I'm still coming across April Fool's Day hoaxes from this year. This one ran in Popular Photography Magazine
. The editors of the magazine took a series of classic photographs by masters such as Dorothea Lange and Walker Evans, and then asked (supposedly in all seriousness) 'Can these photos be saved?' They then proceeded to photoshop the images to make them more like what you'd find in modern fashion or entertainment magazines (smoothing out wrinkles, etc.). In the process they transformed Lange's Migrant Mother from a woman burdened down by Depression-era worries into some kind of smooth-faced suburban soccer mom. Readers were outraged. Popular Photography
reports receiving hundreds of letters from indignant readers demanding to know how they could dare deface a classic work of art and call it an improvement.
I think this is one of the better hoaxes from this year because, first of all, it was believable enough to actually get people upset (unlike almost all the other hoaxes this year which weren't believable). Also, its premise was completely absurd. At least, it's absurd if you're halfway familiar with the history of photography and the kind of reverence accorded to Lange's photographs, particularly the Migrant Mother. Real photographers would never, ever dream of improving the Migrant Mother by smoothing out her wrinkles.