At Press Time

Nov 19, 2001  •  Post A Comment

Whiting named CEO of Nielsen Media Research
New York-Susan Whiting has been named president and ceo of Nielsen Media Research, effective Jan. 1. Ms. Whiting, 45, has been president and chief operating officer since May. She succeeds John Dimling, who is retiring as chairman and CEO. Ms. Whiting has been with Nielsen Media Research since 1978. Mr. Dimling will remain with the company on a part-time basis, serving as non-executive chairman of Nielsen Media Research in the United States and ACNielsen Media International.
WGA-Nickelodeon war further complicated
New York-A new front has opened in the war between the Writers Guild of America and Nickelodeon Animation Studios over whether the WGA will represent writers on popular Nick animated shows. The WGA is now charging that Nickelodeon does not “honor codes of conduct prohibiting child labor in the manufacturing of toys based on Nickelodeon animated characters.”
Specifically, the WGA contends that toys based on characters from “SpongeBob SquarePants” and “Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius,” two of the shows at the center of the continuing unionization dispute, are made in China by a Nick licensee that is not a signatory to the standards of the International Council of Toy Industries Code of Business Practices or the Fair Labor Association’s Workplace Code of Conduct. Those codes prohibit such practices as forced labor and child labor.
The WGA continues to charge that Nickelodeon, a unit of Viacom, will not bargain with the Guild and has taken retaliatory steps against writers who have requested union representation. For its part, Nickelodeon has declared during past flare-ups of the dispute that it
would continue to “recognize and honor” the National Labor Relations Board’s voting rules and procedures for determining whether employees want to unionize. A Nickelodeon statement denied the new charges and called them an “outrageous attack on the integrity of Nickelodeon and its licensee partners.” The six affected Nick shows are “Invader Zim,” “SpongeBob SquarePants,” “Constant Payne,” “Hey Arnold!” “Fairly Odd Parents” and “Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius.”
AOL bids for Broadband
New York-AOL Time Warner is the latest company to formally bid for AT&T Broadband, joining Comcast Corp. and Cox Communications. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, AOL TW has signed a confidentiality agreement with AT&T, which plans to evaluate bids by the end of the month.
House puts $20M aside for rural broadcasting
Washington-The House late last week set aside $20 million for a federal loan guarantee program that will help cable and satellite television companies deliver local broadcast signals to rural areas. The allocation is part of a larger budget bill that is awaiting President Bush’s signature to become law. An industry source said the $20 million will support about $275 million in guaranteed lending to TV providers serving small and rural markets. Congress adopted the $1.25 billion loan guarantee plan last year.