Prince Philip as a pro-EU spokesperson, Europe’s revenge on the UK in the event of a Brexit, and microchipped babies (sorry) – we round up the best of this morning’s April Fools’ gags
Google: Gmail’s ‘mic drop’ feature ends conversations (and employment)
Google introduced a ‘mic drop’ feature to Gmail, where users could end an email thread by pressing a button next to the ‘send’ function labelled ‘send + mic drop’. Introducing the function, Google said: “Simply reply to any email using the new ‘Send + Mic Drop’ button. Everyone will get your message, but that’s the last you’ll ever hear about it. Yes, even if folks try to respond, you won’t see it.” Recipients would then see a mic-dropping minion .gif; all subsequent correspondence would fail to reach the mic dropper.
The prank has backfired badly, though – Google has now removed the button after reports that people have lost their jobs and angered colleagues over the feature.
The Guardian: Royal family considers dramatic Brexit intervention
After the fallout from The Sun claiming the Queen supported Brexit, The Guardian cited an exclusive source who said the Queen wanted to come out in favour of Britain remaining in the EU.
The report told us how the Royals, angered after a series of negative tabloid stories and interference from senior MPs, were already deciding on a spokesperson to lead the campaign.
“Kensington Palace sources say the choice is a tight one between ITV’s news anchor Tom Bradby, who is preferred by Prince William, and Prince Harry’s strong favourites Ant and Dec,” said the report. It went on: “Harry argues that the Saturday Night Takeaway presenters would reach a different demographic and be particularly appealing to ‘people in the north with accents’.”
Virgin: Richard Branson finds buried treasure in the Caribbean
Virgin founder and well-known prankster Sir Richard Branson has indulged in another April Fools’ gag, this time involving buried treasure.
Branson is interrupted by Virgin staff during an interview to say they’ve found something while working on the Carribean – which is later revealed to be a treasure chest. Branson then asks the cameras to stop rolling, fearing the footage might leak.
An excitable Dr Kedrick Pickering, Deputy Premier of the Virgin Islands, said of the psuedo-discovery: “This could be probably the largest find of treasure in the BVI, probably throughout the entire Caribbean, ever! I can only hope that the treasure will be used to support the people of the British Virgin Islands and their overall development and the betterment of the country.”
The Virgin owner has played numerous pranks in the past, including introducing a new line of planes with glass floors.
The Independent: Boris Johnson to create cycle superhighway
The Independent wrote that Boris Johnstone wants to pave over all 2,000 miles of UK canals to create a cycle superhighway. The opening ceremony would include “semi-naked women playing beach volleyball in the middle of the old Grand Union Canal, glistening like wet otters,” according to leaked “evidence” obtained by the paper.
The report went on: “The superhighway would have slow, middle and fast lanes to accommodate ‘Lycra-wearers, middling types and the kind of cyclists you see in Holland, going at a leisurely pace on often clunky steeds’. One branch would link London with ‘Boris Island’, a new airport in the Thames estuary.”
The Scotsman: Scottish babies to be fitted with microchips under new plans
In case you missed The Scotsman’s own April Fool, we (mis)informed the public that all newborn babies would be fitted with a microchip to enable parents to track their children at all times.
We said: “The chip, which would be inserted under the skin at the back of the infant’s neck within an hour of them being born, would allow parents and authorities to keep track of youngsters’ movements from when they are babies until they reach 12 years of age.”
Olaf Ripol, of Scotland Protects Youngsters, wanted the proposals to go further, saying: “The idea that this chip should be removed when a child is 12 is horrifying,” he said. “A youngster should have to prove that they are capable of operating successfully without state intervention for a good 40-odd years before they are allowed to have the chip removed.”
Made Brave: Sniffrr app identifies smells so your nose doesn’t have to
A Shazam-like app from Scots developer Made Brave, Sniffrr can help identify smells for you, such as checking if the milk is off or identify someone’s perfume.
You can even “save smells,” the website says.
“Using state of the art Robotic Nostril Technology,” Made Brave says, “simply point towards the smell, press the Sniff button and take a whiff – your mobile device (available on iOS and Android) will save the smell to your bank, making it available to share with your friends and sniff again and again.”
The Telegraph: England to face Euro 2016 ban if Britain votes to leave EU
According to the Telegraph, England will be banned from competing in Euro 2016 should Brexit become a reality. It spoke of the policing plans for angry fans when Europe closed the borders to the UK if they decided to leave.
“Solidarity is a core principle in Europe, and this is true in the great game of football no less than trade or politics,” says Jurgen Loos, the [fake] former German central midfielder spearheading the Franco-German proposal, “If Britain leaves, then we should be clear: ‘out’ means ‘out’.”
A spokesman for Britain Bigger and Better in Europe added: “Anyone who thinks Uefa referees will treat any of the home nations kindly after a vote to ‘leave’ on June 23 is deluding themselves,” a spokesman added, “we’ll be shown the red card the first chance they get, guaranteeing German dominance for years to come.”
Daily Record: Ayr to get £15million pleasure pier modelled on Brighton
The Daily Record reported that Ayr’s beachfront was to get a fresh new look - modelled on the iconic Brighton Pier.
The Record told readers that Donald Trump had been approached to fund the revamp and that it would include a giant Ferris Wheel and roller coaster rides.
The pier would stretch “150 metres over the water, and the structure will be crafted from wood in traditional style – perfect for promenading holidaymakers.”
Dodgems, coconut shys, candyfloss stalls, ice-cream and hot dogs would all make an appearance, the Record promised.