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Aqua Teen Stunt Costs Turner and Agency $2M 557

Posted by Zonk
from the can-you-say-extortion dept.
evw writes "The NYTimes reports that the Turner Broadcasting System and the ad agency responsible have reached a $2M settlement with the city of Boston and state and federal agencies that treated the light boards placed around the city as an act of terrorism (as covered earlier on /.) Half of the money is to cover direct costs associated with the response. The other $1M goes to 'goodwill funds' that will be used for response training and public outreach."
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Aqua Teen Stunt Costs Turner and Agency $2M

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  • by adam (1231) * on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:13AM (#17901526)
    I'm sure I won't be the only person to reply and point out that hours of national TV exposure (and subsequent stories, etc) are worth at LEAST $2M. As they say, "no press is bad press.."

    Furthermore, think about how many people (on the fringes of their target demographics) that hadn't heard of ATHF are now keenly aware of the show? With the movie [imdb.com] coming up.. yea.. $2M is cheap.

    FTFA: "Ms. Coakley said the amount was more than the state would have obtained through litigation. The settlement shields the companies from civil or criminal liability by state and local agencies, Ms. Coakley said."

    ..and frankly, in the end, they may not have been liable for any of this anyhow.. since it was mostly just the Boston police/whomever being semi-retarded. But $2M is a small price to pay for the publicity they got, and now the goodwill of paying "more than their fair share" towards homeland security and what the authorities even term as "goodwill funds."

    Too bad ATHF jumped the shark a bit (IMHO) after season 3. And even more bad that the two poor schmucks working for the ad agency are still charged with crimes. They should be set free, and whatever moron phoned in a litebrite as a "bomb" (and the corresponding police moron who agreed with him) should be looking at potential liability. WTF is wrong with our government. Does anybody remember the post-9/11 homeland security debacle with Tom Ridge reccomending people use duct tape and plastic sheeting [chicagotribune.com] to protect themselves from terrorists.. and then several people dying by asphyxiating themselves in their own homes? The sad fact is that our society has become so stupid and centered around sensationalist events that terrorists don't even need to make bombs anymore.. just scatter throughout several major cities a few dozen briefcases with litebrites affixed to them, and watch the panic ensue.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      International TV exposure. It's all over Europe, too, and probably other parts of the world.
    • Does anybody remember the post-9/11 homeland security debacle with Tom Ridge reccomending people use duct tape and plastic sheeting [chicagotribune.com] to protect themselves from terrorists.. and then several people dying by asphyxiating themselves in their own homes?
      Butbutbut... duct tape fixes ANYTHING!!!
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by montyzooooma (853414)
      "WTF is wrong with our government. Does anybody remember the post-9/11 homeland security debacle with Tom Ridge reccomending people use duct tape and plastic sheeting to protect themselves from terrorists.. and then several people dying by asphyxiating themselves in their own homes?"

      Anyone have a link to an example of anyone asphyxiating themself after duct taping their house? (And there's a sentence I didn't think I'd be typing when I got up this morning.) I did a quick google but ashpxiating and duct ta

      • by scatters (864681) <mark@scatters.net> on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @05:03AM (#17901794)
        Snopes has an article sourced from AP about 3 Israelis who died as a result from suffocation in a duct tape and plastic sheeted room. Technically they died because their coal burning heat source consumed all of the oxygen, but that probably only changed the length of time before they ran out of air...

        http://www.snopes.com/rumors/ducttape.asp [snopes.com]

        Also, the article summary states that Boston and the feds are treating the sign board debacle as an "Act of terrorism". TFA, uses the term "fears or terrorism". For fuck's sake, can we have a little honesty in the headlines? Pretty please.

        And lastly, it's a little bit ironic that the agency responsible for the campaign is called Interference, Inc...

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by ArcherB (796902) *
        ...Also, I believe what the GP called "reccomending people use duct tape and plastic sheeting to protect themselves from terrorists" was nothing more than an official (I don't even think it was Tom Ridge) recommending duct tape as part of an emergency kit to have around... along with fresh water, canned goods and so on. He was saying it was good to have for any type of disaster, not just terrorism. Some people took it out of context and turned their house into a fish bowl. However this was not Tom Ridge'
    • by Chmcginn (201645) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:47AM (#17901720) Journal
      I can agree with most of your post. But... seriously...

