View Full Version : And that would just be scratching the surface. (4/2)

April 2nd, 2007, 12:23 PM
You folks know me, I have no qualms about tossing my my opinion about like so many seeds, sowing my angst and ire that it might bloom amid fields of apathy. And around this time every year my inner disgruntled Johnny Appleseed storms forth, seed-bag in hand, tossing indignation about with wild abandon.

That is to say I loathe April Fools Day. This was not always so; up until a few years ago I at least bore the "holiday" a grudging tolerance. But, after I started getting more into gaming news, the weight of its pointlessness started to press on me more heavily. Then this weekend, as I looked for gaming news on which to base a comic (since Vanguards wouldn't let me log in), all I seemed to find were april fools articles or articles about what sites were running april fools articles. After what seemed like hours of digging through immature rubbish to find anything of value, I gave up on the endeavor entirely and decided to rebel instead.

Though I prefer not to partake in the custom myself, I don't shun people or certain websites for their personal little april fools jokes. But, when sites and magazines that are considered to be "trusted gaming news sources" run april fools articles, I quickly become incensed. There has to be a disconnect somewhere, a spot where we can escape the immaturity and not accidentally accept it as truth.

In the end I guess my point here is to ask, no beg, ANY news sites not to post april fools articles. But if not... The Irascible Mr.Ted and His Angry Monkey are watching.

April 2nd, 2007, 12:25 PM
April Fools should stick to random pranks played on buddies, not nationally known news sources upon which people rely for trustworthy news.

April 2nd, 2007, 12:29 PM
Awesome comic today. I completely agree.

April 2nd, 2007, 12:31 PM
April Fools has always been my grandmother's (Dad's qwerky side of the family) favorite holiday. Don't know if she's lost interest much over the years since I'm not usually in the neighborhood for it these days, but her idea of a funny April Fools joke when I was around usually involved something related to a sharp poke in the ribs...not overly funny in my opinion, but to each his own I guess.

April 2nd, 2007, 12:40 PM
On one of the other forum sites I frequent, they used the forum software's word filter to swap out commonly-used words for more "humorous" words. That's all well and good in theory, but one of the word replacements actually broke the site (replacing strings that are in the site's URL is bad!), and one of the others was such a common letter sequence that it garbled many other common words that contained the replaced word.

I don't mind April Fool's jokes with gaming sites; as long as it's so over-the-top that it couldn't possibly be mistaken for fact by anyone with half a brain, there's no harm, no foul (like one game that I'm playing announced that, after several years of more-or-less successful operation, they were going to institute a total reset at the end of the month).

But I agree that news sites should be above this sort of nonsense.

April 2nd, 2007, 12:43 PM

You mean there is no "Tinfoil Hat" In WoW? /cry


[I agree with you for the most part Woody, but I still give a little leeway to people, I guess I'm not as jaded as most people.]

April 2nd, 2007, 12:50 PM
If your post disappeared... April Fools.

Erling E.
April 2nd, 2007, 12:50 PM
I find it amusing that a comic artist dislike any sort of holiday dedicated to having fun. ;-)

April 2nd, 2007, 12:51 PM
Think you for finally saying it!

Yesterday was a wasteland for news on so many sites. Slashdot was entirely worthless for 24 hours. Every online company felt the need to make some bad joke as they do every year, even the mothership Google. Now I love a good joke, but certain sites not only hurt their credibility, they also waste time and space instead of being creatively productive.

April 2nd, 2007, 12:52 PM
I've never really seen "making asses out of your readership" as having fun.


Please Note: I don't mind stuff like what Blizzard does, or the models in EQ2 becomming more "streamlined". It's news sites in particular posting april fools articles that I take exception to.

