Friday, September 22, 2006

New Political Internet TV Station To Be Launched


10th October will see the launch of Britain’s first political Internet TV Channel. 18DoughtyStreet Talk TV will broadcast for four hours a night, Mondays to Thursdays, from studios in London’s Bloomsbury with a mix of live and pre-recorded programmes. It aims to break the mould of current affairs television with a mix of opinionated and controversial programming.

In a groundbreaking initiative the station is building a network of 100 nationwide and worldwide citizen journalist reporters, each equipped with their own camcorder, which they can use to film reports for 18DoughtyStreet to broadcast.

At the heart of the station will be a website of blogs and daily votes. Comments left on the blogs will shape the content of the programmes. The daily votes will help determine which news stories headline every programme. Programme presenters will have access to the blogs during live programming, with the viewer seeing the blog next to the live streaming screen on their computers. All programmes will be available for download after livestreaming.

The channel’s founders believe that conventional political TV has let down its audience by dumbing down political debate to the lowest common denominator. It believes that no political party truly understands the electorate’s disappointment with the current state of politics. It aims to be an anti-establishment channel – championing rebel opinions in all of the mainstream parties and constantly questioning authority.

18DoughtyStreet has recruited two of Britain’s most successful bloggers to be the main
presenters – Tim Montgomerie of and Iain Dale, Britain’s best
known blogger.

Tim Montgomerie will present UP FRONT - a fair and opinionated news programme at
8pm every night - all based on the output of that day’s blogs.

VOX POLITIX WITH IAIN DALE will go out at 9pm. Dale will be joined by alternate
co-presenters Rena Valeh and Zoe-Ann Phillips as well as two sofa-guests. The show will
be a mix of news and discussion with the final half hour devoted to a thirty minute debate
on a news topic of the day.

Other programmes on the channel include...
• END OF THE DAY SHOW – Live one hour discussion show each night at 11pm – including a long preview of the following day’s newspapers
• ONE TO ONE – a 30 minute interview designed to restore the idea of serious discussion
• PARTY TALK – with Zoe Ann Phillips – a Monday night show previewing the week in politics
• BROUGHT TO BOOK – Iain Dale talks to guests from the world of political books
• SELL THE IMPOSSIBLE will task a panel of expert politicians and bloggers with the job of devising a strategy to sell controversial policies chosen by visitors to the station’s website.

There will also be specialist programmes – presented by anti-establishment campaign groups – that will spotlight the tax burden, the threat of terrorism and media bias.

The launch night of the channel will include an exclusive interview with Australian Prime Minister John Howard.

Tim Montgomerie said:
“In twelve months political blogs have broken the monopoly enjoyed by the Westminster commentators but blogging is only the beginning of the new media revolution. Over the next few years internet entrepreneurs are set to storm the decaying fortresses of the mainstream media. They will offer a radical alternative to the BBC’s pretence of impartiality, its obsession with personalities and its unwillingness to commit serious amounts of time to the concerns of ordinary voters. Big businesses, self-important NGOs and timid political elites should also
start preparing their defences.”

Iain Dale said:
“This channel is all about politics for adults. It really will be by the people for the people. We’re not going to get stuck in the Westminster village. We’ll be talking about what’s really being discussed in the pubs and clubs, not what the metropolitan elite think ought to be discussed. We’ll be using our blogs to set our agenda, not focus groups. We believe that within the next twelve months people will start watching internet TV through their normal TV screens. Few people realise that every TV screen has a plug in the back to which a computer can be
connected. Within twelve months Tim’s blog and my blog have become two of the three most read political blogs in Britain. We aim to replicate that success with 18DoughtyStreet Talk TV.”

Editor’s Note
18DoughtyStreet Talk TV will broadcast from purpose built studios at 18 Doughty Street,
in London’s Bloomsbury. It will use the latest streaming technology to broadcast live programmes on the internet. All programmes will be available for later download so people can watch them when they want to. Programmes will also be podcastable either on video or with sound only. The channel will initially broadcast Monday-Thursday, four hours per night from 8pm until Midnight. It will initially only be available on the internet.

