- 6Up 16Down 8April 1st, 1996. A full-page ad was published in the New York Times, USA Today, Washington Post and 3 other major newspapers celebrating the sale of the historic Liberty Bell.
To help alleviate the mounting U.S national debt, Taco Bell "bought" the Liberty Bell and would be renaming it the Taco Liberty Bell. It would be moved to the Taco Bell headquarters in Irvine, CA where it would be made available for public viewing.
Thousands of shocked citizens inundated Taco Bell and the National Park Service with phone calls.
It was then revealed that Taco Bell played a Nation wide April Fools' prank resulting in 1.1 million dollars in increased sales over the next 2 days for their restaurants.
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New Math In AlabamaAn organization called "New Mexicans for Science and Reason" published a newsletter in April of 1998 featuring an article stating that the Alabama legislature would be changing the value of pi from 3.14159 to the "rounder" number 3.
This sparked enormous controversy throughout the scientific community and academia, resulting in hundreds of calls from around the world to the Alabama State legislature in protest. Many people were surprised anyone in Alabama even knew what pi was.
It was then discovered the original article written by physicist Mark Boslough was meant as a parody of legislative actions regarding the teaching of evolution in schools.
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First Ever Internet PrankIn 1984, a message was sent to Usenet members from chernenko@kremvax.UUCP stating the Soviet Union planned to join the global Usenet network. (Usenet was one of the first forms of the internet before Vice-President Al Gore invented it single-handedly).
This was an unprecedented move that generated press around the world. Russia was joining us. RUSSIA!
Considering the seclusive nature of the Soviets during the Cold War, the announcement was a huge step forward to open relations. After two weeks without word from the Soviet Union, Piet Beertema revealed he wrote the message as a prank.
When Moscow did join the internet six years later it used the domain name "kremvax" in honor of the prank.
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Half Price NewspapersOn April 1st, 1915, The Boston Morning Globe slashed its price in half. The newspaper staff was just as surprised as its readers by this drastic change when it showed up on newsstands.
Apparently, a production worker had changed the value on the paper immediately before it went to print. No one noticed the change until after the papers were in newsstands and over 60,000 copies were sold.
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Loch Ness Monster Found DeadMarch 31st, 1972. Zoologists from the Yorkshire Flamingo Park Zoo were looking for evidence of the Loch Ness Monster. They found a carcass floating in the Loch weighing one and half tons and over fifteen and a half feet in length.
The excited zoologist loaded the carcass of what they believed to be the "Son of Nessie" onto a flatbed for transport to Yorkshire. Police quickly stopped the team since it is actually illegal to remove "unidentified creatures" from Loch Ness.
The discovery dubbed "The Son of Nessie" immediately received world wide attention. Edinburgh scientists soon determined the body to actually be a bull elephant seal from the South Atlantic.
The next day the Flamingo Park Zoo education officer took responsibility for the prank. The seal had died a week prior to the incident at a nearby Zoo.
The prankster held the carcass in cold storage for a week before dumping it into Loch Ness, and then calling in an anonymous tip to his colleagues.
Yorkshire was had.
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