The internet makes April Fool’s Day shenanigans accessible to millions of people, many of them quite gullible. Here are some of the biggest and best internet pranks from the past few years:
- Google Changes Its Name: At midnight on April 1, 2010, Google announced it was changing its name…to Topeka. The gag came one month after the Topeka, KS decided to temporarily change its name to Google. Topeka’s mayor signed a proclamation to help convince Google his city was the best place for its soon-to-be-launched broadband network. Google fired back, replacing its standard home page logo with the word “Topeka”, and a photo showed the Google headquarters with a freshly updated sign.
- Google TiSP (Toilet Internet Service Provider): This was a fictitious free broadband service supposedly released by Google. This service would make use of a standard toilet and sewage lines to provide free Internet connectivity. The user would drop a weighted end of a long, Google-supplied fiber-optic cable in their toilet and flush it. Around 60 minutes later, the end would be recovered and connected to the Internet by a “Plumbing Hardware Dispatcher (PHD)”. The user would then connect their end to a Google-supplied wireless router and run the Google-supplied installation, or a user could request a professional installation, in which Google would deploy nanobots through the plumbing to complete the process.
- Water on Mars: The Astronomy Picture of the Day from NASA is always a treat, but on April 1, 2005 it was a tasty treat – an announcement of the discovery of water on Mars! Three years later, the joke became a reality, although many folks were understandably skeptical at first.
- Selfie Shoes: Who could forget 2015’s Selfie Shoes, courtesy of New York-based shoe designer, Miz Mooz? USAToday even fell for the prank, posting it to their site as a news item.
Watch your back (and your computer screens) for pranks and have a Happy April Fool’s Day!