September 19, 1988 12:00 PM

This year’s Summer Games are being held unusually late on the calendar. NBC tells us that this was done to avoid Korean monsoons. But NBC also acknowledges that the scheduling helps the ratings: 20 percent more homes have TVs turned on in prime time during the fall than during the summer. The network paid $300 million for the rights to the Games, and that’s why it is eager to convince us that the time difference between here and Seoul—14 hours for the East Coast, 17 for the West Coast—will help coverage. Morning and afternoon events from Korea will be shown live in our prime time; in all, three-quarters of NBC’s 179½ hours of coverage are supposed to be live.

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