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Jun 13, 2003  •  Post A Comment

McCain Introduces New FCC Legislation

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., today introduced legislation that would bar industry from picking up the travel expenses of Federal Communications Commission officials. Sen. McCain said agency officials have taken more than 2,500 industry-sponsored trips in the past eight years.

The trips, though legal, could raise the appearance of impropriety, the senator said. The legislation also extends from two to five years the statutory requirement that the agency review the need for its media ownership rules. In addition, the legislation makes clear that the FCC is free to beef up its media ownership rules if its review suggests that’s warranted.

Gemstar-TV Guide and Thomson Settle Patent Dispute: Gemstar-TV Guide and Thomson, the manufacturer of RCA-brand television sets, have settled their patent dispute and announced a multiyear licensing agreement to incorporate Gemstar’s interactive program guide technology into Thomson’s RCA-brand television sets, digital recording devices and satellite receivers.

Since 1997 Thomson and Gemstar have collaborated on the development and deployment of IPGs and Thomson has deployed more than 9 million sets containing the system, according to Gemstar.

Under the terms of the agreement, Thomson will pay license fees to Gemstar-TV Guide based on the number of units sold that include the IPG technology, with no minimum commitments, according to Gemstar.

‘CSI’ Repeat Puts CBS on Top: CBS just edged out NBC for the night last night in adults 18 to 49, with a 3.9/12 to 3.8/12. A repeat of CBS’s “CSI” was the highest-rated show last night with a 4.8/14. Also performing well for the network was a repeat of “Without a Trace” (3.7/11), which won the head-to-head competition against a repeat of “ER” (2.9/9). NBC won the night’s opening hour with repeats of “Friends” (4.6/16) and “Scrubs” (4.1/13). CBS’s “The Amazing Race” held steady with a 3.1/10 to its 3.2/11 last week.

For the night, in adults 18 to 49, CBS won with a 3.9/12, followed by NBC (3.8/12), Fox (2.0/6) and ABC 1.9/6. CBS also won the night in total viewers with 11.3 million, followed by NBC (8.5 million), ABC (5.8 million) and Fox (4.8 million).