You can visit the 18DoughtyStreet Blog HERE.


Anonymous said...

Do you really think this will work?

dizzy said...

good work Iain. Launching the day before my birthday

The Remittance Man said...

In the US C-Span brought political discussion and news back into the adult world, much to the amazement of the chattering classes so one can only hope that 18Doughty Street manages the same in this country.

My only reservation would be that it is a web based service and thus might find it more difficult to attract a viewership outside the political blogospere. Until the tv airwaves are opened up this could prove a limiting factor. Then again, maybe not.

Reservations aside I wish you and your chums all the best. said...

anon "Do you really think this will work?"

Of course not, he's doing it for a luagh because he's bored.

Anonymous said...

Where are you going to find adults?

Anonymous said...

Hope you aren't giving up the day job - i.e. keeping us entertained here.

Tapestry said...

i will definitely be watching. it will change the balance of power. the political news duopoly of Murdoch and the BBC needs smashing to pieces. this is the way to do it.

only thing not quite right maybe is the the strapline - politics for adults. sounds a little pompous/unrelaxed for a project that is so revolutionary.

18 doughty st - internet tv politics can never be the same.

Johnny Norfolk said...


This is realy good news. The problem is the media is generaly left wing and non more so than the BBC. I am sure you will have a lot of support as there are a lot of us out here.

Anonymous said...

Iain 9PM - that's your evenings with the Mrs gone - have you told her yet?

Anonymous said...

"Do you really think this will work?"

Well,only with a healthy dose of UKIP, of course! ;-)

Tapestry said...

or 'internet TV - where you set the agenda'
instant viewer feedback.

Anonymous said...

Great idea could not have come at a more opportune time.Might -repeat- might- wake the moronics at BBC to actually work for their pay. Anymore use of trailers looks likely to over take their actual programmes.


Rigger Mortice said...

good on you and TM,I'll watch.

have currently stopped watching Al-BBC political output/news.

Anonymous said...

You can get right thinking people into the studio but you can't guarantee the results.
Bloke from Guardian: This poll on "Cameron effect" is bad news for Brown, "beyond bad".
Nice young lady (Topaz?)from Sunday Telegraph jumps in faster than Hazel Blears on speed:If you look carefully this poll is very poor news for Cameron.

We are living in extraordinary times.

Anonymous said...

Well, it doesn't sound especially balanced - think you could do with a good leftie in there to even things up a bit ;-) ...but good luck anyway!

Anonymous said...

I'll be watching! (See: flattery pays)

Anonymous said...

Looks interesting... It's not so much breaking the media mold, though, as much as breaking the Biased BBC's strangehold on the topic!

Bob Piper said...

This can work if it attempts to open up some mature debate (I know, I can hear you saying that's good coming from him, and some irreverance would be welcome anyway) about politics and involves people from across the political spectrum. There will be some who think it will be a bit like Iain's blog and descend into 'Prescott bashing' and taking the piss out of Ming. Well, even if it does the fact is tens of thousands of people access ConservativeHome and Iain's site every month, so they must entertain people. If it provides alternative views to those we are spoon fed by Paxman, Humphreys, Neil and Snow it could succeed, but if it just becomes Tories talking to Tories it will most definitely fail.

AnyonebutBlair said...

I'm a political junkie, so will watch as much as I can...but do you think you'll get many viewers? How do you generate revenue? Will Guido get a camcorder?

Anonymous said...

Will the women presenters wear the hijab as mantilla-wearing Ruth Kelly seems to opine they should ?

Anonymous said...

Good luck sounds a good idea. Please please try to stop Tim M turning it into Taliban TV tho!

Glass House said...

I like the idea but have a horrible feeling that ". It aims to be an anti-establishment channel – championing rebel opinions in all of the mainstream parties and constantly questioning authority" just means 'right wing'

Anonymous said...

Interesting Iain, Noticed it in the .pdf file you posted for us.

Looks like it might be worth a look.

The Military Wing Of The BBC said...

Iain - will this channel be covered by OFCOM rules re equal time to each political party etc etc etc or will internet distribution side step these rules?

