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Turner To Pay for Costs of Disastrous Marketing Campaign

The office of Boston Mayor Thomas Menino confirms that Turner Broadcasting has agreed to pay for the costs associated with its guerilla marketing campaign gone awry.

A figure of $1 million has been reported, but the Mayor's office could not confirm that at press time, and Turner said it could not confirm the payment either.

A spokesman for the mayor said details of the payment were still being worked out by the Attorney General's office. "Were workng on a resolution. It is a very active and fluid process," said a spokeswoman for Attorney General Martha Coakley.

The company paid an outside marketer to promote its Aqua Teen Hunger Force show on Cartoon Network. Light boards with finger-flicking characters were posted in 10 cities, but those in Boston triggered alarm when they were thought to be bombs.Two of the guerilla marketers face charges, and the Department of Homeland Security has registered its displeasure. Turner, a Time Warner Company, has apologized, saying it recognized the seriousness of the incident.

Massachusetts Senator John Kerry Thursday sent a letter to the chairmen of the Federal Trade Commission and FCC asking them to make sure the city gets reimbursed, though it is unclear what power they would have to do so.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.