      Too bad ATHF jumped the shark a bit (IMHO) after season 3.
      It's a TV show about a talking wad of meat, an asshatish milkshake, and a extra-large order of french fries that can throw lightning. I would say season 3 was just getting comfortable with the appropriate level of surrealism.
    • by aussie_a (778472) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @06:22AM (#17902190) Journal

      As they say, "no press is bad press.."
      Has the press in America even been negative? The one news piece I saw of it highlighted the ridiculousness of the government's response to the advertisements. So $2M for good press in circles that quite likely would have gone unawares of the show is a pretty good deal I imagine in anyone major company's book.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by badasscat (563442)
        Has the press in America even been negative? The one news piece I saw of it highlighted the ridiculousness of the government's response to the advertisements. So $2M for good press in circles that quite likely would have gone unawares of the show is a pretty good deal I imagine in anyone major company's book.

        First of all, Google the story using Google News. You'll turn up about 80% of all the news reports done anywhere on this. Browse through them - many of them are quite negative.

        Second, I wish I'd had t
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by PopeRatzo (965947) *

      Too bad ATHF jumped the shark a bit (IMHO) after season 3
      Too bad the expression "jump the shark" has jumped the shark.
    • by Broken scope (973885) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @09:47AM (#17903540) Homepage
      Oh please, for a country that had made itself "safer" since 9/11 we are still scared shitless by our own shadow on a daily basis. We are going to live like this too until people accept one simple fact. Shit happened, shit will still happen, and no amount of perceived "security" is going to change that simple fact. There is only so much you can do to prevent a determined enemy. We need to learn to live with the fact that we are not living in a safe world and get back to a point where we can live our lives without being scared of everything. Until that day, the terrorists are winning because we live in fear.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by MrMickS (568778)
        Over here in the UK we endured years of IRA terrorism, often supported by the good denziens of Boston. During that time we had fairly regular bombing atrocities. We suffered the removal of wastebaskets from public areas, because they might be a good place to place a bomb (the wastebaskets didn't return following the IRA ceasefire, more on that later). That was all though. There was little panic. These incidents were widely, and accurately perceived, as few and far between. There was more chance of being kil
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by westlake (615356)
      As they say, "no press is bad press.."

      The notion that all publicity is good publicity is adolescent nonsense.

      Tell that to Take Two and Rockstar. Tell it to the Fox executives who bought into the O.J. Simpson deal. Tell that to the Nintendo exec the next time someone dies in a video game stunt.

      And even more bad that the two poor schmucks working for the ad agency are still charged with crimes. They should be set free, and whatever moron phoned in a litebrite as a "bomb" (and the corresponding police mor

  • "Goodwill funds?" (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mex (191941) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:14AM (#17901530)
    I assume that's legalese for a bribe?
  • well... (Score:2, Insightful)

    The NYTimes reports that the Turner Broadcasting System and the ad agency responsible have reached a $2M settlement with the city of Boston and state and federal agencies that treated the light boards placed around the city as an act of terrorism (as covered earlier on /.)

    It may have cost them $2 million, but the amount of coverage (read: free advertising) they got for the upcoming ATHF movie is almost immeasurable.
    • by meme lies (1050572) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:37AM (#17901666)
      It may have cost them $2 million, but the amount of coverage (read: free advertising) they got for the upcoming ATHF movie is almost immeasurable.

      Seems to me they'll need an immeasurable amount of publicity for the movie, since it doesn't seem like one single person in Boston was able to recognize an ATHF character.
  • by batray (257663) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:14AM (#17901536)
    The ones who ordered and paid for the stunt face no charges, but the two guys who put them up as their job do.
    • by walnutmon (988223) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @06:45AM (#17902360)
      I am certain they will be aquited, it is the most frivilous case I have heard of in quite some time... This isn't even someone shouting fire in a movie theater. It is one of those rare occasions that no analogy could be more obviously silly than what actually happend. They planted light brights around the town and are being charged as if they were making bomb threats...