Blogs, I beleive have taken off because of the edgyness of their coverage. The dead hand of OFCOM rules would be the end to.

TV with political rumours and gossip appeals to me but perhaps not to main stream advertisers

CityUnslicker said...

can they afford all the make up for the presenters??

Will Parbury said...

The key to any credability is to have at least to at least some neutrality which this enterprise wholeheartedly fails to do. Tory central office on the web or what.

This enterprise might claim to be nice chaps really who wouldn't be biased. No doubt in the same vain as the Daily Mail.

Anonymous said...

So you think the People are adults, do you? I suspect you don't know them as well as I do. Best of luck with them!

Anonymous said...

Do you think you could maybe get someone who's not a Tory? Quite how you and Montgomerie can be classed as "controversial" I don't know.

Anonymous said...

2 Tory presenters - won't it appear just a little one-sided then?

stalin's gran said...

All very good - now will you please get rid of that picture of Julia Hartley bloody Brewer?

Anonymous said...

Won't the guys at be a little pissed off with your choice of programme name??

Anonymous said...

If you think the traditional media is so, y'know, over, which do you constantly use it/them to endorse you? You gain validation from it/them yet at the same time preach disdain. Hypocritical?

Anonymous said...

"There will also be specialist programmes – presented by anti-establishment campaign groups – that will spotlight the tax burden, the threat of terrorism and BBC bias.

The launch night of the channel will include an exclusive interview with Australian Prime Minister John Howard."

ROFL! Anti Establishment campaign groups?! Isn't this just a Tory attempt to co-op the rise of social media in this country?

Personally I think something like this is much needed but the political slant is a shame, British people would be better served by a non partisan effort...

Dr.Doom said...

You're going to: 'break the mould of mainstream political TV' by fronting a conservative party propaganda internet site?



neil craig said...

"The channel’s founders believe that conventional political TV has let down its audience by dumbing down political debate to the lowest common denominator"

I entirely agree with that. A century ago it was [possible for Gladstone to win an election by touring the country giving 3 hour speeches to packed halls about genocide in the Balkans. There is nothing intrinsicly wrong with the people that they are unable to understand something more complicated than a 12 word soundbite - it is the media that is inane.

I am however a little concerned that both people mentioned are prominent conservatives. At the least this seems to be a dubious marketing decision.

Anonymous said...

What's Julia done to upset you, Gran?

Johnny Norfolk said...

All these people worried about that it may be right wing.

I hope so as there is no where else for us to go. They just cant see how left wing and PC the media has become.

We have more than enough left wing views on the BBC.

Anonymous said...

Just saw Tim being interviewed on CH4's lunchtime news by that dreadfully smug presenter Krishnan Guru-Murthy.

He was asking about how the new channel will be unbiased and impartial, and bemoaning that it will be unregulated and not as fair as the BBC and CH4.

Nearly fell of my chair laughing at the smug little toady, although he looked as though he was having trouble keeping a straight face himself.

Hope it's a great success - wipe the floor with 'em Iain.

The Daily Pundit said...

Wardrobe, Mr Dale, wardrobe. I'll be keeping a close eye on you. But other than that the whole venture sounds fascinating. Good luck with it.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...
Do you really think this will work?"

Beats doing nothing and putting up with the BBC's cringe-worthy forced so called "Multi-culturism" and slanted far left wing biased views and propaganda.

Anonymous said...

How is this being funded? Not a loaded question or anything, just interested.

Anonymous said...

Good luck. I'll be watching.

Praguetory said...

Can you have an item on "mauling of the week" where a blogger has been rightly mauled for their "views"?

Anonymous said...

What do you guys think of Sunny Hundals piece about the BBC?

Wrinkled Weasel said...

I like the mauling of the week item so I'll second that.

Any chance of publicly humiliating an MP each week by exposing his entertaining sexual activities?

Is Lawrence Llewellyn-Bowen designing your ties?

Death to liberal toadies!!!! Behead them! Slap them with the sandal of shame!

Anonymous said...

