Aqua Teen Hunger Force shuts down Boston

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by MacNut, Jan 31, 2007.

  1. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #1
    BOSTON, Massachusetts (CNN) -- Electronic light boards featuring an adult-cartoon character triggered bomb scares around Boston on Wednesday, spurring authorities to close two bridges and a stretch of the Charles River before determining the devices were harmless.

    Turner Broadcasting Co., the parent company of CNN, said the devices contained harmless magnetic lights aimed at promoting the Adult Swim network's late-night cartoon "Aqua Teen Hunger Force." Law enforcement sources said the devices displayed one of the Mooninites, outer-space delinquents who appear frequently on the show, greeting visitors with a raised middle finger.

    "While the concern is lessened as a result of the investigation, I'd like to remind citizens to treat any suspicious devices with care and to call 911 if any such device is found," Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis said.

    The devices had been placed as part of an "outdoor marketing campaign" in 10 cities, a Turner Broadcasting statement said.

    "Parent company Turner Broadcasting is in contact with local and federal law enforcement on the exact locations of the billboards," the statement said. "We regret that they were mistakenly thought to pose any danger."

    Turner said the devices had been in place for two to three weeks in Boston; New York; Los Angeles, California; Chicago, Illinois; Atlanta, Georgia; Seattle, Washington; Portland, Oregon; Austin, Texas; San Francisco, California; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/01/31/boston.bombscare/index.html
     
  2. Oryan macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    Just saw this on the BBC. Who in the world would try to place "packages" around major cities for advertising... unless they wanted this kind of publicity.
     
  3. RedTomato macrumors 68040

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    #3
    Just read the summary and the linked article, and I still don't understand this at all :confused: :confused:

    What's a 'magnetic light board'?

    And from the photo in the article, I see it's some sort of arty/badly drawn character in lights, placed in various places.

    What's so scary about this? Why are americans so fearful of this?
     
  4. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #4
    FEAR is the number one weapon the govt has to use against the people. FEAR WEED,FEAR GAYS,FEAR MUSLIMS,FEAR SADDAM,FEAR,FEAR ,FEAR,. Bush & his legion of republican draft dodgers want us to fear everything so the police state can move forward while empowering the corporations and removing any Liberty or Freedom we have left. Thats why.
     
  5. Oryan macrumors 6502a

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  6. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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    #6
  7. jsw Moderator emeritus

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    #7
    Yeah, this screwed up traffic for hours here. Caused me to miss a meeting I really wanted to attend, too. Bastards. They should at least have told public officials what they were doing, as they should have foreseen the possible consequences.

    Yeah, I'll be watching that show.... :rolleyes:

    Oddly enough, Turner claims they'd been up for some time... which arguably implies that they weren't all that effective if they were just now noticed.
     
  8. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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    #8
    For those that are arguing why everyone is on edge, Usually is you see something suspcious you report it. The fact that nobody knew what that was proves 1, that the publicity worked but not in the way intended if nobody knew what the boxes were, and 2, if a person sees something that looks like a box with electronics there is a good chance they will call the police.
     
  9. RedTomato macrumors 68040

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    #9
    Well, I'm a long way from Boston, but they don't look like 'boxes' or 'packages'.

    I do agree they look like scary terrorist artist renderings of light up little men from mars that glow and flash in the dark. Better lock/blow them all up to be sure.
     
  10. thedude110 macrumors 68020

    thedude110

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    #10
    Deviant art (even if it's only vaguely deviant) is a plaza -- it gathers questions that, in practical settings, "shouldn't be asked." In this case a broad based marketing scheme against apparent (and more subtle) definitions of civility encourages us to challenge (and ideally redefine, though maybe it only succeeds -- and only wants to succeed -- in reinforcing) those apparent definitions. At the same time it grabs us by the scruffs of our necks and screams "Art is subsumed into capital!" so that we can say "Good, it won't explode. But let's try and convict the appearance of art and deviance, just to be safe" (justice subsumed into capital). If only we could buy some mercy.

    Well, that and it was a tiny monster that was flipping us off ...
     
  11. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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    #11
    I think the problem was not that there was one but many all over the city.
     
  12. ErikCLDR macrumors 68000

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    #12
    Yea, how could the bomb squad mistake that as a bomb and detonate it.

    FOX news was making it sound like a bomb made out of household products. I guess thats what you get when you watch FOX.
     
  13. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

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    #13
    Yeah, now that I look at the better pics (the ones I saw originally were very low-res), my anger has shifted from Turner to Boston officials. I mean, seriously: those looked dangerous? Good grief. :rolleyes:
     
  14. andiwm2003 macrumors 601

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    #14
    well, it's to late now to steal one of those. after that publicity they will sell for lot's of $$$ on ebay.

    actually i wonder why they weren't stolen in the 2 weeks they were supposedly up?

    by the way they don't look scary. there is no excuse to block traffic for hours because of that.
     
