Share story

Sony will place parental controls on its forthcoming PlayStation 3, according to the Entertainment Software Association. That will mean all three major video-game console makers are promising parents help in restricting children’s access to violent video games.

The company wasn’t immediately prepared to comment.

Microsoft has parental controls in its new Xbox 360, which debuted last week. It also offers parental controls on the company’s Xbox Live online gaming service, limiting whom their children can interact with.

Earlier this month, Nintendo announced similar plans for its next-generation machine, Revolution, due 2006.


Restructuring news “soon,” CEO says

Merck Chief Executive Richard Clark said Sunday the drug maker will soon announce a restructuring plan, but he declined to comment on a Wall Street Journal report that thousands of jobs would be cut.

Merck, the No. 3 U.S. drug maker, faces billions of dollars in liability from 6,400 lawsuits over its recalled Vioxx painkiller. It also is preparing for sales declines from its Zocor cholesterol drug, which loses patent protection next year, and Fosamax osteoporosis treatment, off patent in 2008.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Merck board members received restructuring details last week.


“Bottom-up” news Web site is planned

The San Francisco Web entrepreneur who’s shaken the classified-ad business with his craigslist has plans to expand into journalism, too. Speaking at an Oxford University business-school forum, Craig Newmark said his news project will be introduced within three months.

He made it clear his new Web site will have a bottom-up approach to news stories and presentation, with readers playing the role of editors.

“Things do need to change,” he told the audience in Oxford, Britain, The Guardian reported. “The big issue in the U.S. is that newspapers are afraid to talk truth to power. The White House press corps don’t speak the truth … they are frightened to lose access they don’t have anyway.”

Newmark said his news project will involve Web technology to let readers decide which news stories are the most important.


Google approached over video ideas

U.S. television network CBS is in discussions with Internet media company Google for video search and on-demand video, CBS chairman Leslie Moonves said last week.

Viacom-owned CBS, which is splitting itself from the faster-growing MTV cable networks and Paramount film studios, is seeking other distribution outlets for its top-ranked shows, including the “CSI” franchise.

CBS’ discussions have also included talks with Yahoo!.


Feature lets users transfer programs

Struggling to maintain subscriber growth for its digital video recorders, TiVo will test a feature that allows viewers to transfer programs to Apple’s iPod and Sony’s PlayStation Portable.

The system lets subscribers download recordings through their personal computer to the devices, TiVo said.

The feature will be available as early as the first quarter of 2006.

The Alviso, Calif., company, whose recorders allow television viewers automatically to record shows and skip commercials, is adding features to attract new users as companies including DirecTV Group and Comcast introduce their own video recorders that match many of TiVo’s functions.

Compiled from MarketWatch, Reuters, Bloomberg News and The Associated Press