Max Headroom incident

The Max Headroom incident
November 22, 1987

From TNS newsletter, December 1987.

"Here's a summary of what happened:

1) On Channel 9 (WGN) in Chicago, the 9 o'clock news was interrupted during the sports section.

2) For about half a minute, a character in a Max Headroom mask came on the screen (with a moving background too).

3) Channel 9 (WGN) cancelled out the signal after about half a minute.

4) About 2 hours later, on Channel 11 (PBS) in Chicago, the Max Headroom TV pirate came on again. This time Max Headroom did a little skit where he would drink a can of Pepsi and throw it away and other antics. Toward the end of the skit, the man with the Max Headroom mask dropped his pants, mooned the screen, and was spanked with a fly swatter. The entire episode took place while the science-fiction series Dr. Who was being broadcasted. The skit lasted for about a minute and a half. The pirate stopped the broadcast on his own (Channel 11 didn't knock it off the air). Since Channel 11 is public, it didn't really have the power to knock the broadcast off.. so Max Headroom might have been on for half an hour if he wanted to be. Some words were heard but most of it was blurred.

This TV pirate used an extremely powerful transmitter (and very expensive
too) to knock out the other signals.

My personal view: funny... we should have more TV pirates.. it didn't really do any real harm (even though the skit had some off-color parts) but was neat to watch.

TV piracy is a serious crime. I'm sure most people remember Captain Midnight. He was eventually caught and Max Headroom might get caught soon too. Any developments will be covered in future issues of TNS."

Source: Tolmes News Service, 15-Part I, December 20, 1987 link) link)

Pirate Television

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