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 ConservativeHome.com 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.