How April Fool’s Day Keeps the Internet Conspiracy Machine Alive

There’s nothing wrong with taking everything you see online with a healthy dose of skepticism. But sometimes, skepticism can go too far.


Episode Notes

April Fool’s Day is every brand’s favorite holiday. Social media and PR teams get to make all the jokes their marketing department can come up with and face few repercussions. But it’s not all fun and games. On the show today, Rachelle and Madison talk about what nonsense the brands are up to this year, why we’re so easily taken in by internet hoaxes, and how skepticism can harden into something darker.

Podcast production by Daniel Schroeder.


About the Show

Join Rachelle Hampton twice a week as we gaze deep into the online abyss—and tell you what’s gazing back.

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  • Rachelle Hampton is a culture writer and reporter at Slate and co-host of ICYMI. Her work has appeared in the New Republic, Pacific Standard, Smithsonian Magazine, and In These Times. She still hasn't recovered from Tumblr’s demise.

  • Madison Malone Kircher is a senior writer at Slate and co-host of ICYMI. She was previously a staff writer at New York magazine, where she covered internet culture and edited New York’s Approval Matrix. Her work has appeared in Vogue, Vulture, and the Cut. Madison lives in Brooklyn, where she regularly drops her phone on her face watching TikToks in bed.