Happy April Fool’s Day: Recap Of The Web’s Best Jokes & Pranks

If you open up most calendars, you’re not likely to find April 1st listed as an official holiday, but that doesn’t stop most of the western world from celebrating it in one way or another. Though the true origins of the day remain unclear, what IS clear is that cultures throughout history have again and again marked days for hilarity and celebration. Ours is no different!

Though traditionally confined to school classrooms and workplaces, over the past few years Internet culture has taken quite the liking to April Fool’s Day pranks. Often featuring bogus products or outrageous claims, companies and services on the Internet have taken to April Fool’s Day almost as much as they have to Super Bowl commercials.

While you were out pulling pranks with your friends, here are some April Fool’s Day videos you may have missed:

Conan O’Brien Buys Mashable
One of my favorite news sites for startups and social media, Mashable, has been reportedly taken over by Conan O’Brien. Watch the video for his explanations as to why, and be sure to visit Mashable.com soon to check out their “new look.”

Car “Mood Paint” Color
French car company Peugeot shows off their new “Mood Paint” on their latest RCZ. The paint changes with the mood of the driver!

TERII Car Anti-theft
Honda is demonstrating their latest talking gadgetry with this  vehicle theft-deterrent system, featuring “biometric recognition and negotiating tactics to protect against vehicle theft.”

Google Maps 8-bit for NES
Google may take cake this year creating more than seven April 1st product announcements, but this one is easily my favorite. Watch the video, then visit maps.google.com to try it for yourself!

Other 2012 Pranks:
YouTube DVD Collection
Kodak Print Your Own Kittens
Assassin’s Creed for Kinect
Skype For String

Did…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: "GoPro does a great job appealing to my generation because they convince regular people that they are adventurous, like many college kids like to think of themselves." –Male, 22, MD

Facebook continues to evolve to keep up with social platform competitors attracting younger users. The site has announced changes to their standalone chat app Messenger that will transform it into a platform that third parties can develop content and services for, including games, hotel bookings, tickets, and peer-to-peer payments. The new Businesses on Messenger feature would allow users to chat with brands to make purchases and change orders, and could make shopping a more personal experience. Facebook will also be adding the ability to chat with memes and GIFs, features that have proved popular with young consumers on other chat apps. (re/code,Fast Company)

Millennials are wary of investments, and generally anxious about their finances, and some have turned to new services that let them take baby steps into the financial world. More traditional institutions have certainly taken notice. Northwestern Mutual recently acquired LearnVest, a startup that offers free and paid financial planning services including articles, advice, and access to an expert for guidance on spending and budgets. The purchase is the latest in a trend of financial tech companies being snapped up by older, less digitally savvy brands. (FortuneBusiness Insider)

While many startups and sites are working to combat cyberbullying, one app is receiving an enormous amount of backlash for fostering the behavior in high schools. Burnbook allows users to join communities, usually around a school, remain anonymous, and post on topics of their choice. Although the app encourages “jokes, fails, wins, shout outs, revelations, proclamations, and confessions,” posts have been used to target specific people and groups, and threats have been made to at least one school. Some parents and teens are trying to use the app to spread positivity, but those posts don’t seem to outweigh the “gruesome things.” (Mashable)

Toys “R” Us will begin to sell an experience alongside its products with the hope of regaining their footing in the toy industry. Discount options like Wal-Mart and Amazon have hurt the chain’s sales over the past few years, so new plans to revamp stores will add physical play areas and more technology for kids to interact with. The retailer wants to be a place “where kids want to go and play,” and their new prototype store will open later this year. (Bloomberg)

For better or for worse, technology is becoming an intrinsic part of childhood, but boys and girls might not be growing up with the same tech experiences. A new study of parents of kids ages two to nine found that in many cases, parents give their children different devices depending on their gender. Sons were more likely to be given smartphones or gaming devices while daughters received more tablets (73% vs. 65% for boys). Parents were also more likely to use tech to calm down sons, with 48% using a device to help soothe boys when they are upset, compared to 37% for girls. (Kidscreen)

That image at the bottom of our newsletter is a gateway to insights and expert commentary on current and future Millennial trends. Clicking on it takes readers to our daily insights article, available to Silver and Gold subscribers, which illuminates a facet of Millennial culture and helps subscribers to understand the "why" behind the "what." Drawing from our ongoing collection of proprietary data, our deep-dive desk research, and our 10-year history of studying this generation, we figure out what it all means for brands and marketers. (Ypulse)

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