The BBC's 24-hour rolling news channel in the UK, available free-to-air to cable, digital satellite and digital terrestrial viewes.

Launched on November 9, 1997, News 24 was supposed to be in direct competition with Sky News - and managed to replace it in many cable TV packages, since operators didn't have to pay so much to carry it.

Initially, it was dogged with problems (wrong VTs being shown, incorrect captions, presenters not being ready, and so on), and a bit of controversy surrounded the informalness - the presenters didn't wear jackets!

Things worked a bit better over time, and a minor relaunch in 1999 to match the new BBC News corporate identity made things look more professional.

The schedule normally revolves around main headlines every fifteen minutes, weather at 27 and 57 minutes past the hour, and business news at about 18 minutes past the hour. Features are occasionally shown at half past the hour, such as sports roundups, World Business Report, Asia Today, etc.

Overnight (from about 0200 until 0600, when Breakfast starts), most news output is shared with BBC World. World News is shown for the first half hour, followed by a summary of world and domestic news, and then a feature is often shown.

News 24 can be found on Sky Digital channel 507 and On Digital channel 11. Cable operators vary.

BBC News 24 is, as mentioned above, a 24/7 news channel on British cable, satellite and digital terrestrial television. It generally attracts those who consider the Carlton/Granada run ITV News Channel too tacky (i.e everyone), consider Sky News too biased and consider CNN to be American crap. I would liken its tone to The Independent-overly serious and very, very unbiased.

The channel started in 1998 with what I must say is one of the best presentation packages I have seen, heavy drumbeat music with a variety of flags (some obviously world flags, some other generic ones) flapping in the wind. Considering what was being reported daily on the channel though (suicide bombings almost daily, terrorism, murders et al) the laid back style wasn't very suitable for the channel.

Later on, the BBC's new "red out the wazoo" theme swept across the company's news operations, and with it BBC News 24 changed. It gained a slightly different jingle to the regular BBC news bulletins (the News 24 version has many Tesla coil-esque banging noises, higher pitched bleeps and other indescribably weird noises that somehow sound incredibly cool when put on a news channel) and (a spiffy 90 second countdown sequence, with even more bleepy things. If you wish to see it, visit with RealOne. Sadly, the graphics in that video are now gone, and have been replaced by a video with, among other things, skateboarders and clocks.

News 24 has recently been criticised by the government for being too much like Sky News. How you differentiate two news channels which have the same stories is a mystery, as was frequently said in the press.
Update: Gone is the subdued, hevay tone and in is a channel trying to be Sky News, with incredibly similar presentation. For once, CNN looks better-at least it didn't act as irresponsibly as to flash NEW YORK THREAT in large letters after they got wind of an unconfirmed report.

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