EU'S TIRED ANTI-AD BIAS

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Some European policymakers can't shake their hostility to advertising. Now it's staffers at the European Union who are floating proposals that could ban ads from TV channels of the future.

What they may accomplish, instead, is to deny Europeans the benefits and enjoyment these future channels may bring because, without advertiser support, many will simply never see the light of day.

The U.S. is bursting with ideas for new cable TV channels and experiments with interactive TV. Media pioneers are willing to bet seed capital to test these ideas precisely because they see profits down the road if they attract advertiser involvement.

There is room in any system for commercial-free TV services available on a subscriber fee basis or pay-per-view. But so much more variety is possible if advertiser-supported services are allowed to blossom.

Before Europeans see this new world, however, it's EU policymakers who must see the light about the benefits of ad-supported media.

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