      The interview with them was priceless, all the reporters got them and were dying for some great sound bytes for their story. All they got was the two goofballs talking about hair styles throughout history. Truly classic stuff.
  • by lemmen (48986) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:18AM (#17901566) Homepage
    What were the ad guys thinking when they made this ad? In a country/world full of fears you just don't place boxes with lights in a city. That is asking for troubles...
    • How exactly would a placard with some lights on it even act as a bomb? I doubt terrorists would be so brazen in their advertising, not to mention why would they advertise a little alien guy? Unless they were the Raelians, but I don't think they are even smart enough to make a bomb.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:56AM (#17901760)
        This incident just points up how vigilant we must be now that Everything Has Changed.

        Now rationally no one would put a bomb, even a bomb the size of a D cell, on something with bright flashing lights in the shape of late-night cartoon characters because it would be totally obvious to even a mindless self-serving attention-hungry bureaucrat who can't take a joke and is afraid he/she (he) might end up looking like even more of a total chump if he admitted he/she (he) was taken for a chump...gasp...that making a bomb look this way would only attract undue attention; bored boarding school youths would steal them; bums would urinate on them; etc...

        BUT say the terrorists: "since this is the last way anyone would ever expect us to plant a bomb, that makes it the perfect way to crush the unsuspecting infidel's vital infrastructure! Especially since our fiendish masterminds have just invented the most terrible explosive ever known to human kind, called ultramegatronium, that can level an entire bridge or airport with a single charge exactly the size and shape of D cell. Naturally we'd have to use ultramegatronium since a D cell full of any other explosive would be utterly pointless to use to try to use against a bridge or other permanent structure."

        Now in the olden days they would have tried to conceal the bomb in a piece of trash, or encased in a bridge/building colored box, or hidden in a bag of groceries, or carried in a backpack, or driven in a car, or sewed up in the belly of an unusually large possum, or disguised to look like a rock, or a placed inside a bland piece of steel tubing, or wrapped up in a garbage bag, or carried by a bum they paid $5 for the job (with a $2 bonus for not urinating on it), or painted to look like a brick, or....you know, like that. BUT BUT BUT, these days we expect that all our bridges and buildings are going to get blown up in that manner, so random rocks and pieces of trash are immediately and necessarily suspect, and always disposed of in short order by the bomb squad. So you can't hide a bomb anymore. Instead, the bomb has to have bright flashing lights so people will ignore it.

        Ha, but now we're on to 'em! So that scheme won't work anymore. Of course, they know that we're on to them so they have to go back to camouflage, except we know that they know that we know, so they're going to use bright flashing lights after all, except they also know that we know that they know that we know...

        Anyway, the point is everything is probably a bomb made from ultramegatronium and you can never be too scared, and this proves the officials in charge of the hysteria aren't complete doofuses after all.
        • I've got it! Bostonians could blow up their own infrastucture, but please stand at a safe distance and use protective eyewear.
        • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @08:14AM (#17902794)
          Now in the olden days they would have tried to conceal the bomb in a piece of trash, or encased in a bridge/building colored box, or hidden in a bag of groceries, or carried in a backpack, or driven in a car, or sewed up in the belly of an unusually large possum, or disguised to look like a rock, or a placed inside a bland piece of steel tubing, or wrapped up in a garbage bag, or carried by a bum they paid $5 for the job (with a $2 bonus for not urinating on it), or painted to look like a brick, or....you know, like that. BUT BUT BUT, these days we expect that all our bridges and buildings are going to get blown up in that manner, so random rocks and pieces of trash are immediately and necessarily suspect, and always disposed of in short order by the bomb squad. So you can't hide a bomb anymore. Instead, the bomb has to have bright flashing lights so people will ignore it.

          If you call up the police and report that you think there's a bomb (as someone did) then they will bring in the bomb squad and they will treat it very seriously. Even if the object in question looks like (and is) a lite brite. This has been true at least the 1990s, and has probably been true as long as 'bomb squads' have existed.

