Media throws itself into April Fool’s Day

Australian media has thrown itself into April Fool’s Day with reports of everything from Melbourne bidding to host the running of the bulls to Google’s move into sport.  

Google Australia’s contribution to April Fool’s Day was using its official blog to announce the creation of the gBall:

“With inbuilt GPS, motion sensor and artificial intelligence capabilities, the gBall has a number of amazing features, including the ability to measure kicks, get kicking tips, notify talent scouts and locate your lost ball on Google Maps.”

PR agency Access announced their new April Fool’s Day client, Mayhem, with a brief of revamping the image of bikies:

Mayhem specialises in two-wheeled social events and activities, and has appointed the agency in an effort to distance itself from the rising tide of negative media surrounding bikies.  

“Just because you ride a bike doesn’t mean you are a bad person. Mayhem has plenty to offer the community and we have advised each member to spend their $900 government stimulus payment on stuffed toys for deserving local children,” said Access PR managing partner Andrea Kerekes.

 Mayhem plans to introduce a digital PR campaign to drive membership. Mayhem chief executive officer Goonie Patterson said: “When we heard Access PR was going to do a digital campaign we wondered how much you could achieve with just a middle finger, but they explained it involved the internet.”

Virgin Mobile announced that Rob Van Winkle (rapper Vanilla Ice) has taken over as its CEO from Peter Bithos. According to Bithos:

“It may be a surprise to some, but Rob and I go a long way back.  Amongst many other things, he taught me how to stop, collaborate and listen.  He showed me how to keep my composure when its time to get loose and gave me the confidence to grab my nine when all I heard was shells.  I couldn’t wish for a better ninja to take over the role.”









Advertisers also got in on the April Fool’s act. Artline pens have an ad in the SMH announcing:

“Now with microchip tracking. If one goes missing you can go online and track it within a metre, anywhere on earth,”

And Stihl Power Tools placed a “consumer notice” ad in Sydney’s Daily Telegraph urging:

“To ensure your tool retains its serious qualities, it’s best you do not approach, pick up or attempt to start your Stihl tool prior to 12pm. They are serious tools and the morning is far from serious.”

vegemite-donutDonut King announged a vegemite donut:

“Our taste tests have proven that the salty, classic Vegemite flavour creates a taste sensation when coupled with our sweet, vanilla glazed donuts. The combination might sound slightly horrifying, but I can assure you we’re expecting this to be a real hit with Aussies – it’s surprisingly delicious!”

In New Zealand, KingSt Advertising announced that Hugh Hefner was taking a holiday home in the country. (Hat-tip: Campaign Brief).

Other examples included Nine’s Today Show announcing speed wardens would start wearing Speedos, a plan for MPs to offer free baby sitting, ABC radio announcing a plan to dam the Yarra and a stunt by Gold 104.3FM in Melbourne to wrap cars in shrink wrap.

Some people formed the view that Mumbrella’s coverage of a Twitter Tax was also an April Fool.


Travel Today reports that British backpackers arriving in Australia will be subject to compulsory de-lousing when they arrive at the airport.

The Guardian newspaper in the UK has announced that it is ditching its print newspaper and becoming Twitter only:

“It has also radically democratised news publishing, enabling anyone with an internet connection to tell the world when they are feeling sad, or thinking about having a cup of tea.”

And nineMSN says its plans to use a slimmer version of its “Buddy” Messenger icon:

“Calculations made on the popular digital cartoon character show it to have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 33 in its current state, meaning Buddy would be clinically obese if it were a real person.  Through modifications to the circumference of Buddy’s torso, ninemsn has created a slimmer, more buff version representing someone within a healthy BMI of 23.”



Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.