TV shells out nearly Half a million dollars as quiz craze hits peak.

Last week the quiz show craze spread over the TV channels like the prize money showering on the shows' contestants. In seven days nearly $500,000 was paid out, or pledged against re-appearances, to an assortment of men, women, children and dogs as advertiser tried to outbid advertiser for an audience. As a result it has become difficult to get out of quiz show range at any hour of the day. Not counting the innumerable local shows there are now 21 question-and-answer contests on the three big networks - and seven of them are in action five days a week. On NBC, for instance, commencing at 11a.m. four one-half-hour quizzes follow one another. On Tuesday night there is only one hour in the period between 7:30 and 11 p.m. when the viewer need he out of sight or hearing of someone asking or answering a question -and being paid amply for doing so. In contrast to the impressive erudition of Columbia University Instructor Charles Van Doren and 11-year-old stock market statistician Leonard Ross, TV added a lucrative contest for talking dogs. The canines which could get out bi-syllabic words intelligibly on the early morning dog-talent search won $500 a word, with a $20,000 limit on canine loquacity. The 4-year-old terrier was the week's big winner there as he convinced the show's board of human judges that he was really speaking.

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