The best online April Fool’s pranks of 2016

You shouldn’t believe everything you read or see on the Internet and on April Fool’s all of us should be hyper-vigilant. I’m sure many of you, including myself, have excitedly read about something on April 1st without realizing the date and fell for the story hook, line and sinker. This year, of course, was no exception and there were many online pranks that had us thinking twice. Here are the top online April Fool’s pranks of 2016:

Gmail drops the mic

gmail

This year saw an April Fool’s joke go too far when Gmail announced their “Gmail Mic Drop” feature. This feature would attach a GIF of a Minion (those yellow characters from the movie Despicable Me) to the end of an email when clicking on “Reply to all”. In the GIF a Minion is dressed as royalty and literally drops a mic to signify that the conversation is now over. The email would then be archived and any responses to that email wouldn’t be seen by the user.

Unfortunately, many people did not see the notification that warned them that the GIF would be attached to their email. People were left red-faced and angry after they sent this embarrassing GIF to work colleagues, bosses and potential employers. Some have even threatened to sue Google for the misstep.

Silicon Valley style

Mark Zuckerberg Facebook H&M

Mark Zuckerberg is the CEO and co-founder of Facebook. It is well-known that his style is very simplistic and rarely varies (with the exception of his wedding day). You will almost always see him in a t-shirt, jeans and either Adidas flip flops or sneakers.

This year the Swedish retail company H&M introduced the Mark for H&M collection as their April Fool’s prank. The entire collection consisted of one pair of blue jeans and 7 grey t-shirts. An entire website and special logo was created for this purpose (you can still view it online). A real quote uttered by Zuckerberg helps to create a feeling of authenticity.

Ban on animal nudity

National Geographic

National Geographic is an institution that has published quality articles and images of geography, animals, world culture and history since the 1800s. As their April Fool’s prank they promised to stop the humiliation of taking photos of animals without their clothes on. They would from now on only show pictures where the animals are wearing clothes. The “article” was accompanied by pictures of cats and dogs all dressed up. Though it might have been a prank, you can still view the cute photos in an online gallery.

A lick a day

Online retailer of geeky products, ThinkGeek, came out with a Flavor of the Day Desktop Calendar. This calendar features a new flavour for each day of 2016 alongside some facts about the flavour. But the best part about this funky buy is that you can lick the paper of that day to taste the flavour! They have flavours like bacon, chai tea, durian fruit, cupcakes, orange juice, and more. Of course, the company accepts no liabilities for paper cuts suffered because of excessive licking. The calendar is still up on their site, if you click the “Buy Now” button all gets revealed by a dancing man, hilarious.

Experience true reality

Tech giant Google has their very own virtual reality platform called Google Cardboard. It is basically a piece of cardboard that you unfold according to a design and then mount your smartphone on. You then simply use one of the virtual reality applications available for it and go on a ride! But you can always go one step further.

On April 1st Google announced the Google Cardboard Plastic. It is a plastic see-through version of their cardboard product. It was purported to be the world’s first actual reality headset. As Google puts it, “What’s realer than real?” It lets you see the world through your own eyes with 360-degree sound, the ability to touch what you see, 20/20 vision, and 4D perspective. It’s all very tongue-in-cheek but maybe Google is trying to tell us to take our noses out of our technology and experience the real world for a change.

Drop it like it’s hot

YouTube 360-degree video Snoop Dogg

YouTube had its own prank up its sleeve. If you watched any videos on this site on April 1st you would likely have seen that a new silhouette icon had made its appearance. It was the side profile of a man with his dreadlocks flowing behind him. If you click on it you would have learned about SnoopaVision. SnoopaVision puts the video you’re watching in 360-degree mode while legendary rap artist Snoop Dogg sits in the background giving occasional commentary or throwing his popcorn in the air. Even though it’s an April Fool’s prank YouTube uploaded actual videos with SnoopaVision for our enjoyment.