Guerrilla Marketing Gone Bad in Boston

Turner Broadcasting apologized "for a marketing campaign that sparked Boston's biggest security scare since the September 11, 2001, attacks -- closing bridges, shutting major roads and putting hundreds of police on alert." The "outdoor marketing campaign" promoting an Adult Swim cartoon "had been in place for two to three weeks in Boston, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Seattle, Portland, Austin, San Francisco, and Philadelphia." Boston police feared that the magnetic lightboards of cartoon characters might be bombs. According to PR Week, Turner Broadcasting has "hired outside PR and legal counsel" to recover from its "marketing stunt gone bad." Turner "declined to name the agency" it hired for PR assistance, and said it had not yet decided whether to continue to work with Interference, the agency that developed the lightboard campaign. Associated Press reports that Turner has "agreed to pay $2 million" to local Boston and Massachusetts state agencies.


Does anyone else think it's completely absurd for Turner to be cooperating so willingly with this circus act? Lite Brites, they were LITE BRITES. Next thing you know Pepsi will be paying cities around the country millions of dollars because an empty soda can left near a train station will cause crippling scares. I don't understand why this has not prompted a very serious debate about whether we've gone too far in our extreme paranoia over terrorism. We aren't stronger and safer now, we're a lot more vulnerable.

I make music at