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Murdoch, Turner wage battle over South.

CHICAGO In yet another chapter of the battle between moguls Rupert Murdoch and Ted Turner, Murdoch's Fox Sports Net South last week filed a complaint against Turner Broadcasting and Time Warner.

Fox's complaint, filed in Superior Court in Fulton County, Ga., alleges Turner's plans to launch the regional network Turner South violates a noncompete agreement that Turner and Time Warner signed in 1996.

Fox maintains that when Fox/Liberty Networks bought Turner's 44% interest in regional sports web SportSouth in 1996, Turner and Time Warner agreed not to create their own regional sports network to compete with SportSouth, which was renamed Fox Sports Net South.

Launch in question

Fox's complaint seeks to enjoin Turner and parent company Time Warner from launching and operating Turner South as a regional sports network.

Earlier this year when Turner announced plans to launch Turner South, the company said the channel will carry 30-35 Atlanta Braves baseball games, 15 Atlanta Hawks NBA games and 48 Atlanta Thrashers hockey games each year. Turner owns all three sports teams.

Fox Sport Net South carries Braves and Hawks games. Turner has not sold the broadcast rights to its new NHL team the Thrashers to Fox Sports Net South.

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Author:Katz, Richard
Publication:Variety
Date:Jun 21, 1999
Words:200
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