April 2nd, 2007, 12:57 PM
I'm glad April Fools was on a Sunday this year so I didn't have to be anywhere near the internet. The sites that have extended their jokes through Monday simply because of this fact TRULY deserve to be hated ;)

April 2nd, 2007, 01:35 PM
I personally enjoy them. Although its not a news site thinkgeek has some nice ones. http://www.thinkgeek.com/stuff/41/surgestix.shtml

April 2nd, 2007, 01:40 PM
Logging into EQ2 last night to a world full of bobbleheads- funny

Checking a news site to discover an article about filling in Death Valley with water since it's below sea level anyway- not funny

April 2nd, 2007, 01:49 PM
Hmmm, I think it's strange that ppl is so opposed the april fool... I think it's great... I have all my life been used to the media in everyway trying to play april fools on everyone... As Erling E. mentioned.. It has been that way for as long as I can remember. I hope they never stop... One in awhile the news companies comes right out and say it, "One of our news today is a hoax, if you can tell us what it is, you win a prize." As I said... Goody!!! :D I love things like this.... But lately the companies have gone right out and told us which news and what the joke was... No more competitions.. No more fun.... *SIGH*... Awww, well... Have fun y'all...

April 2nd, 2007, 01:50 PM
I agree about this actually. The in game pranks of EQ2 or WoW (Though, I guess it wasnt exactly "In game") are incredibly funny to me. But browsing Fark to see whats going on, was annoying as hell. They had real articles mixed in with the fake ones and after a while I just gave up. They were all really stupid.

Although, the Gmail "Paper Mail" really threw me off... I was like, who the heck would want this... Then I started thinking about it and the more I thought, the more I realized people would want that...

Of course, if I would have read the customer testimonies, I would have realized the joke a lot sooner. But eh.

News should not be faked. Thats all there is to it.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:02 PM
There has to be a disconnect somewhere, a spot where we can escape the immaturity and not accidentally accept it as truth.

Egads! I think you've stumbled across the point. That is, practical jokes are meant to decieve us into beliving something that isn't true, to get us going, prey upon our greatest hopes and wildest fears...and the fact they they are coming from supposedly reliable news media makes the practical jokes even more successful.

Perhaps you'd be more appretiative of the art of the practical joke if you were on the other end of it. Try telling your partents that you were evicted and you're gonna need to stay with them for a couple months.

Or do what I did and tell them that they're gonna be grandparents... but not to my wife's child.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:08 PM
Personally I just don't bother going to the net on April 1st anymore, I just get to peeved off.

Love the comic.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:17 PM
i thought applegeeks.com prank was funny and vgcats.com was ok. the Guild Wars in game prank was a good one too. i was moving around in the world and dropped in to Kamadan to sell a couple of runes i had picked up. i hadn't totally been paying attention then suddenly i realize that instead of my toon being a guy, it was a girl. so i run outside and i'm a guy again. run back inside, i'm a girl. i logged in to my other toons and see the same thing happens to all of them. took a few screenshots but haven't gotten around to adding them to imageshack yet. seeing my male, fo-hawk sporting, Dervish alt turn in to a busty long haired brunette was interesting.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:19 PM
Hehe, yeah, there are some places that shouldn't pull those. Not only are they rather moronic, but it does tend to bring their credibility down a peg or two.

There was a joke played here about 10 years ago, which resulted in 2 radio guys getting fired. They claimed that the producers for "Bull Run 2" would be stopping in town for extra casting. Thousands of people showed up, took days off from work, skipped class, and waited in the stadium for them to arrive. After a few hours, the radio guys showed up and let them in on the gag. Needless to say many people were very upset (some violently) and after a few days, the pair of radio jocks were looking for other work. I thought it was rather funny, but for people to go off like they did, was really out there. I wasn't one suckered in on the gag, but would defend the radio guys for it. None of fooled bothered to check the date...

April 2nd, 2007, 02:21 PM
EQ turned all player modles into red stick figures. Iggy would have fit right in. Made for intersting raiding but everyone had a good time with it. It was funny though to watch new jokes develope out of the old ones and various rumours were spread about how to get regular modles back.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:32 PM
I'm not big fan of April Fools pranks either from news sources either.

It is too bad the bobble head eq2 characters are only for April fools. I actually liked them better than the normal models. They add a sense of fun the game lacks in my opinion.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:34 PM
Consider me noone important, but I personally believe that you are being a little too cynical. Considering that one day out of the year is set aside for this sort of stuff, I think its perfectly alright for the media to have a little fun also. I don't see the harm, provided the gag is in good humor and not intended to be believable, in posting a fake article that is nice for a good laugh. I personally enjoy reading some of the articles online around this time.

