Swedish and Norwegian Newspapers to Skip April Fools’ Because of “Fake News”


By Kody Fairfield

When a political climate becomes so toxic that people adjust their lives for fear of aiding and abetting a negative connotation, people everywhere need to reanalyze the power they concede to others, which is used to control a narrative. Such is the case today with the climate around “fake news,” as people and media outlets strive to avoid being labeled by the now infamous, and over used phrase.

The Swedish newspaper the Local is reporting that Swedish and Norwegian newspapers have announced that they will refrain from the tradition of publishing April Fools’ Day jokes this year over fears that it might spread “fake news”.

Magnus Karlsson, editor-in-chief at Swedish daily Smålandsposten said on its website that he doesn’t want the newspaper’s brand “to be spread with a potentially viral and erroneous stories,” reported the Local.

“We work with real news. Even on April 1st,” he said.

Now, several local daily Swedish newspapers including Dalarnas Tidningar, Hallpressen and Västerbottens-Kuriren have refrained from publishing April Fools’ Day jokes, explained the Local.

“Historically, we’ve had super successful April Fools jokes. But because of debates and discussions about the media’s credibility being connected to fake news, we didn’t want to do it this year,” Ingvar Näslund, editor-in-chief at Västerbottens-Kuriren told Swedish news agency TT, the Local explained.

Erik Berger, editor-in-chief at the daily Jonköpings-Posten told AFP that his newspaper would “write in (Saturday’s) edition” about why they won’t publish such jokes.

The Local also mentioned that Sweden’s neighbor, Norway, also had news organizations, NRK,  Aftenposten, VG and Dagbladet, which are choosing to avoid the “fake news” perception which may be given off on April Fools’ Day.


Øyulf Hjertenes, editor at the local daily Bergens Tidende, told NRK that in a climate where “false news is spreading, it would be a mistake on our part” to publish jokes on April 1.

Kristin Monstad, publishing editor at Drammens Tidende, added: “What is written in Drammens Tidende must be true.”

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