Google Isn't Taking Part In April Fool's This Year
Google is known for their elaborate April Fool's Day jokes, but this year will be without the same laughter because of the coronavirus pandemic.
According to Business Insider, Google chief marketing officer Lorraine Twohill sent a memo to managers saying the tech giant would be skipping its annual jokes this year.
With millions around the world relying on Google to provide factual information about coronavirus, Twohill advised managers to "save the jokes" for next year.
"Take the year off from that tradition out of respect for all those fighting the Covid-19 pandemic," the memo said.
"Our highest goal right now is to be helpful to people, so let’s save the jokes for next April, which will undoubtedly be a whole lot brighter than this one."
A similar memo is believed to have also been sent to Google's marketing teams.
Google began its tradition of April Fool's pranks in 2000 with the 'MentalPlex hoax', which told users to project a mental image of what they were searching for while staring at a GIF.
One of 11 error messages would then appear on the results page, ranging from 'Error 466: Multiple transmitters detected. Silence voices in your head and try again' to 'Error 008: Interference detected. Remove aluminum foil and remote control devices'.
In 2004 the tech company advertised job opportunities for a fictitious research centre on the Moon, while a year later 'Google Gulp' was announced as a drink that would optimise a person's use of the search engine by making them more intelligent.
In 2010 Google introduced an 'Animal Translator' to its language translator and kept to the animal theme in 2014 when it advertised for a 'dogengineer' on its careers page.
This is not the first time Google has foregone April Fool's jokes out of respect for a world crisis.
After the 2011 Japan tsunami, Google used the day to showcase never-before-seen drawings from its 2009 competition 'What I Love About Japan'. The entries had been drawn by Japanese schoolchildren.
"We promised that only the top prize winners would be featured on Google, but as this is the only day where lies are forgiven, we have obtained the other children's understanding,' Google said at the time.
"This year's April Fools joke has been postponed until next year. Next year's April Fool's joke has been postponed until the year following that."