It just makes no sense to me that one wouldn't even get onto the internet on April 1st because of this. I mean this respectfully, but LIGHTEN UP. Maybe a break from "Patch 2.1 Change Log," and "More dead in (insert location here)" is not so bad. You describe these articles as "immature," and I think that is completely unfair. You bash these articles because the author wanted to have a little fun or be a little sarcastic for one day out of the year.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:42 PM
I registered an account here just to say "for shaaaaaaaame," though I love your comic.

I've never seen any April Fools jokes on any major gaming sites that were anything less than painfully obvious, and the amount of people that buy into these things and then get pissed off boggles my mind. These sites spend 364 days a year on "normal" things, is it really so wrong if they take ONE day off to spout nonsensical crap?

And how do so many people believe these things, anyway? Yesterday, the WoW forums were absolutely swamped with posts saying "zomg is teh BT attunement/tinfoil hat 4 reals?" If people fall for something that easily, I do see how they could fall for subtler articles on other major sources. This raises a question - do news providers have a responsibility to protect their readers from their own idiocy? I'd say no.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:42 PM
Weird you would say that concidering that games in general is something seen by many as 'childish'. As professional as the gaming press might be it is prob that same 'inner child' that lures them into fake articles of information ment to to devulge into the spirit of the holiday.

Tom foolery abound, to me it's better than indulging true fools on a daly basis.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:47 PM
April Fools Day is one day out of the year. I'm sad to see so many people get upset that news sites were blowing off some steam and having some fun of their own for a change (it's probably one of the few times they can have fun) Take the one day off a year from trolling boards if you don't appreciate a good joke, all the boards will be back to their non-humourous stuff the next day.

April 2nd, 2007, 02:47 PM
The best way ive seen this april fools thing tackled so far (other than "none at all", which is startlingly the amount of suspicion that Arthur Dent had that his friend wasn't from around Manchester as he claimed...hahah sorry, had to throw that out) was around a 2 or 3 page long section in a magazine, clearly separated as an April fools joke (An ambulance chasing lawyer from Florida was included)

April 2nd, 2007, 02:52 PM
Interesting, apparently I'm not the only person that this comic brought out of the woodwork... >.>

April 2nd, 2007, 02:53 PM
I don't like so much the pranks, but I don't mind ANYONE having fun. Why would you be restricted because you are a news source, and who is to say what/who can't participate and who can. Obviously everyone has their own opinion, but I still think people take things too seriously as it is. I would love to be able to do a "fun" presentation that the official "DECK" for work. Bah, life needs more "little" enjoyments.

April 2nd, 2007, 03:04 PM
The Problem is that no one really says "APRIL FOOLS!" at the end of these articals, leaving the people who belive to think its real. Or other times the articals are so formal that no one can really tell if its true or not, so when you find out its not true the Trick part is never really that great.

Thats why I think Woody's right. That and the part about reporting about the arcials that were jokes. Do we really need to know about what jokes other sites played?

April 2nd, 2007, 03:08 PM
I find it amusing, and more than a little ironic, that some people say things such as "lighten up" when they feel their opinion is the correct one.

I haven't told anyone not to enjoy April Fool's day. I also haven't compelled anyone to agree. I illustrated my own view on the matter.

Please note...
I'd be okay with aprils fools articles as long as there is an indication (at the end of the article) that it is indeed an april fools article. Was that not always the fashion of april fools jokes in school? The joke... followed by the disclaimer?

And again, I don't care about april fools jokes on non-news sites: forums, gaming company sites, community sites. As long as the purpose is not "news" I don't care.

