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"We're going to have a shareholders vote for both Time Warner and AOL a week from today, and that indicates the view that we believe the transaction will close by the fall."
—Time Warner Chairman Gerald Levin
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AOL, TIME WARNER TO MERGE IN AUTUMN, LEVIN CONFIDENT

Ceremony Will Be Held Outdoors, Reception To Follow At Tony Roma's—Karaoke, Free Booze Provided
Time Warner Chairman gerald levin',390,400);">gerald levin',390,400);">Gerald Levin said Friday that he was confident the planned merger with AOL would be completed by this autumn.

However, he refused to comment directly on gaining anti-trust approval in Europe ahead of the EU's decision on Monday.

"AOL/Time Warner is a big idea, but it's non-traditional in the sense that really there are no overlapping businesses," Levin said at the Fortune Global Forum in Paris. "But we're going to have a shareholders vote for both Time Warner and AOL a week from today, and that indicates the view that we believe the transaction will close by the fall."

Levin also said he expects that music will eventually be available free of charge through the Internet, similar to radio distribution. But artists will still demand to be compensated for use of their creations, he said.

"Intellectual property and copyright protection is a universal theme," he said, predicting that developers of software such as Napster will eventually enter into licensing agreements similar to the deals recently agreed to by MP3.com.

The European Commission said on Tuesday it was pushing back to June 19 its decision on whether to open an in-depth four-month investigation into the merger of Time Warner and AOL. Its original date was June 8, but a spokesman said the commission wanted extra time to study recently-received information before deciding whether or not to green-light the merger.

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