Early next year, a new TV channel called talkTV will launch in the UK.
The channel will be launched by News UK, the Murdoch-owned media company that boasts titles such as The Times, The Sun, and talkRADIO.
News UK promises that talkTV will broadcast “proper hourly news bulletins”, as well as sports, entertainment, current affairs, debate, opinion and documentaries.
New and existing News UK talent will contribute to the new venture, with Murdoch announcing Piers Morgan as the channel’s first major hire.
What do we know so far?
The channel will be streamed live from new TV studios at New UK’s HQ in the News Building in London Bridge.
The company has already softly launched talkRADIO TV which can be streamed on an app, online, or on smart TVs. The station features presenters such as Julia Hartley-Brewer, Mike Graham, Trisha Goddard, and Rob Rinder.
Murdoch’s stable of radio brands (talkRADIO, talkSPORT, Virgin Radio and Times Radio) already produce video content, so extending their broadcasts to television seems like a natural progression.
The news of talkTV’s launch has been announced just days after veteran broadcaster Andrew Neil stepped down from right-wing channel GB News, which has only been on-air since June.
Murdoch previously planned to launch a 24-hour British news channel that pitched itself as a British equivalent to Fox News. However, it was shelved in April as it was deemed not “commercially viable”.
Who has signed up so far?
News UK said alongside existing talent within the organisation, they will also be hiring “exceptional new talent” to join their schedule of prime time programming in the evenings.
Morgan, who began his career at The Sun, has recently been cleared by Ofcom after his comments about the Duchess of Sussex sparked 57,793 complaints to the regulator.
BREAKING: I’ve gone home. Great to be rejoining Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation after 28 years. The place I started my media career, with the boss who gave me my first big break. We’re going to have a lot of fun…. pic.twitter.com/g6xBWvgXzd
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) September 16, 2021
Piers Morgan’s new show will air on talkTV in the UK, FOX Nation for US audiences, and on Sky News Australia. In joining Murdoch’s conglomerate Morgan will also now have a column in The Sun and the New York Post, and the Murdoch-owned publishing house HarperCollins will publish a follow up to Morgan’s book, Wake Up.
Another familiar face from ITV has also joined the News UK roster.
Two years after his show was cancelled on ITV, Jeremy Kyle is now working with talkRADIO TV, having just started at Murdoch’s company on Monday.
“My team have a sweepstake going on that I will be sacked before 5pm.”
Watch Jeremy Kyle’s first show live on talkRADIO TV ► https://t.co/mm8DT9DZ46 pic.twitter.com/nMPhxr1Xsp
— talkRADIO (@talkRADIO) September 13, 2021
News UK’s Scott Taunton has also recently expanded his remit beyond radio and audio and was appointed CEO, News UK Broadcasting and is leading the talkTV launch.
How are people reacting?
Both Morgan and Murdoch are divisive figures, so it’s no surprise that opinion on the matter seems split.
People took to Twitter to share their reactions, and some are excited that Morgan will return to TV:
Congratulations Piers! Rupert is someone who is a big inspiration in the news biz. Been following both your careers and learned a lot from you both. Looking forward to this collab!
— 🥷🦅Austin Petersen 🇺🇲🥋 (@AP4Liberty) September 16, 2021
I think GMB lost the best presenter that I have had the pleasure to watch and anybody that brilliant as piers Morgan will never be that easy to come by because I think he is unique , good luck for the future piers . ❤️👏
— Debra (@Debra11661905) September 16, 2021
Wishing you all the very best, Piers! They’re bloody lucky to have you! @piersmorgan ❤️
— Rachel Sweeney (@RachelSweeneyNE) September 16, 2021
Others are not so keen on any of the Morgan-related news announced this week:
Live look of Piers Morgan joining Fox News pic.twitter.com/hQcYlokUUQ
— Freeman_85 (@85_freeman) September 16, 2021
What is this? GB News 2.0?
— Robespierre (@Robespi33645685) September 17, 2021
what fresh hell is this
— Matthew Kilgour (@MatthewKilgour) September 16, 2021
Some poked fun at the announcement including The Daily Show host Trevor Noah, who quipped that it’s a “big week for swollen testicles” in reference to Nicki Minaj’s controversial Covid vaccine claims:
Big week for swollen testicles https://t.co/uNObWMqrWB
— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) September 16, 2021
BREAKING: New co host announced – pic.twitter.com/Fns9N0XiDB
— Remmus (@The_Duke_No9) September 16, 2021
Just don’t ask @piersmorgan about Meghan Markle; there’s apparently some unresolved trauma🤔 pic.twitter.com/zALDAQyEKA
— Brian (@bmatcheski) September 16, 2021
We’re sure they took some notes on what not to do during a launch thanks to GB News. Either way, we’re very curious to see what News UK offers up in 2022 and we’ll be tuning in.
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