April 2nd, 2007, 03:09 PM
When I was in high school we used to run a special April Fools section in our school newspaper. It was an insert and very obvious that it was fake news though. Only the flakiest blonde cheerleaders fell for it I think hehe. :D

At work yesterday I witnessed a rather mean prank a 12 year old girl played on her 8 year old brother. (Just guessing on the ages) She had printed something out on her computer and said it was from our (Gamestop) website. It said we had Wii's available for sale and she walked him into the store with the page before telling him "April Fools." Poor kid didn't believe her by then and had to ask us if that paper was real or not and if we really had an Wii's for sale. I think the poor boy was about to cry. I felt so bad for him. After that I was tempted to say 'yes' to the kids that call every day asking if we have some but I'm not that cruel.

April 2nd, 2007, 03:13 PM
Does anyone NOT feel that their opinion is the correct one? >_>


They shouldn't NEED to put big signs saying "Hey guys the world's not really gunna explode" at the end of each article. :p

April 2nd, 2007, 03:29 PM
The bobblehead mode in EQ2 is toggled on and off by /cutemode.

April fools jokes need to be clear. Its even worse in printed media. I still remember the National Geographic april fool's joke about the new species that had been discovered in antarctica. Supposedly they preyed on penguins by burrowing underneath them and then killing the penguins once they fell into the pit or tunnel or whatever. My brother and I both thought this was a genuine article for a long time. We did not read the magazine except when visiting out grandparents who were subscribers. It actually was not until reading an article about the best april fool's jokes that we found it to be false. Maybe kids today are more aware of media doing this on a regular basis I don't know. Even had I noticed that it was in an april issue, I would not have even considered for a moment that it was a joke article. I don't really find it very funny though. I don't think news sources should do that sort of thing without an obvious and IMMEDIATE disclaimer at the very least.

April 2nd, 2007, 03:44 PM
even GOOGLE had made an april fools joke this year.
I must admit for a bit I actually believed it but then I really decided to bang my head into a wall until sense was knocked into me.
For some reason this comic made me think of the game "Monkey Island"
don't know why, would love to see a comic on it though =p

Andara Bledin
April 2nd, 2007, 04:19 PM
All opinions are right... for the people who express them.

Seriously, though, if you are a company that makes your living by having people depend on the information you report, then it's completely irresponsible to put up a joke column and then not include a comment somehwere within the column that it is a joke.

This is an extreme, but how would you like it if you went to the doctor with stomach pains and they told you you had acute apendicitis and would need an immediate operation? Then, after they let you sweat it out for an hour, they tell you they're kidding and send you off with an antacid and a hearty laugh.

Some things are just a lot funnier in concept than they are in practice, and some things are only funny to those who are already in on the joke. Nobody thinks it's funny to be humiliated.


TVs Frank
April 2nd, 2007, 04:21 PM
This just in, War of the Worlds is fiction.

April 2nd, 2007, 04:33 PM
I was sure the write-up was going to be about how your inbox was over-flooding with horrified gamers writing, "OMGZ!!! Look at what so-and-so says such-and-such is doing!!!" to the point of a complete email-client meltdown.

April 2nd, 2007, 04:35 PM
The War of the Worlds radio broadcast had dislaimers that it was indeed a work of fiction.


Ambrya, I got my fair share.

Andara Bledin
April 2nd, 2007, 04:35 PM
Ah, an outstanding example of something that was a great idea and a lousy event.

Unless, of course, you think that mass panic is a good thing....

[link to an excellent article by someone on AOL (http://members.aol.com/jeff1070/wotw.html)]

[edit to add]

There is a reason that all programs now have disclaimers regularly throughout the program. Not everybody tunes in from the start, and not everybody who does actually pays attention to the initial announcements.


April 2nd, 2007, 04:35 PM
Meh, The internet has never struck me as a very reliable source for "trustworthy news" anyway.

April 2nd, 2007, 04:38 PM
Amen -- I find that most April Fool's jokes aren't funny at all. Yesterday pretty much the whole front page of slashdot was post after post of lame April Fool's tech-related news "stories".

April 2nd, 2007, 04:39 PM
Ambrya, I got my fair share.

I don't doubt it. Sometimes I think the real victims of faux-articles published by new sources on April Fools Day isn't the people who read them and believe them, it's the people they pass them on to who are smart enough NOT to buy into it, and have to somehow (politely or not) break the news to the first person that they are, in fact, a gullible stooge.