          The astonishing thing about this case is not that the authorities treated a lighted sign like it was a bomb. That's exactly what their job is. If you report something is a bomb, they treat it that way, whether it looks like a car, a cardboard box, a stuffed animal... or a cute LED sign giving you the finger.

          No, the astonishing thing is that, even after the cops blew the thing apart with water (revealing a total lack of explosive components), they continued to tell the media that it was a suspicious device and that there were more suspicious devices located in key areas of the city. That's where someone really screwed up big time.
    • by Nuffsaid (855987)
      Assuming they didn't do it on purpose, you must admit that it's not easy to imagine where to trace the line between "innocuous prank" and "terror act" in our times. You always end up underestimating stupidity. Don't know if the same stunt would have caused the same level of alarm in an European city. I suspect not, but you can guess we (our governments and mass media) are doing our best to reach the USA in this game of "scare the masses".
    • by Doppler00 (534739)
      Only as long as you can get all those phony real-estate agents and politicians to stop littering the sidewalks and public places with their signs. If you look at some of the steel tubing they use to hold those signs up, you could say those are suspicious as well. It's terrorism I tell you!
    • by StarWreck (695075)
      The ads were also in Atlanta. Some were up for a week, clearly visible and nearby major office buildings. Nobody thought they were bombs. Most were stolen as souvenirs. Some remained up until a couple of days AFTER the Boston freak-out.
    • Bruce Schneier [schneier.com] posted about this [schneier.com] a couple of days ago. You should read it for an excellent (and depressing) collection of stupid quotes from the authorities.

      Governor Deval Patrick told the Associated Press: "It's a hoax -- and it's not funny."
      It was not a hoax (they weren't trying to make them look like bombs), and it is funny. It's interesting how these signs were around in 10 cities for two weeks (including Boston) in very public places, and only in Boston and only now did someone decide to freak out and bring traffic to a halt. Someone joked:

      "It's almost too easy to be a terrorist these days," said Jennifer Mason, 26. "You stick a box on a corner and you can shut down a city."
      I also like this parody picture [flickr.com].
      • by hey! (33014) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @09:42AM (#17903476) Homepage Journal
        I agree it wasn't a hoax. And it's funny on many levels, just not the intended one. The original "guerilla marketing" campaign was just stupid. Turner lucked out on the publicity they got -- well worth two million.

        The authorities mishandled the response. Not by treating it a potential bomb scare after the "suspicious devices" had been reported; that was appropriate. But by making the all to human mistake of attributing malice to the perpetrator. Naturally, they were miffed at all the disruption, but, as we're seeing right here on /. they are undermining their own credibility.
        If I were governor, my response would have been this:

        "These devices are not bombs, they are advertising gimmicks. There is no danger. But the individuals who reported them as a suspicious device did the right thing, as the police who responded did. I'd like to stress two important things. First, anybody in the future who sees a suspicious device should treat it as dangerous and report it to the police. They should NOT assume it is safe because the devices in this case were safe. It is important to remain vigilant, even though it is inevitable most terrorist scares will be false alarms. Second: nobody should place devices such as this in public places where they can cause a nuisance like this. Unfortunately, we cannot train every citizen in recognizing bombs or in terrorist tactics. So if you are use your common sense.

        We have no reason to believe that the people who placed these devices had any malice. It's an understandable mistake. Although the costs of the response were considerable, some false alarms in the fight against terrorism are unavoidable. We will discuss this matter with the people who did this, and naturally we will welcome any help they are willing to offer with defraying the costs, but we should not lose sight of an important lesson this situation can teach us. We should neither panic, nor relax our guard in the struggle against terror. If we learn that, then this may have been the best money we've spent yet on terrorism prevention.

        Municipalities should develop ordinances and permitting programs for such advertising programs. Advertisers should use their common sense. In the future there will be no leniency for anybody who tries a stunt like this, in full knowledge of the response it will create."

