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Census Bureau Reclassifies Commercial Printing as “Miscellaneous Tractor Parts Manufacturing, nsk” (April Fools 2019 Edition)

Monday, April 01, 2019

Press release from the issuing company

Washington, D.C. – Today, the U.S. Bureau of the Census published the long-awaited 2017 Economic Census and printing industry analysts were surprised by the reclassification of “commercial printing” as “Miscellaneous Tractor Parts Manufacturing, Not Specified Kind,” (NAICS 332998).

Although the Census Bureau could not be reached for comment, in a press release announcing the publication of the latest Economic Census, Government analysts noted, in part, “where to put the printing industry has become one of the Bureau’s most recent challenges. Our first inclination was to ignore it and hope that no one would notice, especially now that Dr. Joe Webb has retired. Upon reconsideration, we felt that grouping it with other kinds of big machinery-based manufacturing made the most sense from a logistical standpoint. Tractors...printing presses—when you get right down to it, it’s really all just big stuff with lots of turning wheels and gears and things.”

“I suppose we’re more bemused than anything,” said Frederick Wonkman, economic analyst for Keypoint Intelligence – Infotrends, “although we got the sense that this kind of reclassification was coming.”

Never ones to make idle threats, Printing Industries of America sent a press release to industry trade publications. “Printing Industries of America is disappointed—but not surprised—to learn that commercial print, screen printing, and support activities for printing will now be classified with tractor parts manufacturing. We have long encouraged government agencies to evolve their definition of ‘commercial printing,’ although this isn’t quite what we had in mind.”  




This special report is brought to you by WhatTheyThink's editoral team as part our on-going live April Fools Day coverage. Subscribe for your annual dose of breaking of the news.



By Bruce Richardson on Apr 01, 2019

Apri Fools


By John Jacobson on Apr 01, 2019


That was perfect for so many reasons. While reading it I was thinking to myself, I am never filling out one of those stupid census form again! Funny, because I really believed it until the end, which to me is sad/funny because I could see our government doing such a thing. And lastly in this Internet age where because we read in online, it must be true right!

I put the link on our ODM Facebook page with the announcement that our new machinery color will be John Deere green.


By Karl Loatman on Apr 01, 2019

Reclassify presses as farm equipment? 35 years ago while selling automated printing systems to Cornell University I interviewed the most productive operator I had ever met. She said lugging 60 lb. cases of paper was nothing compared to tossing the 75 lb. hay bundles up into the barn each morning to feed her 75 head of cattle each morning before she punched in. Besides she said the ink was black not brown with that barn smell. For the rest of my career farm women were recommended as the best hires.


By Raymond Prince on Apr 01, 2019

It is a sad day for government statistics. All through college and later in professional life I relied on accurate information from our government. Maybe I need to take Printing Consultant off my business cards and substitute Tractor Parts Consultant. This is not a sad day for the printing industry but a very sad day for our government.


By Eric Vessels on Apr 01, 2019

Ray, that's hilarious man. Your comment may be even better than the story itself. Happy April Fool's Day!


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