The goal of this blog series is to factually prove or disprove rumors, myths and misconceptions in the Disney-verse. Last week in anticipation of April Fool’s Day we shared with you our tips on how to sniff out a Disney related April Fool’s Day joke in our article “TMSM Mythbusters: Slight of Link And Mickey’s Bus System.” This week, to hopefully put an end to confusion created last Friday in the Disney-verse, we are going to tackle a good number of last week’s Disney related April Fool’s Jokes.
Rarely do you see non Disney websites using Disney as the topic of their April Fool’s jokes. This year though the tattoo related blog “Inked Mag” got the Disney-verse good with their April 1st gag. To say the Disney-verse was knee jerk reacting to Inked’s article would be a huge understatement. People were flipping out in Facebook groups, sharing the article every where and even attacking the Disney Parks on their Facebook pages for the “alleged” ban.
Article Exert: Disney Bans Tattoos in Theme Parks ~ 04/01/16 Announced today, Disney theme parks, including Walt Disney World Florida and Disneyland in Anaheim, are banning admittance to anyone with visible tattoos.
Per The Walt Disney Company’s spokesperson for Consumer Relations-Theme Parks Division, April Engañar: “We don’t think that tattoos fit into the image of a wholesome Disney family. For years we have received complaints from concerned parents saying that they didn’t want their children to be subjected to tattoos so this decision has been a longtime coming. We still value tattooed customers, we just want them to cover up before experiencing the Happiest Place on Earth.”
Needless to say once this article was release it became very obvious people were responding to the preview image before reading the actual article. Had they have read the article, the cleverly added “gotcha” would have been seen.
“Sadly, the parks are also removing seven of the pirates from their popular Pirates of the Caribbean ride because they have tattoos. “This is a zero tolerance policy beginning today, April 1st,” Engañar said. “Not even Johnny Depp will be allowed into our parks with short sleeves.”
As you can see they clearly point out that the date of publishing was April First, and even went as far as announcing animatronics would be pulled, which was never noted in the article prior to the article’s conclusion, it was only noted humans with tattoos would be effected. Also as a friend who is fluent in Spanish pointed out to me the person interviewed in the article is named April Engañar, engañar in Spanish means “to trick” meaning the person interviewed was named “April To Trick” or “April Trick” so Inked actually double clued in those who read the article.
NOW just because Inked “gotcha” does NOT mean that Disney doesn’t have rules regarding employees and tattoos, or guests and tattoos for that matter. All guests are able to visit the parks “Resort Park Rules” websites, where they will see that Disney does have the right to refuse entry to people with certain tattoos as the park rules note that “Visible tattoos that could be considered inappropriate, such as those containing objectionable language or designs, are not permitted.” These rules have been on file for as long as I can remember and have always been clearly displayed online and at the parks in their guideline information.
Park Guests are not the only ones who fall under some sort of rules and regulations when it comes to tattoos at Disney. Cast Members also have restrictions on tattoos, which is not uncommon in many business dress codes. Cast Members must adhere to a policy referred to as “The Disney Look”, and per the disneycareers.com website this is how they address tattoos:
“The Disney Look includes but is not limited to, the following requirements: Male and Female- Body Alteration- Intentional body alteration or modification for the purpose of achieving a visible, physical effect that disfigures, deforms or similarly detracts from a professional image is prohibited. Examples include, but are not limited to: visible tattoos, brands, body piercing (other than traditional ear piercing for women), tongue piercing or splitting, tooth filing, earlobe expansion and disfiguring skin implants. Tattoos must be discreetly and completely covered at all times. Jewelry, spacers, retainers, or plugs are not permitted in any body piercing, including non-visible piercings, while working.”
So while we all know this myth is busted, hopefully we have all learned a little bit about Disney’s existing rules regarding tattoos for guests and CMs!
The Rest of the Not True 2016 April Fool’s Day Stories
This year I noticed a bit of a pattern change in how many Disney Blogs presented their April Fool’s Joke articles, and I have to say I was glad to see a change in what had been a very confusing and misleading “gotcha reveals” pattern from certain groups. Instead of hidden “embedded and redirecting” URL’s in April Fool’s articles that took readers to that “gotcha reveal”, several groups that in the past had created a lot of confusion which then led to the spread of a large amount of bad information were more direct with the fact they were kidding. Sadly though there are still a few that enjoy not being as clear as possible with their “jokes.” Please note that the article jokes below were chosen because they still seem to be confusing and misleading people three days later.
- “All Attractions at Disney’s Hollywood Studios to Close Effective This Sunday”
While many attractions closed in the “Backlot” area of Hollywood Studios on April 3rd, the park as a whole did not close. This article writer was nice enough to very clearly state that the story was a joke with the closing ““I can’t believe that all of you fell for another April Fool’s joke. You’re probably the same people who last year believed that we were going to change Cinderella Castle into Elsa’s Ice Palace!”
- “Disney Bounding is no longer permitted at Disney Parks” is another one that had people sharing misinformation all over the social media universe. The article author was also nice enough to add a “haha April Fool!” at the end of the article, but sadly that information came at the end of article wedged into a large amount of click bait, meaning many who elected to read the whole article may have missed the info.
- Cinderella Castle is being torn down, and Spaceship Earth is being turned into a Death Star. Disney would never tear some of the most iconic structures on Earth, especially as they are some of the most photographed icons on Earth. Also, to turn Spaceship Earth into a Death Star (while no offense would be kind of cool) would make no sense as Star Wars Land will be at Hollywood Studios, not EPCOT.
- “The Carousel of Progress is Closing” was another joke that went around. This one was particularly lame because it redirected readers (if they opted to click on the link and try and learn more past the title) to a site that started off with a badly written article that they redirected readers to a badly animated “gotcha.”
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