        That's it. It think everybody in this situation was behaving reasonably, based on the information they had at their disposal, up to the point where the authorities decided to call it a "hoax". This is a lesson I'm always drilling my children in: don't jump to conclusions about the motivations of others. Don't say somebody is picking a fight when they bump into you. Don't say somebody is stealing when they pick something up that belongs to you. Don't think somebody is trying to hurt your feelings when they happen to say something that bothers you. It feels right and good at the time, but in the end you create a bigger problem for yourself than the one you imagined.
    • by baptiste (256004) <mike@@@baptiste...us> on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @08:39AM (#17902934) Homepage Journal
      I guess they were thinking Americans still had some brain cells left. The reaction of Boston was absolutely amazing. These things had been up in cities across the country, for over a week in some cases. None of the other cities went into full fear of terror orgasm mode. It was a circuit board with blinking LEDs. You can buy all sorts of electronic kits with blinking LEDs in any shape. Stores have blinking LED signs everywhere. I would hope that ANY bomb tech looking at a flat circuit board with blinking lights and some batteries would think 'theres no explosives' To me they were smart (most like unintentionally) to have it be a painted board like that. It was CLEAR to anyone with half a clue - these weren't bombs. But they had to go and blow them all up just to be safe. If it had been in some kind of case - maybe THEN I could see the concern - but even then. If you are a terrorist, why the hell would you put bright flashing LEDs on your bomb to draw attention to it? The explosion will be attention grabbing enough.

      Seriously. If I'm walking down the street and drop a PCI card in Boston, will I be arrested for inciting fear of terrorism?

      The government of Boston and Mass should be absolutely embarrassed. They looked like absolute fools. I hate these guys are still in jail - but they'll be out soon enough and you can tell they have the right attitude - their press conference was priceless.

      Remember that stupid color warning from DHS? The one that would bounce from yellow to orange every time Bush needed attention for himself? It's still on Orange. It'll be on Orange when I'm dead and gone. How pointless. I'm surprised they didn't bump it to Red just to strip us of our rights for a day just for fun because some kids stuck light brites to walls.

      Of course I expect that little flashing circuit boards of LEDs will be showing up for months in all sorts of places. They'll just have to make sure they attach the 'THIS IS NOT A BOMB (tm)' sticker to it if they put any up in Boston.

  • It's kinda sad that they're forcing the company to pay money because they're ridiculously paranoid. It seems like maybe they should be paying Turner $2m for tarnishing their brand with all this bad press...
  • WTF? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by GFree (853379) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:27AM (#17901602)
    What kind of dumbass assume that glowing lights = bomb?

    A real bomb is never designed to make itself presentable/noticable. Only a dickhead terrorist would invite attention to a bomb. Am I the only one who see the logic in this?

    (NB. I hail from Australia and as such am not used to paranoia, yet).
    • by HillBilly (120575)
      As the phrase goes... only in america....

    • Re:WTF? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Ihlosi (895663) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:36AM (#17901660)
      What kind of dumbass assume that glowing lights = bomb?



      Someone who gets all of his knowledge about bombs from Hollywood movies.



      Only a dickhead terrorist would invite attention to a bomb.



      Or Hollywood movie villain terrorists.

    • 24 (Score:5, Insightful)

      by pedestrian crossing (802349) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:46AM (#17901718) Homepage Journal

      What kind of dumbass assume that glowing lights = bomb?

      It's part of what I call the "24" effect (after the Fox Network program 24).

      More and more you see people's attitudes toward terrorism and law enforcement being molded by what they see on 24.

      On 24, bombs all have blinking lights that count down.

      On 24, Jack Bauer -must- torture the terrorist suspect -now- to stop the terrorist attack that is about to happen. No time for legal procedures, they must be stopped now!

      People are starting to really believe that shit...

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        The way public agencies are portrayed on TV is really sad.

        Similarly, shows like CSI make people believe that all murder crimes are solved and the murderer brought to justice. Every investigator is a hero in shining armor. Thank God we have lots of police, state police, fed police... Otherwise who'd solve every single murder? Yeah, right.

        Funny how no show ever shows us how our money is wasted. Real life in an agency would probably be just too boring to air on TV. Who's interested in losers ending up wo
        • Re:24 (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Chmcginn (201645) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @05:50AM (#17902048) Journal

          Funny how no show ever shows us how our money is wasted. Real life in an agency would probably be just too boring to air on TV. Who's interested in losers ending up working for government, or in endless bureaucracy wars and moronic projects wasting lots of money?

