Archive for Saturday, August 18, 2001

CBS postpones controversial ‘Family Law’ summer rerun

August 18, 2001


— CBS postponed a "Family Law" rerun that one of its largest advertisers, Procter & Gamble Co., said was too controversial for its commercials.

The network characterized its decision as routine and noted that Procter & Gamble did not advertise its products when that particular "Family Law" episode aired last spring.

CBS said it does not allow its advertisers to dictate programming decisions.

"This was an ordinary, internal decision in the process of scheduling summer reruns," CBS spokesman Gil Schwartz said. "If you only plan to repeat a few episodes of a series, it is common business sense to rebroadcast the episodes with the most sales potential."

Procter & Gamble screens programs in which it is considering advertising and tends to shy away from controversial subject matters.

"We know that 'Family Law' is the type of show that will occasionally present content issues for us and if we have issues with a particular episode, we don't advertise," Procter & Gamble spokesman Tom Millikin said. "We would not, and have not, ever approached a network to suggest that they air a less polarizing episode."

Among the Cincinnati-based company's products are Secret anti-perspirant, Head & Shoulders shampoo, Cascade dishwasher detergent, Tide laundry detergent, Folgers coffee and Pringles snack food.

In the episode scheduled to run this week, Kathleen Quinlan's character helps a woman fight manslaughter charges after her 8-year-old son accidentally shoots and kills his older brother with her handgun.

CBS said the episode will be rerun next month, after its sales department has more time to fill the advertising time.

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