In fact, as the severity of the virus increases every day, some governments — such as Thailand, Taiwan and India — have placed a law-enforced ban on coronavirus pranks.
April Fool’s day has been cancelled this year as the world battles to slow down the spread of coronavirus.
Thailand have even threatened jail time to those who spread potentially harmful rumours and believe in the interest of public health that jokes on the pandemic should be forcefully banned.
The origins of the tradition are hazy, but it is undoubtedly the most light-hearted, and underrated, days in the calendar year.
However, 2020 has been anything but normal. From our own bushfires to the current coronavirus crisis the apocalyptic global landscape leaves us wishing this year to have just been one big joke. Thus, its only right to question; is celebrating April Fools’ day simply abiding by century-old traditions, or is it deeply insensitive amid the coronavirus pandemic?
Google, the reigning king of the tech-world and April Fool’s jokers in their own right, have spoken and set a moral precedent for other businesses and individuals to follow. Every April 1st computer-geeks and digital-jesters wait in anticipation to see what hoax, joke or game google will have released – check out an extensive list here.
The tech giant has announced that they will not be pranking users this year. The head of marketing, Lorraine Twohill, commented that it wouldn’t be right to continue the Google-tradition given the current global pandemic.
“This year, we’re going to take the year off from that tradition out of respect for all those fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. Our highest goal right now is to be helpful to people.”
It’s only right to hold back the jokes and memes, however tempting they may be in a world where stockpiling is a global reality and toilet paper has become a currency of itself. Let’s all take Google’s advice and “save the jokes for next April, which will undoubtedly be a whole lot brighter than this one”.