A little while ago, Google put a UFO in its logo and a lot of people went nuts, claiming Google was promoting flying saucer nonsense. I figured, hey, it's Google, and it's probably just a little joke. And it was; it was an homage to an old video game called ZeroGundam Wing ("All Your Base Are Belong To Us").
So the other day when Google put crop circles up, I figured it was another joke. Still, I saw a lot of people ready to storm Mountain View with pitchforks and torches. Turns out, yup: another joke and homage.
Hey folks, it's Google. I think they've earned a wee bit of trust in these issues.