Viacom wants to buy CNN

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Those acquisitive folks at Viacom Inc. are now stalking
Cable News Network.

Hungry to increase his cable portfolio, Viacom president Mel Karmazin told a
group of advertising executives he approached the news network's parent company,
AOL Time Warner Inc., last week about purchasing CNN.

Karmazin envisions CNN as a mate of Viacom's CBS.

Since the broadcast network's news department has no ready cable outlet, the
two networks have periodically danced about some sort of joint venture to share
newsgathering costs.

But this is the first time Viacom or CBS has suggested an outright
takeover.

Speaking at a small group of the Association of National Advertisers Wednesday,
Karmazin indicated that the approach didn't get a warm reception.

An AOL Time Warner spokesman said only, "CNN is not for sale." Viacom
officials would not comment at press time.

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