How to Hack a Video Screen

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Filed under: Culture Jamming and Reality Hacking, Fact or Fiction?, How to Pull Off a Prank, Instructionals

Video: How To Hack Video Screens In Times Square
The Gothamist
March 14, 2011

This YouTube video claims to reveal a simple, ingenious method for overriding video screens broadcasting ads in Times Square and elsewhere. Is it real? Well, it certainly looks that way, so if this is fake you’ve got to them credit for verisimilitude. According to the video, all you need to hijack the Times Square ad phantasmagoria is an iPhone, a video transmitter, and a video repeater “which takes any signal coming out of the iPhone and boosts it and enhances it.” This gadget overrides any video screen that it’s being held next to, if the YouTube is to be believed:

So is this for real? One YouTube commenter calls bullshit: “The dongle can’t get enough power through the headphone jack to transmit a video in such good quality 20 meters or more through the air and the massive electro smog on Times Square—just for example. lets don’t talk about the controllers of the screens.” But another expert writes, “I do some motiontracking and I don’t think its fake. The balloon is translucent and interacts with the video source.”

What do you think: viral ad for the newest iPhone, CNN, and NYC tourism; or an exciting new development in the world of culture jamming? Tune in later week, when YouTube user BITcrash44 promises to explain how he made the prototype.