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Playboy's profits are falling

By Editorial Staff
Published January 1, 1989

CHICAGO, IL (FR) – Playboy Enterprises, apparently bending to pressure from anti-pornography activists, is taking another obvious step to change its corporate image. After several years of declining magazine sales, and the 1988 closing of all of its Playboy Clubs, the company’s video department is now reporting huge losses in cable subscribers.

When the “Playboy Channel” began several years ago – offering a mixture of pornographic movies and documentaries – the format was touted as the future of Playboy. But sources record that the video format has been a money loser from the beginning. The number of cable subscribers has dropped more than 30 percent to about 400,000 from a peak of 743,000 in 1984.

This has prompted corporate president Christie Hefner to take a second look at the Playboy image itself and how it should be portrayed to the public. Plans are now underway to change the television programming from edited X-rated films to more mainstream R-rated films, and to rename the channel because of viewer and operator opposition to the Playboy image.

The new channel, according to Hefner, will still carry some of the Playboy Video Centerfold and sex-oriented talk shows, but it will be called “Night Life” and will be co-sponsored by another company. “If we can make it happen, it has the most significant profit upside in the next three years of anything we’re working on right now,” said Hefner.

Playboy publicity spokesperson Terry Tomcison, speaking from her office in Chicago, confirmed that the company is seeking to appeal to a “broader audience.” She also added that co-sponsors for the new format have not been found at this point, and that the company has “nothing new to announce” about its plans until the new format is fully funded.

Cable operators around the U.S. apparently plan to continue avoiding the Playboy Channel. Lynn Skinner, customer service director for Cox Cable in Oklahoma City, reports that her company dropped the channel in 1985. “We look at what the viewer wants,” said Skinner, “and we had too many religious people calling in to complain about it.” Skinner also related that, after the channel was dropped, no one ever called in to say that they wanted the Playboy Channel reinstated in the programming selection.

Rich Gilman, director of studio operations for Heritage Cablevision in Des Moines, Iowa, said that his 1985 decision to drop Playboy was strictly a “business decision. We can only offer four pay channels, and the ones we offer reach a higher subscriber level than Playboy did.” Gilman stated that subscribers to the Playboy Channel tended to subscribe for a few months and then drop the service, whereas subscribers to other services like H.B.O. and Cinemax are usually long-term customers.

When asked whether Heritage Cablevision might reconsider its decision if Playboy changes its format, Gilman said, “We have no interest in carrying another pay service. It was not a good business decision.”


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Amazing GraceAmazing Grace: The History and Theology of Calvinism (DVD)

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Just what is Calvinism?

Does this teaching make man a deterministic robot and God the author of sin? What about free will? If the church accepts Calvinism, won’t evangelism be stifled, perhaps even extinguished? How can we balance God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility? What are the differences between historic Calvinism and hyper-Calvinism? Why did men like Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Spurgeon, Whitefield, Edwards and a host of renowned Protestant evangelists embrace the teaching of predestination and election and deny free will theology?

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The Abortion Matrix: Defeating Child Sacrifice and the Culture of Death (DVD)

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Is there a connection between pagan religion and the abortion industry?

This powerful presentation traces the biblical roots of child sacrifice and then delves into the social, political and cultural fall-out that this sin against God and crime against humanity has produced in our beleaguered society.

Conceived as a sequel and update to the 1988 classic, The Massacre of Innocence, the new title, The Abortion Matrix, is entirely fitting. It not only references abortion’s specific target – the sacred matrix where human beings are formed in the womb in the very image of God, but it also implies the existence of a conspiracy, a matrix of seemingly disparate forces that are driving this holocaust.

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As the allusion to the film of over a decade ago suggests, the viewer may learn that things are not always as they appear to be. The Abortion Matrix reveals the reality of child-killing and strikes the proper moral chord to move hearts to fulfill the biblical responsibility to rescue those unjustly sentenced to death and to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves (Proverbs 24:11,12; 31:8,9).

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Freedom: The Model of Christian Liberty (DVD)

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Patrick Henry’s famous declaration not only helped launch the War for Independence, it also perfectly summarized the mindset that gave birth to, and sustained, the unprecedented experiment in Christian liberty that was America.

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This presentation is a similar call, not to one but many. By reintroducing the principles of freedom that gave birth to America, it is our prayer that Jesus, the true and only ruler over the nations, will once again be our acknowledged Sovereign, that we may again know and exult in the great truth that “where the Spirit of the LORD is, there is liberty” (2 Cor. 3:17).

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This DVD features “Liberty: The Model of Christian Liberty” along with “Dawn’s Early Light: A Brief History of America’s Christian Foundations.” Bonus features include a humorous but instructive collection of campaign ads and Eric Holmberg’s controversial YouTube challenge concerning Mitt Romney’s campaign for president.

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The Silent Scream (DVD) Eight Languages

“When the lives of the unborn are snuffed out, they often feel pain, pain that is long and agonizing.” – President Ronald Reagan to National Religious Broadcasters Convention, January 1981

Ronald Reagan became convinced of this as a result of watching The Silent Scream – a movie he considered so powerful and convicting that he screened it at the White House.

The modern technology of real-time ultrasound now reveals the actual responses of a 12-week old fetus to being aborted. As the unborn child attempts to escape the abortionist’s suction curette, her motions can be seen to become desperately agitated and her heart rate doubles. Her mouth opens – as if to scream – but no sound can come out. Her scream doesn’t have to remain silent, however … not if you will become her voice. This newly re-mastered version features eight language tracks and two bonus videos.

“…a high technology “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” arousing public opinion just as Harriet Beecher Stowe’s 1852 antislavery novel ignited the abolitionist movement.” – Sen. Gordon Humphrey, Time Magazine

Languages: English, Spanish, French, South Korean, Chinese, Russian, Portuguese, Japanese

Running Time: 28 minutes

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The Abortion Matrix DVD: Update

The Abortion Matrix:
Defeating Child Sacrifice and the Culture of Death

is a 195-minute presentation that traces the biblical roots of child sacrifice and then delves into the social, political and cultural fall-out that this sin against God has produced. You can order this series on DVD, read the complete script and view clips on-line...
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