April Fools Day hoaxes and pranks have always been a regular part of our lives on one day of the year. Many pranks of past years have tricked thousands of people, including the supposed purchase of the Liberty Bell by Taco Bell and BBC's announcement that spaghetti was being grown on trees in Sweden. But as the internet has exploded, doorways have opened for websites to dream up their own April Fools Day pranks. Here is a list of some of the top pranks that internet has seen on April 1.
1. Google's April Fools Day jokes began in the year 2000 and have since become very detailed and expansive. Perhaps one of the best of these pranks was in 2008 when Google announced it was partnering with the Virgin Group to create "Virgle", a project to put people on Mars to live. The hoax was complete with videos of the CEOs of both companies discussing Virgle as well as an application page for users who were interested in the project.
2. The popular video sharing site YouTube got involved in the online April Fools Day action in 2009 when certain linked videos were changed to give users a "new viewing experience". When users clicked on a video in the Recommended For You section, for example, the video would load and play upside down. Additionally, any video could be flipped by adding "&flip=1" to the video's URL.
3. ThePirateBay, one of the most popular indexes of BitTorrent files on the internet, created its own April Fools Day hoax in 2009. The site is unofficially known for being a place where copyright-infringing movies, music, and more can be found, which has obviously landed it in trouble with groups in those industries. In 2009, ThePirateBay changed its homepage to display the Warner Bros. logo, a heart, and the PirateBay logo next to each other. The implication was that Warner Bros. was taking over ThePirateBay, leading many users to be shocked at their site's change of stance.
4. As a web design and development publisher, SitePoint is an influential source of information for many. So when an article posting appeared on April Fools Day in 2009 stating that the internet would be shut down at 11:59 PM on that night, many were in for a surprise. The article instructed people to close down all applications before the shutdown to avoid damage.
5. The many users of the online discount store, Woot, got quite a shock when they viewed one of the day's featured items. The hoax was revealed when a $3.00 item also came with a $1,000,000 shipping charge!