Global Warming: Kirch, Bertelsmann Try to Appease EC

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Munich, Germany -- The Kirch Group and Bertelsmann AGturned in a new proposal to European Commission antitrust authorities in Brussels lastweek to try to get their planned digital merger approved when it comes before thecommission sometime in the next month.

Neither party would comment on the new terms proposed tothe EC, but one theory is that Kirch and Bertelsmann are considering bringing in anon-German partner to make the alliance more palatable to the EC.

One possible scenario making the rounds involves Kirch andBertelsmann concentrating solely on programming, with Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. orhis majority-owned British Sky Broadcasting taking control of the German satelliteplatform.