Are April Fool’s Day pranks more annoying or amusing?

Linley SandersSenior Data Journalist
March 29, 2021, 1:00 PM UTC

The beginning of April marks “April Fool’s Day,” a holiday for people who enjoy playing lighthearted practical jokes on each other. America is not quite a nation of eager tricksters, though — a YouGov poll of 3,695 US adults finds that people are split on whether April Fool’s Day pranks are more amusing (45%) or annoying (47%).

Americans under 30 are the only age group to consider April Fool’s Day pranks more comical (50%) than annoying (40%). Men under 30 are especially likely to believe the practical jokes are funny (60%) rather than irritating (35%), while women in the same age group are split (42% vs 44%). All other age groups either lean toward finding the tricks annoying, or are divided on the issue.

Even as Americans are split on whether the April 1 jokes are funny, they like being the prankster (46%) more than being on the receiving end of a practical joke (36%). Two-thirds of those who believe April Fool's Day pranks are amusing (64%) like having jokes played at their expense. Three-quarters of this group (78%) enjoys playing pranks on others. 

Most Americans dislike planks being played on them (59%) with those over 65-years-old being especially likely to say this (64%).  

See the toplines and crosstabs from this Daily Agenda/Direct poll 

Related: Which is correct: St. Patty's Day or St. Paddy's Day? 

Methodology: YouGov polled 3,695 US adults, on April Fools Day questions, “When it comes to April Fools’ Day pranks in general, which of the following comes closest to your view?”, “In general, do you like or dislike pranks being played on you?”, and “In general, do you like or dislike playing pranks on other people?” The survey was conducted on Saturday, March 20 at 5:00 pm Eastern Standard Time and Sunday March 21 at 5:00 pm Eastern Standard Time. Data is weighted on age, gender, education level, race, and political affiliation to be nationally representative of adults in the United States. The margin of error is approximately 2.6% for the overall sample.   

Image: Helena Lopes from Pexels