Many in the industry pulled the plug on April Fools’ Day pranks in 2020 as tension from the emerging COVID-19 pandemic was high, Google included. Now, for the second year in a row, Google is skipping April Fools’ Day 2021.

An internal memo sent by Google’s VP of global marketing, Marvin Chow, explains that the company will continue its “pause” of April Fools’ Day pranks in 2021 as “much of the world” is still dealing with “serious challenges” during the pandemic. The message, obtained by Business Insider, reads:

Throughout the past year, I have been so inspired by how helpful our products, programs and people have been during humanity’s toughest times. We’ve done it with sensitivity and empathy, reflecting the range of challenging experiences so many are experiencing globally.

As you will remember, last year we made the decision to pause our longstanding Google tradition of celebrating April Fools’ Day, out of respect for all those fighting COVID-19. With much of the world still grappling with serious challenges, we feel we should again pause the jokes for April Fools’ Day this year. Like we did last year, we should continue to find appropriate ways to bring moments of joy to our users throughout the year (e.g. Doodles, easter eggs, etc.)

Google has confirmed that the message is genuine.

Notably, we believed we had spotted one of the company’s potential pranks in Stadia earlier this year. The prank would have teased the game-streaming platform’s ability to stream games on 56K internet connections. Google has confirmed to us shortly after publication that Stadia will not feature any April Fools gags this year.

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