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U.S. backs INTV regs

The Justice Dept. on Tuesday said it will not challenge the Assn. of Independent Television Stations’ voluntary program of viewer advisories and guidelines on TV violence.

The proposal would allow INTV to continue the effort it initiated with enactment ofthe Television Program Improvement Act of 1990.

The law granted a three-year antitrust exemption for joint activities aimed at lowering vid violence. The exemption expired Dec. 1, but Attorney General Janet Reno said its provisions would be honored indefinitely by the Justice Dept.

In a letter to INTV prez James Hedlund, Assistant Attorney General Anne Bingaman said the voluntary measures don’t warrant concern by the antitrust division. “The department has no present intention to challenge INTV’s proposed program to address television violence,” she wrote.

INTV plans to expand the program by coordinating the production of a series of anti-violence messages to be made available for broadcast by indie stations.

In keeping with the program, airing of the messages is strictly voluntary.

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