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Volume 24 No. 154

Sports Media

     The FCC ordered the SportsChannel unit of NY's Cablevision
Systems Corp. to offer its programming to CellularVision of New
York -- a company that competes with the cable operator in parts
of New York.  The FCC called on Cablevision to sell SportsChannel
programming to the wireless company on "non-discriminatory terms"
within 45 days (CellularVision)....Comcast Cable will make Home
Team Sports' signal available to its 285,000 subscribers in
Harford, Howard and Baltimore counties in MD for next Tuesday and
Wednesday -- the nights Cal Ripken is expected to tie and break
Lou Gehrig's consecutive game streak (Milton Kent, Baltimore SUN,
8/30)....The AHL Springfield Falcons have announced an agreement
with Continental Cablevision to televise six games live this
upcoming season.  Continental will carry a game a month, with the
possibility that additional games will be scheduled throughout
the season (Falcons)....SportsChannel Ohio has reached an
agreement with Creative Sports Marketing to televise Big Ten and
Ohio State football and basketball games during the upcoming '95-
96 season.  The deal calls for 10 Big Ten football games
beginning September 16, and up to 22 Big Ten 20 Ohio State hoops
games.  The games will only be seen in the Akron, Cleveland and
Cincinnati markets (SC/Ohio).

     IBM has launched the 1995 U.S. Open home page on the World
Wide Web, with a schedule, statistics, and players bios all
available.  Address:  http://usopen.org (IBM).... The L.A. TIMES
reports that Microsoft's phone support services are overloaded
with calls and complaints about Windows 95 and that customers are
also "having trouble" getting on to the new Microsoft Network
(L.A. TIMES, 8/30). ....Phil Mushnick takes issue with NBC Sports
President Dick Ebersol's contention that The Baseball Network
would have worked if not for the strike.  Mushnick notes the
following deficiencies of TBN:  Blackouts of games in two-team
markets on TBN nights; the end of Saturday afternoon games; 8:05
starts; not all playoff games available; inflexibility on
schedules (N.Y. POST, 8/30).  TBN's Ken Schanzer notes that
playoff games will not be available on DirecTV, since broadcast
ratings "have to be protected" (USA TODAY, 8/30). ....According
to SEC filings, TCI must OK all major decisions regarding Barry
Diller's new TV station group, Silver Co.  Code names in the
brief have TCI's Liberty Media as "the Rockies," the new
partnership as "the Dodgers," and Diller as "Lasorda" (USA TODAY,
8/30).... EchoStar and AlphaStar will both launch direct
satellite services between December and February.  EchoStar hopes
to offer programming for less than $20 a month and a DBS system
for about $500 (BROADCASTING & CABLE, 8/28 issue)....A BOSTON
GLOBE profile of Time Inc. Editor-In-Chief Norman Pearlstine
notes the Managing Editor "bakeoff" he is conducting at Sports
Illustrated to replace the retiring Mark Mulvoy.  While Life
Managing Editor Daniel Okrent and SI Asst Managing Editor Bill
Colson are each getting their three-month runs at running the
magazine, Pearlstine did not rule out adding a third contestant
(BOSTON GLOBE, 8/29)....Fox's NFL coverage will feature 3-D
simulations -- called "Gameations" -- of football plays, with the
O.J. Simpson trial cited as the inspiration (Michael Hiestand,
USA TODAY, 8/30)....Cubs radio and TV play-by-play man Thom
Brennaman will leave WGN instead of being named Harry Caray's
eventual successor.  Brennaman reportedly refused to stop working
on Fox NFL broadcasts, as WGN had requested (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES,
8/30).

     "In a stunning climax to a summer of mammoth media deals,
Time Warner Inc. is offering $8.5 billion to acquire Turner
Broadcasting System," according to Mark Landler of the N.Y.
TIMES.  Turner has not yet decided whether to accept the offer,
but execs close to the discussions say that TBS Chair Ted Turner
is "enthusiastic" about the idea.  The combined entity would be
"the world's largest media company" -- surpassing even
Disney/ABC.  If TBS agrees, the Atlanta-based company would
become a wholly owned subsidiary of Time Warner with Ted Turner
becoming Vice Chair of Time Warner.  The key is the response of
TCI Chair John Malone, who is a 24% shareholder in TBS (N.Y.
TIMES/ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 8/30).  According to USA TODAY's
David Lieberman, "TCI is unsure whether to give up its strong
voice in the cable industry's most important programmer in
exchange for a stake in its chief rival" (USA TODAY, 8/30).  The
WALL STREET JOURNAL notes that the deal is "far from assured" --
as Turner has considered selling before and then changed his
mind, and there could be other bids.  News Corp. and GE are
possible Turner suitors.  One source close to Turner:  "Everybody
is paranoid because of Disney and ABC.  Everybody is saying,
'I've got to get enormous, too" (Sharpe & Shapiro, WALL STREET
JOURNAL, 8/30).  The N.Y. POST's John Durie:  "Whether this deal
ever sees the light of day remains to be seen.  There are
enormous regulatory and personality hurdles to cross before such
a deal could close" (N.Y. POST, 8/30).  INSIDE MEDIA:  "As the
story progresses, the key will be what [Time Warner CEO Gerald]
Levin offered Malone, and if Malone approves" (INSIDE MEDIA
ONLINE, 8/30).      WHAT ARE THEY HOLDING:  Turner Broadcasting
includes CNN, WTBS, TNT, the Braves, the Hawks, SportSouth, and
New Line Cinema and Castle Rock Entertainment.  Time Warner
includes Time Inc. -- Time, People, SI, Fortune, as well as
Warner Bros., the WB Network, HBO, and TVKO (THE DAILY).