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A party of 11 public broadcasting officials departs New York Sept. 25 on a 10-day visit to Moscow, where they will discuss the possible exchange of TV and radio programs with Soviet officials . . .
It was withdrawal of minimal financial support for the trip during a Corporation for Public Broadcasting board meeting in May that led to charges that CPB board chairman Sonia Landau was "politicizing" the board and the resignation soon thereafter of CPB President Ed Pfister . . .
In pushing the motion for withdrawal of support, Landau had claimed CPB had no business dealing with the Soviets when the White House was in the midst of negotiations with the U.S.S.R. . . .
Similar groups of public broadcasters had made previous get-acquainted trips to Australia, Japan, China and several European broadcasting centers, using some funds from CPB, but without protest . . .
No one from the CPB staff will be on next week's trip. But among the party will be CPB board members Sharon Percy Rockefeller, who will pay her own way, and Lloyd Kaiser. He is president of WQED in Pittsburgh, a producer of programs for PBS, and the station will pay his expenses . . .
The entire trip is expected to cost some $22,000, with participating stations and the Public Broadcasting Service picking up the tab (some of which comes from grants) . . .
Also in the party: Al Stern, chairman of the PBS board; PBS programming chief Sue Weil; Gerald Slater, executive vice president of WETA; William Kobin, president of KCET in Los Angeles; and Stephen Kimatian, executive director of Maryland Public Television . . .
Others include Dr. Donald Mullally, of WILL in Champaign, Ill., and chairman of the National Public Radio board; Bob Kotlowitz, vice president of WNET in New York; David Liroff, station manager of WGBH in Boston; and Jack McBride, general manager of KUON, Lincoln, Neb. . . . Moving Right Along
Will Maria Shriver's hairdresser please call Dave Marash's barber? . . .
In a nice piece of irony, NBC says that Steven Bochco, the creator of "Hill Street Blues" who was fired when the cost of "Hill Street" episodes went way over budget, has received a commitment from the network that his new series about lawyers will be the 13-week replacement for "Hill Street" when that show goes into reruns next spring.
Bochco maybe should set a January target date. "Hill Street" may not last until next spring, and NBC Chairman Grant Tinker has already expressed his desire for a lawyer series (he loved "The Defenders") to be on his network soon. "Hill Street's" ratings are not all that good, even if its demographics are.
Some 266 PBS stations will carry "The Abortion Battle" tonight; another 15 will carry it on a delayed basis; 14 stations, including 10 in the South Carolina system, have rejected the program outright because of content; and another 11 won't carry the program because of overlap of markets . . .
Channel 13 in New York, which was caught up in a brief local flap when the station opted to take a look at the potentially controversial program before scheduling it, has now decided to air it later this fall, perhaps in a shorter form . . .
ABC Monday Night Football, which is already up 8 percent over last year's ratings (see last week's numbers, above), attracted a 16.9 rating and a 29 percent audience share Monday night in the 10-market Nielsen overnight ratings with the Pittsburgh-Cleveland game, one of the less attractive matchups of the season for the network . . .
In football-crazy Washington, the game did a 23.6/43 on Channel 7 . . .
Speaking of Seven, and pro football, the debut of "The John Riggins Show" in the unusual 6:30 p.m. time slot Monday night attracted a Nielsen rating of 4.8 and an 11 share . . .
It's much too early to tell about the wisdom of cutting into the early-evening news hours that way, but at least in the first outing, the Riggins audience was off almost a full ratings point from its lead-in 6 p.m. news audience . . .
Hold all calls to Captain Airwaves between noon and 1 p.m. today! . . .
Captain Airwaves' number one favorite of the Silver Screen, Teri Garr, will be on Channel 5's "Panorama" . . .
Also on hand, although Airwaves probably won't even notice them, will be John (I kind of miss those granny glasses) Denver, Garrison ("A Prairie Home Companion") Keillor, plus John Forsythe and Linda Evans, who will be talking about "Dynasty" via satellite . . .
(By some weird coincidence, WTTG starts its "Dynasty" reruns with a three-hour telecast thereof Sunday night) . . .
CBS Entertainment announced yesterday that a four-hour mini-series based on Norman Katkov's novel "Blood and Orchids" has begun filming in Hawaii. It's a story about a 1930s trial of four Hawaiians falsely accused of raping a U.S. Navy officer's wife . . .
ABC's entire weekly prime-time schedule will be closed-captioned for the hearing-impaired this coming season. In addition, another 20 hours a week of ABC programming will be closed-captioned, including "Good Morning America," "ABC World News Tonight With Peter Jennings" and certain specials, a total of 42 hours weekly in all . . .
CBS will have eight to 12 hours close-captioned in the average prime-time week, NBC five . . .