11

I was browsing trough the hot questions and I've stumbled across this question. One of the comments mentioned checking the date, but the bells didn't ring until I read the accepted answer.

Regarding the site from the question, it isn't stated anywhere that it is a prank, so it could be just a coincidence.

In my opinion this isn't a good user experience as the user may not know about this day, as it is not a public holiday as stated by Wikipedia, or they could just be busy and forget about it. In fact maybe they don't like jokes, because they are a mature person who just wants to get their work done, or maybe they are a robot.

  • 2
    No. // Could be an April Fool's answer. – Confused Apr 1 '16 at 17:54
  • 1
    Just curious as to whether April Fool's day is more of a western thing, as I don't normally find materials associated with this in eastern cultures or websites. – Michael Lai Apr 4 '16 at 4:00
8

Put very simply: it depends.

If it harms productivity or alienates your users then, no, it's not a good idea.

It, on the other hand, it emphasises the personality of your product and/or fosters a more intimate relationship between your users and your product then, yes, it's a great idea. Good examples include the 'Visit Funky Town' easter egg on Google Maps and the Virgin America Logo Redesign.

  • A good example of the 'harms productivity' from today already! theverge.com/2016/4/1/11344044/… – Midas Apr 1 '16 at 8:07
  • Oh god, I can't imagine how to receiver of the e-mail (Jonathan Anderson) felt about that. – Emanuel Vintilă Apr 1 '16 at 8:13
  • 1
    One might argue that the Virgin America Logo Redesign took things a little bit further than they needed to... – Michael Lai Apr 4 '16 at 4:01
4

It can be a great user experience, if it is done well. In addition to April Fool's Day jokes, Easter Eggs can fall into this category.

What does "done well" mean?

  1. It is not obtrusive, and does not cause consternation (or worse!) to the user. Gmail's "Mic Drop" feature is an excellent example of how not to do this -- it was obtrusive, users accidentally clicked on it, and there were data loss bugs.

  2. It is funny. If you have to explain the joke, it's not funny.

  3. It makes your users feel like they're part of something. Easter Eggs can be excellent at this because your users have to do something to find them; discovery of a secret often makes people feel like they're a part of something. A joke about a shared interest can also make your users feel like they share something.

In 2015, Netflix's binge-watching PSAs were a well-done joke. They only came up if you watched more than 2 episodes of a television show back-to-back, so they were appropriate in context. They were short, and thus not obtrusive. They were topical, they used actors from Netflix series, and they were self-deprecatingly funny. The reactions were positive, people talked about it, and people felt good about Netflix.

0

Yes I agree with the top rated answer here... It really depends.. But references to holidays that are outside of your users' culture can be alienating and cause confusion. The last thing you want are users feeling like they can't trust your product.

0

As with most jokes it comes down to how you tell it. But I can't believe that there's any UX rules around it - you'll end up like David Brent if you try and apply rules to humour.

  • If your users get it, then it's good UX. Even a bad joke will be accepted on April 1st.

  • If your users don't get it, then it's bad UX.

So you'd better hope that your pointy haired boss is good at telling jokes.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.