          Having spent a bit of time working for Uncle Sam, I can actually see how there would be a certain limited market for a realistic docu-drama. Mostly for people who enjoy watching things that piss them off. The problem is, it's all well-intentioned. The procurement process is the way it is (for most purchases & contracts )because they want to avoid the appearance of corruption. The human resources policies are the way they are because they want to avoid the appearance of institutional racism, sexism, etc. The health insurance... well, every health insurance policy in the US is fucked up, so you can't be surprised that the federal government (and even the military) has a pretty screwed-up system.

          I am a bit put off by one thing, though - the perception that people who work for the government, at most levels, are too incompotent to work in the 'real world'. I took the job that I did because around 9/11, I felt the need to 'do for my country', blah blah blah. And I think there's a lot of people (from civil service, federal law enforcement, the military, and so on) who feel/felt the same. Course, a few years of the actuality, and working with people who really do think that a lite-bright looks like a bomb... well, either you start turning into one of them, or you get disgusted and look for other employment.

      • Re:24 (Score:5, Insightful)

        by 1u3hr (530656) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @05:45AM (#17902014)
        On 24, Jack Bauer -must- torture the terrorist suspect -now- to stop the terrorist attack that is about to happen. No time for legal procedures, they must be stopped now!

        No one can resist torture; except Jack. I found it pretty hilarious that in the hiatus, Jack was being held in a Chinese prison and tortured every day for a year... yet never broke or spoke a word. Yet time after time he breaks suspects in minutes with one or two applications of electric shock, a bullet in the thigh...

      • Re:24 (Score:4, Funny)

        by Frogbert (589961) <[frogbert] [at] [gmail.com]> on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @07:46AM (#17902664)

        It's part of what I call the "24" effect (after the Fox Network program 24).
        He said he was from Australia, not under a rock in a dark cave on mars!
    • by rvw (755107)

      What kind of dumbass assume that glowing lights = bomb?
      In general, they are called "Americans".
    • Re:WTF? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by mpe (36238) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @05:02AM (#17901788)
      A real bomb is never designed to make itself presentable/noticable. Only a dickhead terrorist would invite attention to a bomb.

      Not quite the same thing. But a tactic used by the IRA was to put a big bomb and a little one near to each other. The little bomb being the one which went off first to "attract attention".
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by megrims (839585)

      (NB. I hail from Australia and as such am not used to paranoia, yet).
      Be alert, but not alarmed.
  • Sounds like pretty good value for money. It isn't often you can get a level of coverage comparable to the superbowl [typepad.com], for only $2 million.
  • by Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:33AM (#17901636)
    Lets start with the mayor, Mayor Menino. He's a fucking retard. A blowhole of political mumbo jumbo. Listen to some of his speeches.

    Mayor Menino cant take a joke. This is well established, just ask Opie and Anthony on XM sat radio and cbs radio... Who both lost their jobs as a result of saying that the mayor had died on the air during an April fools show. He wanted them fired, arrested, and their stations broadcasting license revoked.

    He's doing the same again. As we all know, he has gone as far as to call the Ignignot and Err "Light Bright" displays as "Hoax bombs". A hoax bomb is not a random item left on various buildings. People often leave things around such as backpacks by accident. Are these hoax bombs?

    A hoax bomb is something that looks like a bomb. Perhaps toilet paper rolls painted red with a calculator crudely wired to them. That is a hoax bomb.

    These were fucking "Light Brights" with artwork on them. No anonymous phone calls to the police saying "look out, we're the mooninites and we're gonna blow the fuck out of your city... we're everywhere!" That would be a hoax bomb situation.

    These are billboards.... posters... fucking light brights.

    2million isnt a bad deal, considering the histerical free press they received. 70's hair cuts... are so fucking bad ass.

    I'm glad they did this. It makes the Mayor of Boston look like a fucking moron. It makes the press look like fucking morons. It makes Adult Swim look funny and politically wise. This country needs a little fucking with. Adult Swim is evidence of it, that many people not only want to create counter culture experiences, but also seek them out because of the current ass twisted state of our society. We need a good fucking with, for our own good.

