"This is what you get when you allow mass hordes of illegal, law-breaking aliens into our country. Just a matter of time before these rotten illegals do us all in. Way to go, Ted Kennedy, you fat load."
"The first device was found at a subway and bus station underneath Interstate 93, forcing the shutdown of the station and the highway.
Later, police said four calls, all around 1 p.m., reported devices at the Boston University Bridge and the Longfellow Bridge, both of which span the Charles River, at a Boston street corner and at the Tufts-New England Medical Center."
rollbiz: You know that the punishment for this must appear to match the over-reaction. I would not want to be in the shoes of those involved right now.
designbot: Section 102A1/2. (b) For the purposes of this section, the term “hoax device” shall mean any device that would cause a person reasonably to believe that such device is an infernal machine. (...)
Section 102A1/2. (b) For the purposes of this section, the term “hoax device” shall mean any device that would cause a person reasonably to believe that such device is an infernal machine. (...)
It's Raining Florence Henderson: Infernal machine would be a great band name.
ericb: Another question: at what time did Turner and/or Interference, Inc. realize it was their marketing devices which were the center of the brouhaha? And, did they proactively contact law enforcement?
"Aqua Teen Hunger Force" is a cartoon with a cultish following that airs as part of the Adult Swim late-night block of programs for adults on the Cartoon Network. A feature length film based on the show is slated for release March 23.The cartoon also includes two trouble-making, 1980s-graphic-like characters called "mooninites," named Ignignokt and Err — who were pictured on the suspicious devices. They are known for making the obscene hand gesture depicted on the devices.
"The only bomb here is the potential movie."
"An Arlington man was arrested after 38 hoax devices were found throughout greater Boston, Mayor Thomas Menino and Attorney General Martha Coakley announced Wednesday night.
The devices were eventually determined to be part of a marketing campaign that involved a character from the cartoon show 'Aqua Teen Hunger Force.'
Coakley said Peter Berdvosky, 27, of Arlington, was arrested Wednesday night and charged under a new statute that makes it a crime to place, transfer or possess a hoax device that results in panic. He was also charged with one count of disorderly conduct.
....Berdvosky will be arraigned in Charlestown District Court on Thursday. If convicted, Berdvosky faces up to five years in prison."
Rep. Ed Markey, a Boston-area congressman, said, "Whoever thought this up needs to find another job."
"Scaring an entire region, tying up the T and major roadways, and forcing first responders to spend 12 hours chasing down trinkets instead of terrorists is marketing run amok," Markey, a Democrat, said in a written statement. "It would be hard to dream up a more appalling publicity stunt."
“…[Turner Broadcasting will] pay big according to the mayor [Thomas Menino]. The price tag for this size emergency response has already topped $500,000 and tonight the mayor and other officials are calling for a boycott against Turner Broadcasting Entertainment.”
"Here’s a little more about our suspect who was arrested. 27 year-old Peter Berdovsky, a local artist, lives in Arlington, but he was actually born in the Soviet Union in Belarus. He was granted political asylum in the year 2000 and went on to attend the Mass College of Art, gaining a Bachelor of Arts & Sciences degree and graduating with distinction in 2005. Now, according to Berdovsky’s own website, he has created and installed many custom video installations and other art show productions.
"A newspaper promotion for Tom Cruise’s upcoming ‘Mission: Impossible III’ got off to an explosive start when a county arson squad blew up a news rack, thinking it contained a bomb.
The confusion: the Los Angeles Times rack was fitted with a digital musical device designed to play the ‘Mission: Impossible’ theme song when the door was opened. But in some cases, the red plastic boxes with protruding wires were jarred loose and dropped onto the stack of newspapers inside, alarming customers.
Sheriff’s officials said they rendered the news rack in this suburb 35 miles north of downtown Los Angeles ‘safe’ after being called to the scene Friday by a concerned individual who thought he’d seen a bomb.
Times officials said the devices were placed in 4,500 randomly selected news boxes in Los Angeles and Ventura counties in a venture with Paramount Pictures designed to turn the ‘everyday news rack experience’ into an ‘extraordinary mission.’
It was just that, at least for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department arson squad, which destroyed the box.
