Washington, D.C., April 2, 2014 – Today the Federal Bureau of Silly Statistics (FBSS) announced that April Fools pranks were down by a precipitous sixty percent over last years pranks. This continued a disturbing trend from previous years, which has seen a decline in reported pranks every year since the peak prank year of 2000.
“It’s disturbing, really” said FBSS spokesperson George Grossfanny. “What does it say about us as a society that we no longer care about pulling pranks that totally mess with people’s heads?
Reasons for the decline in Aprils Fools pranks are unclear. However, there are several theories. Dr. Wacky Gerbilshorts, professor Emeritus of Holiday College, believes the lack of Aprils Fools pranks is a symptom of the larger problem of the death of satire in America. “Just watch any news broadcast today” Dr Gerbilshorts explained, “and see if anything they report actually sounds real. Particularly when they report on the doings of our political leaders. I mean, some of our politicians should be deeply grateful they got elected into public office. They couldn’t qualify for any job that required even a high school education. How many of those fools can even string together three words into a coherent sentence?”
Editor Stinky Burgerjuice of the supermarket tabloid World News Daily agrees. “Do you have any idea how hard it is now-a-days for us to come up with stuff that makes us different than main stream news outlets” he asked. “I mean, publishing alien abduction stories used to be our bread-and-butter news filler. Then CNN comes along and spends several days speculating that Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 may have disappeared due to alien abductions! How the hell can we compete with that? In the future, why would any potential reader consider us to be different than CNN?”
University administrators and professors mostly mourn the decline in pranks, but are also somewhat grateful. “It used to be” said Dean D. Martin of Gotham State University, “our professors and even senior administrators were the butt of many April’s Fools pranks by our students. While it was fun to see the work of young creative minds, the clean up was sometimes annoying.” Martin reminisced about his own days as a student “we really used to pull off some great pranks back in the heydays of the 70’s. Almost anything was fair game, and even some professors would pile on and join the students. But the campus police were usually pretty cool back then. Now-a-days, they’re just likely to pepper spray some kids trying to have a little fun.”
Some experts also blame technology for the decline in Aprils Fool pranks. “Back in the 70s and 80s people could call a real live telephone operator and ask trick questions” said Ms. Flunky Buffalospew, spokesperson for the National Society of Practical Jokesters. “Today, if you can even get through to a real live operator you have to punch through multiple layers of computer voice tree numbers, and by the time you get to the real person you’ve forgotten your question.” For example, Buffalospew admitted that the old standby prank of calling a tobacco company operator and asking if they had “Prince Albert in a can” is essentially not practiced anymore. “telephone pranks used to be our staple of practical jokes” she said. “But, you have to evolve. Technology changes and practical jokesters have to change with the times. We’re working hard to develop new practical jokes that take full advantage of modern technology. There are real possibilities with social networking sites, and we expect to introduce some mind-blowing pranks very soon.”
Overall, experts agree that Aprils Fools pranks should re-surge in future years, with new pranks using emerging technologies that would outshine anything that has been done before. Grossfanny explained “The really great aspect of newer technology is that one person can pull a prank that affects many more people than before. Why, one person who understood technology could prank a major bank into issuing every one of their depositors a million dollars! Just think of the havoc that would cause!”
Editors Note: This article was supposed to be released yesterday, but was delayed due to someone planting a grass garden in the lead reporters keyboard.