• United States



Boston bomb scare a marketing campaign for Cartoon Network

Jan 31, 20072 mins
Data and Information SecurityPhysical Security

Talk about a marketing campaign gone horribly, horribly wrong!

Nine electronic devices placed throughout Boston’s major highways and bridges were only part of a marketing campaign for Cartoon Network’s Aqua Teen Hunger Force cartoon, Time Warner acknowledged in a statement.

The “suspicious” packages backed up traffic across the city as bridges and major thoroughfares were closed and authorities carefully disabled each device. Boston’s Orange and Red “T” lines were also shut down for a time, according to a report by MarketWatch. Other reports indicate the U.S. Coast Guard temporarily blocked off the Charles River.

How much this fiasco will cost taxpayers is anyone’s guess at this point, but I think Time Warner should be held responsible for any associated costs. Don’t you?

On the flip side, my partner in crime, Bob McMillan, reminds me that our law enforcement personnel really should be able to tell the difference between a simple computer and a bomb or other threatening device.

As Bob says, “Personally, I think the best response to terrorism is to be intelligent in our investigations, but not to do these blanket freak-outs. In Europe they’ve had bombs for years and they don’t react with as much panic as we do to a Cartoon Network promotion.”

Another point of concern is that Cartoon Network said the devices, which are reportedly in nine other cities as part of the campaign, have been in place for two to three weeks. No one was suspicious before now? Where’s the “enhanced security” we were told was in place post-9/11?

Tell us what you think.

-Shawna McAlearney