Brill defends Simpson coverage

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The O.J. Simpson trial will end in a verdict and not a mistrial or hung jury, predicted Court TV Founder-CEO Steven Brill in a speech before the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California. Defending the role of cameras in the courtroom and Court TV's coverage of the trial, Mr. Brill said the verdict will be "a verdict that most people who've watched the trial understand and respect." Mr. Brill attacked other Simpson trial coverage--most notably that of the E! Entertainment cable channel, whose president, Lee Masters, ironically is chairman of the ACLU branch and hosted Mr. Brill at Wednesday's luncheon. Stating that he would fight to defend E!'s legal right to cover the trial, Mr. Brill asked if such coverage "doesn't further coarsen society and cheapen tragic events when a channel that calls itself the Entertainment Network carries a double murder trial gavel to gavel, anchored by a diet food pitch woman, and complete with gossip reports and commentary from hair stylists and a dog psychologist."

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