professional team.'  Right on cue, just at that very moment two members of that alleged highly professional team start having a fight in the background...
An old April Fools' joke on Grandstand

Even aliens can be prone to practical jokes...

If anyone else has any favourite online April Fools' Day jokes then feel free to leave a comment.

. . . . . . . .

The theme of practical jokes* is one which features in my sci-fi comedy novel 'How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy' which is available for Kindle from Amazon:
UK: How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy
US: How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy

* Or 'lush snaky tricks' as main character Eric calls them.

Please note, 'How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy' is suitable for ages 18+ and is not suitable for prudes or squares.


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About The Author

The 'How To Save The World' books
by Charles Fudgemuffin
Charles Fudgemuffin is the author of the alien comedy 'How To Save The World' books which are available for Kindle from Amazon.  The first book in the series is available from the following link:
How To Save The World: An Alien Comedy

As with all Kindle books, you can also download a free sample of the first few chapters.

Please note, the 'How To Save The World' books contain material suitable for ages 18+ and are not recommended for prudes or squares.