Andara Bledin
April 2nd, 2007, 04:44 PM
I almost never trust anything I can't get from two independant sources, but there are millions out there who take everything the so-called experts on the morning entertainment programs say as gospel.

Snopes is practically built on idiots forwarding scare-lore messages taken from badly presented, under-investigated drivel. One of my co-workers (who won't send things to me any more because she didn't like being chastised for spreading false rumors) just sent out the "plastic wrap in the microwave causes cancer (http://www.snopes.com/medical/toxins/cookplastic.asp)" one this morning.


April 2nd, 2007, 05:34 PM
I don't mind the "April Fool's News" stuff as long as it's clearly marked as SATIRE.

There are all kinds of great AF pranks and jokes to go around. It's amusing to me to see what someone will dream up. This year's winner was the story in a Key West paper - clearly marked as a SATIRE PAGE - in which they described how a law was enacted to ban the sale, possession, and distribution of ... alcohol.

To each their own, and I respect the right of everyone to have an opinion - hell we have 278 different kinds of toilet paper on the market because everyone has their likes and dislikes.

April 2nd, 2007, 05:34 PM
Complete ADHD moment here- Woody, you actually did a helluva job drawing a MICH correctly. I notice the oddest damned things sometimes :D

April 2nd, 2007, 05:34 PM
I had good photo reference.

April 2nd, 2007, 05:49 PM
I'm with Woody on this. News is for news. You want to bring the funny? Go do stand-up at a comedy club. Don't put it on the front page of your supposed "news" site.

Erling E.
April 2nd, 2007, 06:29 PM
I quite enjoy finding the April fools articles on various news sites. Its a challenge trying to find them, at least if they have put some effort into it. The now 50 year old BBC report of spaghetti trees is a good one, for instance. There is just something a about a whole world of otherwise very serious news distributors suddenly trying to have some fun that makes me all warm and fuzzy inside. In some strange way it brings forth the children in all of us.

Andara Bledin
April 2nd, 2007, 08:21 PM
That would be fine and dandy if it weren't for the fact that a lot of children are right bastards.

Spaghetti trees is a great article because it is so far beyond the possible that it's just funny. Some of the other stuff that goes around is far too close to plausible to be amusing.


Phainein Terra
April 3rd, 2007, 01:53 AM
Try being a manga/anime nerd. I downloaded like 5 joke subs yesterday. Man it ticked me off hardcore.

April 3rd, 2007, 02:23 AM
It would not be so bad if it wasn't for the thing to spread more and more each year.
Perhaps I am an old fart when it comes to global networking (starting with things like FidoNet). But when you've witnessed the more commercial Internet from around 1995 up till now you do get tired of Aprils Fools by large if you have to witness this every year.

It's not bad in itself save that some people/sites think they have to participate. And the jokes, as a result, suck hard at times.

April 3rd, 2007, 06:11 AM
April Fools is fun, immaturity is not an evil vice by it's very nature. It too has its place, and people should be allowed to partake in it once in awhile.

April 3rd, 2007, 08:41 AM
April fool's news jokes, unless they're really really well done, are just boring frankly. I can't be bothered to waste the energy to hate em. In games, April Fool's jokes are hillarious, especially since you already know (at least on some level) that it isn't real.

April 3rd, 2007, 09:02 AM
I'm normally not one for April Fools jokes, but my roommate had one played on him that I thought was particularly humorous. Purdue University, where we go to school currently, was ranked number 2 in the nation for the most RIAA violations among large universities, and with the recent manhunt RIAA has been undergoing, many of the universities have been under siege. Sunday, I woke up and found my roommate on the computer, checking his e-mail. He looked at me and told me about an e-mail he got from RIAA saying he had illegal files on his computer (as just about every college student has). For us, this was particularly funny, because I have over 250GB, while he has less than 2GB. At the end of the formal e-mail was a link for more information, and when I told him to click on it, a website popped up saying it was April Fools. I hadn't laughed that hard in a long time.

April 3rd, 2007, 09:17 AM
For those of you whose posts have disappeared, I read what you had to say. But in the future if you want to address me specifically, send a PM (that's what the function is there for).

