ABC News' "Capital to Capital" two-hour special late Tuesday night, linking members of Congress with senior Soviet executives in a live discussion of mutual security, averaged a 5.1 Nielsen rating and a 21 percent audience share in 15 major TV markets ...

That includes a 4.4/18 on Channel 7 here. In the 15 big city markets, the public affairs program outdrew CBS late night fare (4.5/19) and even edged, ever so slightly, Johnny Carson and David Letterman on NBC (5.1/20) ...

The program, first in a series of three, was seen live on Soviet TV simultaneously with the U.S. broadcast, which started at 11:30 p.m. here. ABC broadcast before an audience in the Longworth House Office Building. Similar telecasts, on the subjects of human rights and regional conflicts, are scheduled to air Oct. 14 and Nov. 17 on ABC ...

Overnightski ratings for "Capital to Capital" in the top 15 markets in the U.S.S.R. -- including both Minsk and Pinsk -- were not immediately available ...

Channel 26 said yesterday it will end its coverage of Judge Robert Bork's confirmation hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee with tomorrow's broadcast ...

A spokesman for WETA said "financial restraints" and an editorial decision that by close of business tomorrow enough of the pro- and anti-Bork witnesses will have been heard to give a "fair range" of opinions on the judge's nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court ...

Speaking of WETA, have we told you that its "Smithsonian World" won a primetime Emmy in the outstanding informational series category? Consider it done ...

Negotiators for NBC and 2,800 striking members of the National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians broke off talks Tuesday after only six hours. No further bargaining sessions are scheduled ...

The Tuesday meeting, called by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, was the first since Sept. 1. Gayle Wineriter, special assistant to the director of the agency, in a statement after the talks ended abruptly, said FMCS mediators "were not able to make any progress" ...

"Both sides are far apart," NBC spokeswoman McClain Ramsey said yesterday. "We went down there hoping to put together a package that the union membership could vote on. But they wanted to discuss the letter" from NBC president Robert Wright, which was distributed to NBC's 8,000 employes on Sept. 10 ...

Ramsey said the parties didn't get around to discussing what she called NBC "concessions" made in an Aug. 29 meeting ...

John Krieger, a NABET spokesman, said the union was angered by Wright's implication in the Sept. 10 letter that the strike was close to settlement and that the union had "misunderstood some of the issues" ...

"This strike is going to be a lot more bitter," Krieger said. "It is very clear and obvious to the membership that this dispute is a concentrated effort on the part of the General Electric Co., parent of NBC, to bust this union and we will not permit it. We're not coming back to work under the terms that are on the table" ...

Ramsey said NBC would be willing to return to the table when the federal agency issues a call ...

NABET members, including cameramen, producers, writers and technicians, have been on strike against NBC since June 29 ...

About 300 employes at the NBC bureau here are affected by the walkout ...

The Sept. 1 talks broke off in disagreement over proposed language governing use of non-union personnel to cover sports and news events. Krieger said other issues in dispute include the length of the contract and grievance and arbitration issues. The previous contract with the network expired March 31 ...

Also in the News

Good news for poor old ABC. Specials introducing "Full House" and "I Married Dora," both of which will eventually show up on the Friday night schedule, registered 21.7/34 and 20.3/33 respectively Tuesday night (each rating point representing 886,000 TV homes) ...

More good news for ABC: Aaron Spelling, whose 17-year exclusive deal with ABC ended last month, has signed a non-exclusive programming contract with CBS ...

Aaron Spelling Productions Inc. said the agreement covered production of pilots, TV series and movies for TV. It includes a firm 13-episode commitment for one TV series and for two TV movies to be broadcast next season on CBS ...

Spelling said he had not yet held talks with Fox or NBC but would be willing to discuss similar production deals with them. He supplied ABC with something like 2,000 hours of programming over the 17 years. His "Dynasty" is still on ABC ...

And surely you remember last year's "Life With Lucy?" ...

Charles Gibson takes a break from "Good Morning America" next week. Monday and Tuesday, correspondent Steve Fox will join Kathleen Sullivan as co-anchor. For the rest of the week, Barbara Walters will join Sullivan (Barbara helped out last December, too) ...

Psychologists from Columbia University last year reported the number of teenage suicides in the New York city area increased following the broadcast of three fictional movies about suicide in 1984 and 1985 ...

Now researchers at the University of California in San Diego have come up with figures contradicting the Columbia study ...

They examined the number of teenage suicides in California and Pennsylvania before and after the broadcast of the same three (unnamed) movies and said they found no evidence of an increase in teenage suicides after the films were shown ...

The report by David P. Phillips and Daniel J. Paight is published in The New England Journal of Medicine ...

"We conclude that it is premature to be concerned about possibly fatal effects of fictional televised films about suicide," the researchers said. "{We found} no evidence that the television broadcast of fictional suicide stories trigger an increase in suicides." ...

Phillips has also published a study in which he found an increase in teenage suicides following television news reports about real suicides ...

Phillips said he still believes news reports about suicide can prompt imitative behavior among teenagers. He speculated that true stories may have a different effect than fictional movies because they are about real people and are reported repeatedly by number TV stations and newspapers ...

An estimated 10,000 teenagers commit suicide each year in the United States ...

More on Ratingzzz

Specifically, more on last week's primetime numbers, which came in so late Tuesday Captain Airwaves had no time in which to apply the careful reasoning and thoughtful analysis he usually expends on the complex subject ...

Suffice it to say, the count for the week ending Sept. 20 concludes the 52-week 1986-87 season, which NBC won going away with a 15.9 Nielsen rating and an average weekly 27 percent share of the primetime audience for the year (the "official" 30-week season runs from September until April) ...

Indeed, so overpowering were Mr. Cosby and the rest of the NBC gang, the network lost only three weeks -- Christmas, New Year's and the Super Bowl ...

CBS was second at 13.8/23, while ABC hit the bottom with a 12.5/21. It was the third yearly win in a row for NBC, which was up 1 percent in ratings over 1985-86. CBS lost 5 percent; ABC was down 7 from the previous year ...

Besides the Top 20, which we listed yesterday, here are some highlights from last week, including the performances of some of the New Series Entries ...

CBS' "Wiseguy" finished in 21st place; NBC's "A Year in the Life" was 26th; ABC's Barbara Walters special was 27th; CBS' "Frank's Place" was 28th; and "20/20," without CBS' "Falcon Crest" to stare down, was 32nd ...

CBS' "The Oldest Rookie" was 34th; and NBC's "Private Eye" tied for 38th ...

Worst performance for a new series entry: ABC's Saturday entry, "Once a Hero," which finished 60th among 61 programs last week ...

Outside the Top 20, the news wasn't too promising, overall, for series returns, although CBS' "Designing Women" and "Kate & Allie" tied for 22nd ...

NBC's "Rags to Riches" came back in 38th; CBS' "Houston Knights" returned in a tie for 42nd; ABC's "The Charmings" debuted in 47th; its Thursday lead-in, "Sledge Hammer!" was 51st; and ABC's "Max Headroom" returned in 52nd ...

Among the movies, the above-average "Soldier's Story" on CBS scored a below-average 41st ...