NAB Seeks To Delay People Meters

Washington—The National Association of Broadcasters TV Board asked Nielsen to postpone the rollout of local people meters in New York. It's scheduled for April 8, but Nielsen has been catching heat from broadcasters, particularly Fox, and government and public-interest types concerned that the new meters undercount African-American and Hispanic viewing, particularly in inner-city areas (see story, page 20).

"We believe it is Nielsen's responsibility to fully address the concerns of its broadcast clients, and all media buyers and sellers, before implementing such a fundamental change to the industry currency," the NAB statement said. Last week Nielsen said it planned to proceed as scheduled.

Reality Returns to CBS

Los Angeles—Big Brother and The Amazing Race will return to CBS for a fifth summer season. They premiere back to back Tuesday July 6. Big Brother will then settle into its regular three nights a week: Tuesdays at 9 p.m., Thursdays at 8, and Saturdays at 9. One houseguest will be evicted every Thursday. The Amazing Race will air Tuesdays at 10 p.m., with 11 couples competing for $1 million.

Also on the summer slate is Mike Fleiss's The Will, in which family members battle for the assets of a relative. Premiere date has yet to be set.

Cable Issue Headed for High Court?

Washington—The Supreme Court is the last hope for cable operators seeking to bar competing Internet providers from their high-speed networks. Last week, the federal appeals court in San Francisco refused to reconsider its October decision opening up cable Internet to competitors. The FCC argued that it should have the right to decide if cable lines must open. It has a week to ask the San Francisco court not to put its open-access ruling into effect. The cable industry is asking the FCC to appeal to the Supreme Court posthaste.