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More Marketing Mayhem

And while everyone's been talking about Cartoon Network's marketing mayhem in Boston, another marketing crime is being prosecuted. Planting gadgets for marketing purposes can be dangerous. Last year Paramount put digital music players on LA Times news racks last April. They broke into the Mission Impossible theme song whenever the racks were opened. Some jumpy LA Times readers thought the six inch by two and a half inch red plastic box with wires sticking out, was a bomb, and reported them. This led to sheriffs blowing up one Times Rack, and to the evacuation of the Veterans Affairs Medical Center (a fairly large building) in L.A. It sounds like this device was actually designed to look like a Hollywood-style bomb (almost cartoonish) - not necessarily the wisest move. Though you'd think that once the music started playing people would figure it out!

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  • Working from Los Angeles, Boorstin is CNBC's media and entertainment reporter and editor of CNBC.com's Media Money section.