Though I'll remind you, not every april fools article can be deemed as such just by reading it. These articles are often about fake game releases, usually something we've been waiting patiently for, and news that's utterly believable. The fact that 1up.Com has to post a news item titled, "No April Fools: NiGHTS on Wii is Real" supports my position.

So, if you want to send me PMs about it, keep the above in mind.

April 3rd, 2007, 09:41 AM
i agree, posting faulty info when you are a news site is just wrong, sometimes there are lines that need to be drawn...

speaking of lines tho, on the upside to april fools day this year... EQ gave iggy plenty of options for a date :P they turned all the character models into stick figures :P (not a bad idea for a future comic either heheh)

April 3rd, 2007, 10:29 AM
I agree on the April Fools stuff. Some things can be cute like the EQ and EQ2 gags, but I really hate seeing news sites (Tech or otherwise) with April Fools posts. More often or not the approach is to create a post to build excitement about a desired release or an overtly negative article to build anger then you are hit with the "april fools." I find myself overly skeptical when reading tech sites every April 1st.

April 3rd, 2007, 10:29 AM
I'm almost always amused by April fool jokes/pranks by friends and family. Sometimes April fool jokes from entertainment sources manage to be funny as well. I've yet to see an April fool joke from a news source that was anything other than annoying. Hmmm, I wonder if the way every new source of news seems to steadily erode into just another source of infotainment (a word as ugly as the concept it describes) has anything to do with the popularity of these joke articles.

Another venue where April fool always seems to fall flat is gaming forums. Those posts never seem to be noticeably original or creative, and there's already so much begging for attention going on that they're really just more of the same.

April 3rd, 2007, 10:55 AM
I'm gonna have to agree with the news sites not being good at April Fools jokes. They tend to "forget" that not everyone is aware of the date, and that the whole idea is to say *chimming of bells* APRIL FOOLS!! They wait untill they are exposed as liars or days before comming clean about the supossed joke.

The ONLY time I'v seen a news reporter do a good AF joke was in calif.

I never got to hear the report, my friends came over to my place wanting to use my backyard to watch the shuttle land. Yea, I was thinking, right. Like they are going to close 5 to land it. No, I'm told they are landing at the private airstrip just 2 miles away. OK, now I know that's not possible. I check the date, and say nice AF joke guys I'm not that stupid. Talk about pissing off yer friends! They had belived it, Miramar airbase is seven friggin miles away and they acutally thought the shuttle was gonna land at a field that was a square mile or less total area. Well so did alot of people, we watched the news coverage of the fun on tv.

April 3rd, 2007, 11:13 AM
So there's this kick ass radio station in Virginia Beach Va, called FM99 a few years ago their morning show hosts, Tommy and the Bull, decided to pull a huge prank. On the air they stated, that Mt Trashmore (a landfill reclamition site) which is just as much a tourist trap as the rest of VA Beach, was going to explode, due to methane gas. There were several hundred people who heard this, and called it into Emergency services, evacuating most of the surronding area. Oh yeah did i mention this was on april fools day? anyway there where some serious reprecusions to this incident, all over an april fools day joke. So i can see why people take issue with News sites, or reliable news agencies, play what they think are "harmless" April fools day jokes. One of the ramifications, of that joke happened years later, When the twin towers where hit, people refused to believe them, due to their pranks.

On the other hand there are things that are funny like the Black Lair attunement from Blizard or the WHoA game coming out.

April 3rd, 2007, 11:42 AM

For AFD, ThinkGeek created that 8-Bit format tie.

The response was such that they're going to now be making it.

Andara Bledin
April 3rd, 2007, 11:46 AM
Yeah, that tie is classic. Literally!

And I'm looking at what I want to buy from them so I can get that limited shirt.


April 3rd, 2007, 12:06 PM
There was something else pretty big out there, where the company started something as a joke, but the response was huge so they ended up doing it anyway.

April 3rd, 2007, 12:51 PM
The site I go to for MMO news went pink with hearts saying they had been bought out and will be changing format to a girl gamer point of view. They had me for a few minutes on that one. :)

Gawd I dislike pink.