Google Engineer Fired for Failure of “Google + Virgin= Virgle” April Fool’s Gag

picture-20.pngGoogle fired the engineer who convinced Virgin Founder Richard Branson and Google Co-Founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin to participate in an elaborate hoax (see press release) inviting individuals to apply to live on a Mars colony sponsored by “Virgle.”

Wired Writer Loretta Hidalgo Whitesides called it the “funniest April Fool’s Day spoof I have seen.” Whitesides is the founder of a local chapter of the Family Circus Fan Club, and has California’s largest reported collection of Alf memorabilia.

david scheydDavid Scheyd, the 28-year-old Google engineer who conceived the gag last February was, yesterday, inexplicably dismissed from his position at Google — a job he held for 4 years. “Scheyd presented the Virgle idea with such passion that we really thought it would be funny,” said Melanie LaForge, a Google spokesperson.

“It was with great regret that we had to let Scheyd go. It became clear yesterday to both Google and Scheyd that the attempted gag was too obvious and failed to amuse even the most affable and simplest minds employed by our company — the NYC media sales teams.”

Scheyd declined to comment except through a written release, in which he attributed the prank’s failure not to its concept but its poor execution. “The poor video deliveries by Branson, as well as Page and Brin, brought a sad and creepy fakeness to what might have been a very funny and believable bit.”

Neither Google nor Scheyd’s spokesperson could confirm if Scheyd had any credentials prior to leading the blunder.

Georgetown Business Historian Professor William Lawler called it “corporate America’s least-funny practical joke by a landslide.”

The only thing less funny than the prank, said Lawler, was the discussion group thread that had such actual unfunny quotes as:

  1. Maybe the cure for cancer and aids is on Mars.
  2. Curing cancer and AIDS would no doubt be a wonderful thing, increasing the quality of life for many.
  3. Consider, however, that once eradicated, there will be other things that crop up, things we didn’t foresee.
  4. There are several Mars analog projects that have been underway for some time, testing and trying to make colonization of the red planet a possibility for humanity’s future.

Scheyd would not confirm rumors that he has been offered a writing job for YouTube comedian Sxephil.

P.S. I’ve just informed that April Fool’s is over, and I’m not supposed to tease people with fake stories. But the ImprovEverywhere guy told me April Fool’s is amateur day. So by writing a fake story on April 2, I’m communicating to you that I’m a pro.

11 Replies to “Google Engineer Fired for Failure of “Google + Virgin= Virgle” April Fool’s Gag”

  1. I don’t know if firing this guy was part of the April Fools Joke, but the video was just sad and made me think, ‘guys, stick to what you know because you just stabbed humor bloody in the heart.’

    google and virgins stock should drop.

  2. First, why do we call these dorks “engineers”? Engineers my spreading black butt. My dad was an actual engineer. These trade school AV (audio visual club) knob-polishing button pushers are no ‘engineers.’ Puhleeeze!

    That aside, I had a good time spam-commenting those who submitted video responses to this prank video, begging the applicants for Mars travel to take my annoying nephew with them if they were selected to go:

    “Good luck! If you DO get to go, puhleeze take my annoying nephew with you! He’s a big, corn fed boy, so if you run into any Martian monsters up there, just feed him to them. The monsters will get full and leave you alone!”

  3. P.S. Is this post ANOTHER prank? I mean, it seems highly petty of Google to fire a 4-year employee for failing to “amuse even the most affable and simplest minds employed by our company.” What kind of an f’ed-up job requirement is that to hold an ‘engineer’ to? He’s gotta be an ‘engineer’ AND funny too?

    I suspect that there are a lot more simple minds in these outfits than they’d like to admit. Let’s start with the just-out-of-high-school with no REAL life experience booger brains that they put in charge of deciding which videos get promoted or featured.

    Hahaha! Present company excepted. Or accepted. You choose. I’ll never get featured again.

  4. click – this was the best AFJ I’ve seen so far on YT.
    so many hopes dashed by both young and old

    did the big G really fired the guy cause he couldn’t execute a bad joke?

    couldn’t all these bright billionaire boys see the thing was a stink bomb when they read the script?

    sounds very irrational to me. I’m a little afraid to type anything in the google search, what if I misspell something?

    I’m praying hard that Virgin Airline captains don’t make any in flight

  5. I don’t think you understand the concept of April Fool’s Day. It’s only one day per year, that being April 1. Therefore, posts after April 1 attempting to cash in on another’s April Fool’s joke, properly made on April Fool’s Day, i.e., April 1, are per se lame. This is true regardless of the funny quotient (or lack thereof) of the original, properly posted April Fool’s Day joke or the parasitic follow-on joke made on the day after April Fool’s Day.

    This post is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be, and should not be considered to be, funny or humorous in any fashion. And I think I was quite successful in that regard, if I do say so myself.

  6. This is almost as awesome as all the hopes and dreams of all the people who got featured on April Fools day on Youtube.

    Almost there, but still crushes the soul in a twisted way.

    And just as bad as a RickRoll.

  7. This has to be fake. There cannot possibly be anyone who finds Family Circus funny enough to create a fan club. I think Nalts is hilarious (most of the time) and created a FanClubofNalts account on YouTube, but I only attracted 19 subscribers.

  8. Anyone who still owns, much less pose, in a ghost busters tee shirt and napolean dynamite glasses should be fired. its just not natural folks, just not natural. and dont get me started on that hair style!

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