  15. smueboy macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    What a joke.

    Well, they do look very much like al qaeda.. :rolleyes:
     
  16. wmmk macrumors 68020

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    #16
    hah. "The only thing to fear is fear itself." The Bush regime sure remembers that, but, um, maybe they're misinterpreting it?;)

    By the way, who is that in your 'tar, MacNut?
     
  17. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

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    #17
    Maria Sharapova:cool:
     
  18. wmmk macrumors 68020

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    I see. I need to watch more tennis!:cool:
     
  19. Abstract macrumors Penryn

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    #19
    Blah blah blah.....more anti-government stuff spewed every time the government does anything. I don't like Bush or anything about the US government, but give us a break.


    I don't think it's silly to be safe and report it, nor is it silly to take the threat silly. Sure, now that we have clear, up-close photos of this thing from every angle, and under room lighting, it's obviously not dangerous, and it's obvious that it's not a bomb.

    However, from far away, if you just glance at it, or if it's dark, it could be a bomb set up by some psycho who wants to give society the finger. If nobody responded to these call-in complaints/sightings of this thing, and it actually was a bomb, people would be complaining about negligence or something.

    If anything, Turner should pay for the entire cost of "diffusing" these things, the entire investigation, and then a fat fine. Bad advertising isn't against the law, but at least fine the company for doing something stupid and wasting time and resources.
     
  20. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

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    I blame the media for (as usual) making it seem like more of a big deal than it is.

    A dumb-ish idea on Turner's part, and I don't blame law enforcement for doing their job (or people for reporting it). Turner got their publicity though.


    I think it's a fairly lame show anyhow. <shrug>
     
  21. hulugu macrumors 68000

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    #21
    We are becoming a nation of fearful people — in the dark, a circuit board attached to a bridge should be reported, and the police should quietly examine the device, assess the situation, and respond accordingly. Going apesh** and closing down parts of the city is not how you react to a security situation. You proceed logically with specific actions and procedures. The bomb squad should have been able to assess what they were looking at, if they can't see well enough to understand what the device is, they probably shouldn't be blowing it up.

    The company should have done due diligence to keep something like this from happening, however the real culprit is an atmosphere of fear and officials who appear unable to assess threats in any rational terms.
     
  22. Abstract macrumors Penryn

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    Well I think clearing out nearby buildings (if there were any), and making sure no cars went near that area are probably good ideas, actually. Same thing when someone calls into a building and reports that there's a bomb in the building, or when fire alarms go off in a building when someone can't see or smell any smoke, etc. I'd rather clear the building or road just in case. I don't think it was necessary to clear people and cars out of areas beyond 100 metres from this "bomb", which is where I think the overreaction occurred.

    While I don't understand much about bombs or how bomb squads handle these things, but if I was a part of the bomb squad, and I couldn't tell whether it was a bomb or not, I would probably be hesitant to go and grab the thing, put it into the truck, and drive back to the station with it. ;)
     
  23. SactoGuy18 macrumors 68020

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    #23
    I'm not surprised that the law enforcement authorities in Boston were extra-cautious.

    Does any remember the psychology behind a booby-trap bomb? During the 1980's, the Soviet military would drop booby-trapped dolls and other toys near villages in Afghanistan; many Afghani children were seriously hurt or killed from these "toys." The devices we saw today could have easily hidden several ounces of PETN plastique explosive, and when that goes off it could kill or seriously hurt someone or cause a surprising amount of damage.
     
  24. hulugu macrumors 68000

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    #24
    Clearing the area while waiting for the bomb squad to assess the device is a good idea, it was the subsequent actions that are hard to understand. Blowing up the device is a common tactic for disabling a bomb, but it carries some risks as well that bomb squads typically assess the device first — since if you blow up a nerve gas canister, for example, you might make things worse.

    As for booby-traps, again, the BPD should assess the device first with a careful examiniation, either using a robot or a brave officer, before just blowing it up. The entire reaction was the problem, not just the initial actions, and the fury of the Boston officials was unnecessary. We live in a civil society and putting up a LED board shouldn't become a crime.
     
  25. solvs macrumors 603

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    #25
    Cartoon Network has been running an apology in between Adult Swim shows for the last couple of hours. They're clearly not happy with the company they hired to do the marketing and are completely cooperating with the police. Maybe it was overkill, I think it was, but this was a stupid thing to do given the current situation. I'm not going to boycott them since I still like ATHF and CN (especially AS), but nor will I be too upset with the police. At least they didn't trample anyone's civil rights, just being way too overly cautious in the name of public safety. Or the perception thereof.

    Unfortunately I've heard the movie sucks, even if you're a fan of the show, and I'm guessing this type of thing won't help, though bad publicity is still publicity.
     

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