    They weren't hoax bombs... they were silly light brights... and i want one :)

    Watch Aqua Teen Hunger Force on Adult Swim. It's funny and full of random nonsense. These guys are my heros. Not only was it a great idea, but when it became a big stinking "hoax bomb" situation in dumb fuck Boston... It became a good opportunity to make fun of the press and that stupid fucking Mayor Menino.

    Bravo... "and i'm doing this as hard as i can"
  • Im still just... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by n33kos (1060492) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @04:41AM (#17901696)
    Surprised honestly..

    I saw one of these "devices" (or one almost exactly like it) almost a year ago to the day on vacation in Seattle. Ya know what I did? I smiled. I smiled because it was a clever way to advertise (and because I knew what it was from). Nevertheless, when I looked at it I still would have realized it wasn't a bomb. It was flipping me off, not ticking.

    If we painted all stupid people orange. Then we would know to just stay away from those ones.
    • If we painted all stupid people orange. Then we would know to just stay away from those ones.

      Well, it would solve the racism issue. Pretty much 99.99% of humanity would be orange.

      • by mgblst (80109) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @07:24AM (#17902570) Homepage
        I think this is incorrect. I think there are a lot of really smart people, but the ones in power seem to be pretty dumb. This is because smart people don't lust for power, they want for more than that. Dumb people need power to make themselves feel superior. So it is easy to judge the majority as stupid, because most people we see are.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Joebert (946227)

      If we painted all stupid people orange. Then we would know to just stay away from those ones.

      Or be tempted to swerve & hit them with our cars.
  • The other $1M goes to 'goodwill funds' that will be used for response training

    ...such as in how to not overreact?

  • That USD$2mil might seem small compared to the penalty for the Sacramento, CA radio station that held a water drinking competition which ended up with one contestant dead.

    The prize was a new Nintendo Wii - the DJ's laughed and prodded the contestants to hold their water, ignoring how it is possible to die from water toxicity. The woman was a mother, trying to win a Wii for her kids....she begged off from the contest, finally unable to down any additional water, went home and died on the bathroom floor.
  • in order.

    Attorneys representing stockholders should be demanding an explanation of just how this $2M expenditure benefits Turner, given that Turner should not be legally liable for Boston voters having voted retarded idiots into political office.

    Remember that these devices were placed in 10 other cities and Boston is the only one that shut their city down over it. Turner's guerilla advertisers could not be reasonably expected to anticipate that what grabbed a few eyeballs in sane parts of the US would cause
  • Cartoon Network also placed a simmilar number of the Light-Brite ads in Atlanta, Georgia at the same time. Nobody thought they were bombs. Although, they quickly disappeared because people were stealing them as Souvenirs.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Mooninites-LED-Boston-scare-M o oninite-ATHF_W0QQitemZ190080140479QQihZ009QQcatego ryZ363QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem [ebay.com]

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Mooninite-ATHF-Authentic-LED-S ign-Boston-Scare_W0QQitemZ170078564734QQihZ007QQca tegoryZ60285QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1Q [ebay.com]
  • emboldending (Score:4, Insightful)

    by PrinceAshitaka (562972) * on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @06:08AM (#17902122) Homepage
    The problem is that now those that over reacted now feel justified in thier actions. The admission of guilt means that they were right to shut down the city and next time they will do even more. Now, no matter how many people tell them they overreacted thier minds can justify thier actions. The last thing this country needs is more emboldened idiots.
  • Poison Gas (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    SO, if I fart in a crowded courthouse (or any public place) and the majority of the crowd is convinced that they smell tear gas and create panic, will I be fined and arrested? If so... that really sucks.
  • by ayjay29 (144994) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @07:18AM (#17902534)
    ACHTUNG!

    ALLES TURISTEN UND NONTEKNISCHEN LOOKENPEEPERS!

