Channel 5 yesterday decided to move "A Current Affair" from midnight to the 11 p.m. weeknight time slot starting Monday, pushing "The Late Show" to 11:30 ...

The move was originally scheduled on all Fox-owned stations for Nov. 30, when "The Late Show" shows up with a new format, but Fox and WTTG decided to give local audiences some extra time to establish new viewer habits (Washington audiences for "The Late Show" are best in the country) ...

Patrick Buchanan, former White House aide to President Reagan, returns to Cable News Network's "Crossfire" and his longtime adversary Tom Braden, starting Nov. 2 ...

Buchanan was on the program from June 1982 until February 1985 when he left to write speeches for President Reagan. Since he's been gone, columnist Robert Novak has jousted with Braden on the live weeknight show on CNN at 7:30. Novak will continue as a substitute coanchor. Under terms of his new three-year contract, Buchanan will also do some political specials for CNN ...

Cameras for CBS News' "West 57th" have been following talk show king Larry King around for the past three weeks. A profile on the CNN and Mutual Broadcasting System talk show host could show up sometime during the November sweeps ...

As if he didn't have enough offers on his plate already (from Turner Broadcasting, ABC News and King World), King this week taped a gossip segment for the pilot of a show being produced for syndication next year by Lorimar and TV Guide ...

He said yesterday he was doing it "as a favor" for executive producer Susan Winston, but who knows? The weeknightly TV Guide show will be devoted strictly to TV ...

Dana Amalfard, formerly a producer at Five's "Panorama," has been named public service producer/writer at Channel 7. She replaces Fran Seeger, who is now freelancing in this market as a producer ...

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Striking members of Local 31 of the National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians will have three chances to vote on the contract offer from NBC today and tomorrow ...

Meetings will be held at the Knights of Columbus Hall at 5034 Wisconsin Ave. NW at 2 p.m. today and again at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. tomorrow. The 300 striking workers at the NBC News bureau here will vote by secret ballot. The meetings have been staggered so those with temporary jobs can work a voting time into their schedules. National vote results will be announced on Monday by NABET ...

In all some 2,800 NABET members -- camerapersons, writers, producers and technicians -- have been out against NBC since June 29. NABET leadership, although recommending against acceptance of the latest NBC offer, ordered a vote on the pact on Sunday ...

Meanwhile, grim rumors swept NBC headquarters at 30 Rock in New York yesterday that senior executives -- in a series of hush-hush meetings -- were considering as many as 200 layoffs at the network by the end of the year ... with perhaps another 300 in 1988 ...

As we've reported before, the NABET strike, during which management personnel have filled in for absent union members, has convinced parent GE that cuts that were already being considered after two recent studies -- and before the strike -- are feasible. Rumors say the cuts will eventually include NBC management ranks, too ...

CBS Sports announced yesterday that Richard Pinkham has been named vice president, marketing, for CBS Sports. He had been vice president, marketing services ...

He replaces Richard Goldstein, who was killed in an automobile accident over the Labor Day holiday. Mr. Goldstein had left his home to purchase the Sunday papers when his car was struck by a pickup truck ...

Mr. Goldstein is credited with the strategy of matching major sponsors to sports events in the last several years at a time when a major slump in advertising sales threatened sports schedules at all three networks. Included in the events he brought to CBS were the John Hancock Sun Bowl football game, the Mazda Gator Bowl, the Mercedes Mile on New York's Fifth Avenue and the Cadillac Polo championships ...

Channel 26 has scheduled a pledge drive for Nov. 27 through Dec. 6 ...

Now This The Monday Night Football game on ABC scored only a 12.9 national Nielsen rating and a 23 percent audience share, the second lowest rating ever in the series, which began in 1969 on the network (last year, the 'Skins-Giants game showed up against a Mets-Bosox World Series game to set the record at 8.7/14) ...

Locally however, the game between the Denver Broncos and the L.A. Raiders did a 14.9/26 on Channel 7 ...

On Sunday, according to overnight Nielsen ratings in major markets, the NFL audiences for replacement teams continued to sink among viewers ...

On CBS, in 15 major Nielsen markets, game one aCBS Sports reports that in 15 major markets, game one veraged an 11.1 Nielsen rating, down 24 percent from game one the previous week. Game two did an 11.4 in seven major markets, down 17 percent from the previous Sunday games, which aired in six markets ...

Locally, however, the 'Skins-Giants game on Channel 9 did a remarkable 28.5/52 ...

On NBC, with only one game Sunday, ratings were 10.0, down 27 percent from the previous week ...

On WRC, the Miami-Kansas City game scored a mere 5.6/13 ...

In the network news race, "CBS Evening News With Dan Rather" finished first for the third week in a row with an 11.4 national Nielsen rating and a 23 percent audience share. "NBC Nightly News With Tom Brokaw" was second at 9.5/20, while "ABC News with Peter Jennings" averaged a 9.2/18 ...

1 28.2 The Cosby Show 45 NBC 2 23.3 Murder, She Wrote 36 CBS 3 23.1 Growing Pains 37 ABC 4 21.9 Who's the Boss? 36 ABC 5 21.8 Moonlighting 34 ABC 6 20.2 Dallas 35 CBS 7 19.5 Newhart 30 CBS 8 19.2 After the Promise 30 CBS 9 18.7 AL Playoff (Thurs.) 32 NBC 18.7 Head of the Class 29 ABC 11 18.6 Designing Women 29 CBS 18.6 Magnum, P.I. 28 CBS 13 18.5 60 Minutes 32 CBS 18.5 ALF 30 NBC 15 17.6 Valerie's Family 27 NBC 16 17.2 AL Playoff (Weds.) 28 NBC 17 17.0 Perfect Strangers 28 ABC 18 16.8 AL Playoff (Sun.) 28 NBC 16.8 Hooperman 26 ABC 20 16.7 Haunted/Her Past 27 NBC

NBC won again last week with a 16.1/27, but CBS, aided by only so-so audiences on NBC for the baseball playoffs, moved close for the first time in the three weeks of the new season with a 15.1/25. ABC was third at 13.4/22 ...

ABC's "Max Headroom," now that ABC's "Once a Hero" has gone to the boneyard, finished in 65th and last place for the week ending Oct. 11 ...

CBS had help when "Dallas" jumped from 23rd to sixth for the week. ABC got no help from "Dolly," which debuted in fifth place three weeks ago but finished 27th, six slots lower than last week's 21st ...

The important 8 p.m. shows for CBS showed improvement on nearly every night last week, a key to improved performance for its entire primetime schedule ...

Monday's "Frank's Place" was up 12 percent over last week; Tuesday's "Houston Knights" was up 31 percent; Wednesday's "The Oldest Rookie" was up 13 percent; Thursday's "Tour of Duty" was up 16 percent for its best showing yet (to a 12.0/19 against "The Cosby Show"); Friday's "Beauty and the Beast" was down 7 percent; and Saturday's "My Sister Sam" was up 38 percent. Sunday's "60 Minutes" -- without a dynamite NFL lead-in -- was down 11 percent, however ...

Overall, CBS was up 14 percent for the week, winning Friday and Sunday. ABC was up 4 percent from the previous week, winning Tuesday; while NBC was down 7 percent, while winning Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday nights