SBD/23/Sports Media

LIBERTY, FOX HOPING FOR SOME SPECIAL fX

     In an interview in the latest BROADCASTING & CABLE,  Liberty
Media President & CEO Peter Barton describes what to expect from
the partnership with Fox on the new fX sports and entertainment
channel.  Barton, whose company is currently working a deal with
Fox to combine all of Liberty's RSNs with fX, believes the two
will work through the "legal administrivia" concerning the
participating channels and close the deal this week.  According
to Barton, Liberty will place the Fox brand on its networks
"probably during the Olympics, so we can work out the bugs when
no one is watching."  Barton said fX will not seek to challenge
ESPN as an all-sports cable presence:  "It will never seek to go
after an all-sports emblem the way ESPN has.  We are buying a lot
of marquee sports for it.  You really wouldn't want to be one of
the cable operators right now that doesn't have a long-term fX
agreement" (BROADCASTING & CABLE, 4/22).
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