Unsolved mystery: Max Headroom, WGN, and the last hacked broadcast | Bleader

Unsolved mystery: Max Headroom, WGN, and the last hacked broadcast

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Did You Know? The last incidence of a broadcast signal being hijacked--a technically difficult and way illegal act--happened in Chicago in 1987. The pirate briefly broke into WGN's signal, and after being booted off interrupted a WTTW broadcast of Dr. Who for the purpose of wearing a Max Headroom mask, being spanked, and saying totally unhinged stuff about WGN. It's so bizarro it's kind of chilling.


Other people have since taken control of television broadcasts, such as the saboteurs who slipped hard-core porn into a Tom Brokaw show, but signal hijacking, overpowering a broadcast with a microwave transmitter, takes a fair amount of technical knowledge. Despite that, however, no one's ever figured out who did it, whether it had anything to do with some sort of beef with WGN, or what the Clutch Cargo reference was all about.

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