In 1929, probably just weeks before the great stock market crash, people were entertained by the sight of thousands of burning radio sets.
Some suggested that the apparent zeal with which these poor radios were burned had to do with the fact that they were obsolete regenerative receivers, notorious sources of radio frequency interference.
But no, the pictures make it clear that many of these old radios were simple tuned radio frequency (TRF) sets, not regenerative units. Besides, it was not until the early 1930s that superheterodyne receivers began to dominate the market.
No, this was just good old capitalism. People were encouraged to trade in old, “obsolete” radios and purchase new ones. And the wanton destruction of the old sets became a public spectacle.
One can only wonder about the amount of toxic smoke that was produced by this stunt. Not that anyone cared back in 1929.