April Fools' day: What the media is ‘reporting’

Which media houses tried to pull one on you this April fools?

It’s April Fools' day again, and if you’re a particularly gullible person, you’re likely to be the victim of a prank or two over the course of the day.

But it’s not just family and friends that are looking to pull one over you; media houses are too. With the amount of fake news spreading over the internet daily, one should be extra cautious today, of all days.

Here’s a look at some of the day’s April Fools' stories.

Touch the George Cross and it's a sure way of getting the Maltese cross
Touch the George Cross and it's a sure way of getting the Maltese cross

MaltaToday’s own April Fool’s story reported that British MP ‘Alistair Dodding’ had filed a motion to revoke Malta’s George Cross over the role Joseph Muscat played in the Brexit negotiations. The George Cross was awarded to Malta by King George VI to the island's Governor, Lieutenant-General Sir William Dobbie in 1942 and became part of Malta’s current flag design in 1943.  

Since publishing the story, MaltaToday has received some complaints, with one individual saying they were planning on writing a letter to the British Parliament in protest until they realised it was a joke. Others complained the story was "in bad taste". Perhaps the George Cross is a little too personal for some?

The Malta Independent announced that noisy petards were set to be banned from 2020 – perhaps too good to be true. The paper reported that the upcoming summer festa season would be the last to include noisy petards if a proposal put forward for public consultation were to be implemented in the coming days.

Lovin Malta printed a one-day newspaper
Lovin Malta printed a one-day newspaper

Lovin Malta went one step further and launched its own ‘newspaper’ – for one day only of course. The media house printed 20,000 copies, which can be collected for free from a wide range of outlets across the island.

The newspaper included a survey which asked respondents about who they were likely to vote for in the upcoming MEP elections. The ‘newspaper’ also asked respondents whether they would be open to voting for Law Commissioner Franco Debono should he choose to run as an independent candidate.

The former PN MP seems relatively happy with the result, announcing on Facebook that he will be running as a candidate in the 2019 MEP elections.  

inews cautioned owners of large cars to beware. According to the site licenses for large cars are set to increase. It said that licences could double, to discourage people from using them in a bid to addressing Malta’s traffic problem.

Independence for Gozo: Is it one way of ditching the tunnel project?
Independence for Gozo: Is it one way of ditching the tunnel project?

Illum 'reported' that Gozo could be going for full independence from Malta. According to the newspaper, cabinet will tomorrow be presented with a 100-page document which will propose holding a referendum on Gozitan independence before the end of the year.

Good thing this has come up now, the country might save itself a few hundred million on a tunnel.  

'Pranks' from around the world

Shutterstock plans a physical library - Shutterstock is celebrating April 1 by stepping away from its digital heritage and promising to open a massive brick-and-mortar stock library full of physical images of tube socks and disgruntled ostriches.

Google Maps snake game
Google Maps snake game

Google Maps snake game - The Google Maps app turned into an old-school video game with the addition of a "Play Snake" feature. Tap on the snake icon hit play and choose from a selection of destinations, including San Francisco, Tokyo and Cairo. It puts you in control of a red double-decker bus, streetcar or other city-appropriate mode of transportation. You then have to snake around and pick up passengers. It's a fun bit of retro entertainment.

Spotify got a disco makeover
Spotify got a disco makeover

Spotify's Discover Weekly - Spotify's weekly playlist is getting a disco makeover for April Fools' Day. The streaming service even changed the name to Discocover Weekly.

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