WordPress tomfoolery abounds on April Fool’s Day


April 1st always brings the fun, doesn’t it? Everyone seems to feel the pull to play around and haul out some creative lies on April Fool’s Day. The swath of pranks may only be outweighed by groaning about the day on Twitter.  We abstained on WPCandy this year, though we did catch a few folks in the WordPress community happy to carry on the proud internet tradition of trying to make people believe in things that aren’t true.

Come to think of it, April Fool’s Day on the internet might not be very different from every other day on the internet.

In any case, we’ve gathered up the WordPress pranks we caught on to in the post below, just after the jump. If you caught something we missed, please share it in the comments. While you’re there, why don’t you weight in on April Fool’s Day pranks: are they worth a chuckle or a waste of your time?

Page.ly announces launch of Dog.ly and Cat.ly

Joshua Strebel started the pranks off early this morning with the announcement of Dog.ly and Cat.ly, or a “WordPress service for pets”. According to their press release, “With so many rabid pet owners opening Twitter accounts, creating Facebook pages and even writing blogs, a solution was needed to take some of the pressure off.”

Can’t really argue with them there.

My favorite part of the fake press release is where they discuss the biggest tweaks to the WordPress admin:

Major changes to the interface include a new PawFriendly editor and translation on the fly, allowing dogs to use their familiar barks and cats to purr incessantly until something appears on the page.

You can enjoy the fun on their blog.

WordPress.com Stats trick users with a traffic spike

Here’s one that will take you from excitement, to cold realization, to a knowing smile: reports have come in that WordPress.com Stats users today were treated with an apparent traffic spike, though only in appearance (see the image above for an in-Dashboard example, provided by @spigot on Twitter).

As long as your daily emotional highs and lows don’t depend on your traffic counts, this one shouldn’t have bothered you. In other words, this prank crushed my soul today.

Sucuri Security vulnerability prank brings attention, few laughs

Unfortunately this one falls in the “jokes that didn’t bring much joyous laughter today” category. The post has been redacted, but originally described a WordPress backdoor planted in a non-existent WordPress file. A WPCandy reader provided a quote of the original post:

Btw, we have not reported this to WordPress yet, because we think that it is not just a bug, but a careful planted backdoor (probably by Matt, their lead developer). We will explain it in details (yes, full disclosure). We are also calling all WordPress users to get together and sue WordPress.org, Automattic and everyone else involved.

After a brief spurt of reactions in the comments and on Twitter, Sucuri pulled the prank and apologized for the inconvenience.

Free Mystique theme adds unicorns to post comments

It seems Mystique, a free theme from Digital Nature, added unicorns to the theme’s comment threads today. The method used was explained in a comment on their blog, along with a number of other confused, annoyed users. It’s probably fair to chalk this one up to more fizzle than fun, as well.

Anything we missed?

If you caught a WordPress prank, or even a great April Fool’s Day prank that you enjoyed, chime in and share with us in the comments. If you’d like, weigh in on what’s appropriate to joke about in a prank. What do you think of those listed above?

14 thoughts on “WordPress tomfoolery abounds on April Fool’s Day

  1. …highs and lows don’t depend on your traffic counts, this one shouldn’t have bothered you…

    Indeed. I know people that have left WordPress (for Tumblr e.t.c) because of this Fool.

  2. The dog.ly and cat.ly ones are absolutely hilarious! I like that a lot! As a cat person, maybe I need to set my beasts up with some cat.ly? I could really use the purr translation service! The securi prank scared me… I knew it was a joke, I was just imagining the amount of freak-out occurring on twitter and especially the forums.

  3. Pingback: An April Fool's Journey | Watch the Internet Lose its Mind

  4. I had Mystique theme on a few of my websites, the stupid unicorn thing messed up my search word in google ! I will not use any theme by the author of Mystique, a stupid stunt ! I have used WordPress for years, but I am now having second thoughts. I am looking for another open source cms, preferably not one that pools stupid stunts. Some of us have a lot of readers on our wordpress pages, and it confuses the readers !

Comments are closed.