Tiger Electronics, a division of Hasbro, planned a marketing campaign for its new electronic plush toy that was geared toward making "Furby" the must-have toy of the 1998 Christmas season. Begun with a splash on NBC's "Today Show" in September, Furby continued making selected appearances on various television news and entertainment programs for six weeks before the toy was available in retail stores. The effect was more than Hasbro hoped for: a Furby frenzy of vicious proportions. Furby, a battery-operated, fuzzy, interactive toy, has its own language, Furbish, but can learn up to 800 English phrases. The plush toy wiggles its oversized ears, blinks its eyes, and moves its lips. Some owners complain that their Furbies talk too much and burp at will--much like annoying kids. Perhaps a measure of Furby's interactive success is that the National Security Agency in Washington, D.C., banned Furbies from its offices fearing that, in mimicking the words it hears, the toy will divulge state secrets.