IN BRIEF

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Tribune gets barter rights to Weakest Link

Tribune Entertainment has snapped up the barter ad sales rights to NBC Enterprises' syndicated version of Weakest Link, set to launch in January. In February, the two struck a multiyear deal under which Tribune will oversee barter activities for several NBC syndicated efforts, including fall 2001 entry The Other Half and long-running weekly George Michael Sports Machine.

Strong season finale for the Sopranos

The Sopranos finished strong but didn't rub out the Sunday-night competition. The season finale of the Home Box Office hit drew 9.5 million viewers, shy of the 11.3 million that its third-season debut drew. HBO is available only in a third of TV households, however. The Sopranos ranked fourth among all TV networks that night, behind CBS, ABC and Fox but ahead of NBC.

FCC seeks comment on affiliate claims

The FCC is stepping up its review of abuse allegations filed by more than 600 affiliates against the Big Four networks, by asking for public comment, due July 23. Replies are due Aug. 22. In March, the Network Affiliated Stations Alliance asked the FCC to investigate a host of network practices.

Univision gets OK to buy USA stations

Univision snared the FCC's go-ahead to buy 13 USA Broadcasting stations last week. The country's largest Spanish-language broadcaster plans to use them to launch a 24-hour English-programmed channel.

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