‘This was the least intended outcome. We weren’t expecting anything like this,’ said John O’Loughlin, the Times’ senior vice president for planning.
The devices are to remain in the boxes until May 7, two days after the film is scheduled to open."
"If it had detonated, it would have caused damage," Gittens said. "It was what we consider an IED," an improvised explosive device.
"Authorities arrested two men who put up the signs. Peter Berdovsky, 27, of Arlington, and Sean Stevens, 28, of Charlestown, were charged Wednesday night with one count of placing a hoax device and one count of disorderly conduct."
"As soon as Turner realized the Boston problem around 5 p.m., it said, law enforcement officials were told of their locations in 10 cities where it said the devices had been placed for two to three weeks: Boston, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Seattle, Portland, Ore., Austin, Texas, San Francisco and Philadelphia."
"Berdovsky, an artist, told The Boston Globe he was hired by Interference and said he was 'kind of freaked out' by the furor.
'I find it kind of ridiculous that they’re making these statements on TV that we must not be safe from terrorism, because they were up there for three weeks and no one noticed. It’s pretty commonsensical to look at them and say this is a piece of art and installation,' he said."*
Chapter 266: Section 102A1/2. Possession, transportation, use or placement of hoax devices
Section 102A1/2. (a) Whoever possesses, transports, uses or places or causes another to knowingly or unknowingly possess, transport, use or place any hoax device or hoax substance with the intent to cause anxiety, unrest, fear or personal discomfort to any person or group of persons shall be punished by imprisonment in a house of correction for not more than two and one-half years or by imprisonment in the state prison for not more than five years or by a fine of not more than $5,000, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
(b) For the purposes of this section, the term “hoax device” shall mean any device that would cause a person reasonably to believe that such device is an infernal machine. For the purposes of this section, the term “infernal machine” shall mean any device for endangering life or doing unusual damage to property, or both, by fire or explosion, whether or not contrived to ignite or explode automatically. For the purposes of this section, the words “hoax substance” shall mean any substance that would cause a person reasonably to believe that such substance is a harmful chemical or biological agent, a poison, a harmful radioactive substance or any other substance for causing serious bodily injury, endangering life or doing unusual damage to property, or both.
For much of the day, police treated the signs, which measure about 1 by 1 1/2 feet and feature protruding wires on one side, as potentially dangerous. But their investigation shifted when they happened to move one of the signs into a darker area. The sudden lack of sunlight prompted the lights forming the character's image to brighten into color. Sometime between 2 and 3 p.m., according to a public safety official, a Boston police analyst recognized the image as a cartoon character, and police concluded it was likely a publicity stunt.
Statement from Mayor Menino
First, I want to congratulate the Boston Police Department and all the public safety agencies for responding in a coordinated effort today. As most of you know, there were reports of nine suspicious packages found throughout the city and area earlier today. At this time there is no reason to be alarmed. The coordinated response by all departments proves the system we have in place works. Today, my Office of Emergency Preparedness and the Boston Police Department shared intelligence with the Boston Regional Intelligence Center, Boston Fire Department, Emergency Medical Services, Massachusetts State Police, ATF and FBI and we will continue to do so whenever necessary.
It is outrageous, in a post 9/11 world, that a company would use this type of marketing scheme. I am prepared to take any and all legal action against Turner Broadcasting and its affiliates for any and all expenses incurred during the response to today’s incidents. Boston will look to coordinate our efforts going forward with Cambridge, Somerville and any other affected agencies.
"One of the two men charged in connection with the advertising campaign that turned into a terror scare was asked to keep quiet as the stunt sent the city of Boston into chaos, according to two fellow artists who provided ABC News with an e-mail from the man supporting their claim.
….friends and fellow artists Toshi Hoo and Travis Vautour said it's not Berdovsky and Stevens who should take the fall for this.
According to Hoo and Vautour, the New York-based guerilla marketing firm, Interference Inc., which was running the advertising campaign in Boston; New York; Los Angeles; Chicago; Atlanta; Seattle; Portland, Ore.; Austin, Texas; San Francisco; and Philadelphia, asked Berdovsky to keep his involvement quiet as the event was playing out.