Keepandbear from the heartland of the United States here

Good luck to you on this venture. There will be a lot of us watching you. It's good to know that there are still a few good people left in the old country. We look forward to seeing you put the fire to the L³'s in Europe.

Iain Dale said...

Anonymous 3.08. No, just done it on a whim really. OF COURSE I BELIEVE IT WILL WORK. Jeez!!!!

Remittance Man, If we can achieve half of what CPSAN have done I will be happy. I accept your reservation about internet TV but we believe that we are on the verge of an Internet TV revolution. Anyway, it may be that at some point we go on Sky digital, OFCOM permitting, natch.

Don Jameson at 8.33. This is my day job. DOughtyStreet is the night job. It won't affect what I do here.

Javelin at 8.49. Best not comment.

Paul Linford 9.11 The two female presenters are not Conservatives, nor will many of the guests be. This will not be the broadcasting arm of the Conservative Party.

Bob Piper 9.24. Got it in one. I agree. if it's just Tories talking to Tories it won't work. That is not the intention. I've spent most of today planning my first two weeks programming. The proof of the pudding will be when you see it.
AnyonebutBlair 9.24 We'll get viewers in exacly the same way our blogs have - by providing what people want. We're not going to splash limitless money on advertising, but we will be doing some targeted advertising. But hope it will get the support of all the blogs out there and they will think it worthwhile helping us market.
Tone made me do it at 9.55. No, Ofcome cannot regulate us (yet!). If we were on SKy Digital they would do so.

Anonymous at 10.17. See above. The two female presenters are not Tories. One is Labour and one is inclinded towards the LibDems.

Anonymous at 10.37 Don't see why. It's got an X at the end, not an S. Anywway, they hardly ever update their site. Vox Politics is not trademarked so far as I am aware. Anyway, it's a programme, not a website.

Oftenfunny at 10.39 You say "If you think the traditional media is so, y'know, over, which do you constantly use it/them to endorse you? You gain validation from it/them yet at the same time preach disdain. Hypocritical?"

I don;t think it;s over. Where have I said that? I just don't think it is doing a very good job at the moment. Should that precude me from writing or broadcasting for them? A bit of a warped logic I would have thought.

Dr Doom at 11.19 Oh dear. I'm trying to stifle a yawn. This is not a Conservative Party propaganda site. Not only have we not held discussions with the Conservatives about it, I suspect that they will think that their worst nightmare has just come true. Mr Montgomerie and I are not excatly known as signed up Notting Hill set Cameroons, are we?

Ed at 3.14 You ask how it is being funded. The channel is owned by Stephan Shakespeare, who is Joint MD of YouGov. He's built that up from scratch to become the country;s leading pollster. Not a bad track record!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I think this is a wonderful development and I look forward to the launch. Good luck to all involved.

Anonymous said...

i've given up on Al-Beeb (its beyond a joke), and although Sky is bearable,it really doesnt have a lot of indepth meat to it.

really looking forward to this.

The Remittance Man said...

While I have absolutely zero broadcasting experience, might I make one suggestion?

A weekly "Hanged by their own history" spot.

The idea would be to take a current event and review the action of a given politician or party; for example on majority voting in the eu. Then cast back a few months or so and broadcast some suitable sound bite where the same pol/party gave a completely contradictory statement or undertaking on the same topic. Then ask the said pol to explain himself on air.

As a variation you could hold a minister responsible for actions he authorised in, say the MOD, that are now going pearshaped even though he is now safely esconced in, say, the Home Office.

Watching the bastards squirm on live tv would definately be entertaining and might even begin to educate some of them that there are consequences to their actions. It would also inform the public far better than the current MSM does about the mendacity of our so-called leaders.

Rachel said...

I am not a Tory, and I will do my own make up.So there.

Cheers Iain. Look forward to it.

Anonymous said...

Great idea!

Will it work?

Anything which adds pluralism to the political mix will help to break the Collective groupthink holding Europeans captive to one-thought thought.

When the vicious attacks are waged against you look at them as verification that free thought scares the heck out of the Collective groupthink.

Cheers from the US

Anonymous said...

all the best for the launch and the future

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