Mandatory Blocking Is What's Objectionable

"Playboy Challenges Blocking Provisions" (Feb. 28) left a misleading impression about a suit filed by Playboy Entertainment Group that challenges part of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

Playboy fully supports the right of individuals to block any cable programming they wish--for whatever reason they wish. Parents should be able to control what comes into their homes. We have held this position for years and we still hold it. Indeed, we support Section 504 of the act, which mandates this kind of individual blocking for no charge at a consumer's request.

We object to Section 505 that requires that new equipment be installed systemwide in every household in every cable system with adult programming--whether or not customers request or need it. The cost of this may well be passed along to all customers.

Cable systems do not have the equipment nor manpower to comply within the 30 days required by the act. If they don't, the programming will still be available but at a reduced number of hours, thus inconveniencing viewers and cable systems alike.

Besides being unfair and unconstitutional, Section 505 could hit cable customers in their pocketbooks--all for an unnecessary purpose when an adequate remedy already exists.

CHRISTIE HEFNER

Chairman and CEO

Playboy Enterprises Inc.

Chicago

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