‘We received an e-mail in the early afternoon from Peter that asked the community that he's a part of to keep any information we had on the down low and that was instructed to him by whoever his boss was in this advertising campaign gone wrong,’ Vautour said. ‘I don't know if it was for security reasons or it was to buy them some time or to buy Peter some time.’
In an e-mail obtained by ABC News sent from Berdovsky to Hoo at 1:26 p.m. Wednesday, the artist writes, ‘My boss at the Cartoon Network's ad agency just called — she is asking that I pretty please keep everything on the dl [down low; quiet].’ The e-mail, supplied by Hoo, contains a large swath of blacked-out text that he claims contained personal information he'd rather not share.
No one at Interference Inc. answered the phone or responded to requests for comment on the authenticity of the e-mail, and the company's Web site appears to be down.
Shirley Powell, a spokesperson for Turner Broadcasting, said she was unaware of the e-mail and that it was ‘nothing I've heard.’ Powell said that at this point the company had no comment on the e-mail or allegations Berdovsky was asked to keep quiet."
“‘Tracy O’Connor, 34, a retail manager, called the police response ‘silly and insane,’ contrasting it with that in other cities where no one reported concerns about the devices — an advertising gimmick for the Cartoon Network show ‘Aqua Teen Hunger Force.’
‘We’re the laughingstock,’ she said.
‘....Just a little over a mile away from the placement of the first device, a group of terrorists boarded airplanes and launched an attack on New York City,’ police Commissioner Edward Davis said in an interview with The Associated Press.
‘The devices didn’t prompt calls of concern in any of the nine other cities where Turner said the devices were placed. Police in the other cities fanned out to find and remove them after Boston’s scare.
....Most of Boston’s colleagues in law enforcement in the other cities chose their words carefully.
‘I wouldn’t want to give my opinion, but in today’s world it’s better safe than sorry. Someone (in Boston) clearly thought there was a threat,’ Atlanta police Officer Joe Cobb said.
In the Seattle area, authorities thought the devices were ‘obviously not suspicious.’
‘In this day and age, whenever anything remotely suspicious shows up, people get concerned — and that’s good,’ King County sheriff’s Sgt. John Urquhart said. ‘However, people don’t need to be concerned about this. These are cartoon characters giving the finger.’”
" Federal prosecutors have said they may sue Paramount Pictures and the Los Angeles Times over a film promotion last year in which digital devices planted in news racks were mistaken for bombs.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Linda A. Kontos accused the companies of acting 'carelessly in executing the promotional campaign by planting a device that could be mistaken for a bomb in a United States government building post-9/11,' the Times reported Thursday.
The threat of prosecution was reported a day after Boston officials found 38 blinking electronic signs promoting the Cartoon Network TV show 'Aqua Teen Hunger Force' across the city. Authorities are investigating whether Cartoon Network parent Turner Broadcasting Systems Inc., a unit of Time Warner Inc., or other companies should be criminally charged.
Last April, Paramount, which is owned by Viacom Inc., placed the devices in 4,500 Times news racks around Los Angeles that played the iconic movie theme music for 'Mission: Impossible III' whenever the door was opened. Some people thought they were bombs and reported them to police."
MEMO: CARTOON NETWORK PRESIDENT RESIGNS OVER BOSTON BOMB SCARE BLUNDER
Fri Feb 9 2007 13:56:11 ET
From: Jim Samples
I am sure you are aware of recent events in which a component of an Adult Swim marketing campaign made Turner Broadcasting the unintended focus of controversy in Boston and around the world. I deeply regret the negative publicity and expense caused to our company as a result of this campaign. As general manager of Cartoon Network, I feel compelled to step down, effective immediately, in recognition of the gravity of the situation that occurred under my watch. It's my hope that my decision allows us to put this chapter behind us and get back to our mission of delivering unrivaled original animated entertainment for consumers of all ages. As for me, there will be new professional challenges ahead that will make the most of the experiences I've had as part of this remarkable company. Through my 13 years at the company I have found myself continuously in awe of the talented artists and business people surrounding me, from those who realize their vision in creating a cartoon to those who so brilliantly deliver the animation to viewers. I will always cherish the experience of having worked with you. I appreciate the support that you have shown me. As a friend and a fan, I also look forward to seeing your best and most personally fulfilling work yet. Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Boomerang and each of you deserve nothing less.
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