by Mike Masnick
Fri, Sep 21st 2007 5:35pm
Earlier this year, a Cartoon Network marketing promotion became a huge story in the city of Boston when police assumed that some promotional light-up boxes were actually bombs. Rather than admit that they made a mistake and overreacted, the authorities in Boston continued to accuse the folks behind the promotion of perpetrating a "hoax" on the city. Of course, a hoax is where you try and trick people. None of the folks involved in the promotion were trying to trick anyone into believing the promotional devices were bombs. They were simply promotional. However, Boston still seems to be focused on calling any electronics device they don't understand a hoax device. The latest situation involves an MIT student wearing a sweatshirt that included a homemade electrical component that would light up LEDs on the sweatshirt. It's certainly understandable that security would want to check out the device and understand it. It's even somewhat understandable that they would be quite concerned about a homemade electrical device found in a sweatshirt. Walking into an airport with such a device is asking for trouble. However, to then accuse her of possessing a "hoax device," seems a bit absurd. This wasn't a "hoax" device at all. She wasn't trying to trick anyone.
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