    DAS BOMB IST NICHT FÜR DER GEFINGERPOKEN UND MITTENGRABEN! ODERWISE IST EASY TO SCHNAPPEN DER SPRINGENWERK, BLOWENUPEN UND POPPENCORKEN MIT SPITZENSPARKSEN.

    IST NICHT FÜR TAMPERUN BEI DUMMKOPFEN. DER RUBBERNECKEN SIGHTSEEREN KEEPEN DAS COTTONPICKEN HÄNDER IN DAS POCKETS MUSS.

    ZO TELEFONZED 911 UND REPORTZEN DER BLINKENLICHTEN TILL HOMELANDZEN ZEKURITIZEN.

  • by NFN_NLN (633283) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @07:55AM (#17902708)
    Put up flashing lights == Charges

    Plant a fake bomb (made to look like a bomb) == No Charges

    "In the hospital incident, investigators believe a former hospital employee planted the phony bomb in an office at 185 Harrison Ave. He has been identified but has not been charged, the sources said."

    http://news.bostonherald.com/localRegional/view.bg ?articleid=180349 [bostonherald.com]
    Same city, same cops, same time period... what gives???
  • by gsn (989808) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @09:29AM (#17903338)
    WTF? IMHO we had some clueless people and public officials who overreacted. Most of Boston did not think this was a bomb. What did we learn from this
    a) Thomas Menino is a moron
    b) Ed Markey is a moron
    c) Martha Coakley is a moron
    d) Michael Flaherty is a moron
    e) All of the above

    "It's outrageous, reckless and totally irresponsible," Flaherty said. "What a waste of resources."
    Yes it was waste of resources but what was outrageous and reckless wasn't the ad company it was the overreaction. We understand that morons run the city and their overreaction led to the shutdown of the city. They did not act reasonably post Sep 11 or anything - if they looked at the device up close it ought to have been obvious that it was not a bomb. They knocked the first device of the Sullivan Sq MBTA with a fucking water cannon. They KNEW it wasn't a bomb by this point (that or this is standard explosive ordinance disposal procedure in which case I'm moving from Cambridge tomorrow). They might have communicated this and ended the chaos early. No they later blew up one of the devices to make sure it wasn't a bomb.

    What else did we learn? When is a bomb not a bomb? When the IED has LEDs on it. Now if I'm a terrorist, the best way to bomb any city in the U.S. would be to stick one of the ATHF banners in front of my actual bomb.

    This 2 million isn't a fine - its a little bit of money so that Turner can accept responsibility and these public officials can save face instead of being decried for being thundering morons.
  • by finkployd (12902) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @10:02AM (#17903688) Homepage
    Because right now, you are the laughingstock of the US. Backwater hick towns in the south are laughing at what gullible rubes are you all are (I know, not everyone is, but you had widespread public panic when none of the other cities had a single incident over these signs). Not only were your people fooled and panicked by a light brite (which had been there for two weeks before anyone thought to call the bomb squad), but the police, city officials, up to the Mayor and prosecutors have all demonstrated a frightening lack of intelligence, reasoning, and common sense.

    I know, in a post 9/11 world we cannot afford to depend on common sense and should rely on crippling fear and paranoia to get us through the day, but really. Even after learning their embarrassing mistake, the officials STILL continue to treat this like an episode of 24 and act like a terror threat had taken place. Heck, your news papers are playing along [boston.com] with the mass idiocy.

    You would think after all the facts came out, the city would want this quietly brushed aside but it seems to be reveling in its paranoia and ignorance.

    Finkployd
  • by Digitus1337 (671442) <lk_digitusNO@SPAMhotmail.com> on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @10:45AM (#17904150) Homepage
    This story recieved quite a bit of air time, compare that to the how much time they could have gotten if they'd advertised for the show during say... the superbowl.
  • by ganiman (162726) on Tuesday February 06, 2007 @11:55AM (#17905178)
    To the writers of ATHF:

    Please make an episode where the moonenites plant light-brites on Carl's house and convince him they are bombs.

    The moonenites are pretty good and pulling stuff like this. They convinved Shake and Meatwad that some old tires was marijuana, they can convince Carl that some light-brites are bombs. Would be hilarious if they spoofed on this.

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