Channel 4 to Launch Digital Radio Station
Channel 4 are supposedly considering launching a digital radio station, that will be in "direct competition" with Radio 4. Umm, yeah, right.
Running a radio station might not be such a bad idea, and the author of the piece is right in thinking that struggling Oneword would be the channel to morph into such a station - it's on Digital One and so would get a national footprint at a stroke.
But compete with Radio 4? They could run phone-ins about last night's Wife Swap or whatever, but that's not really the same. Indeed the phone-in is the only really affordable way that they could programme such a station. It's not going to be packed with original drama, unless they can find an outstandingly cheap source somewhere, and it's not going to have much in the way of documentaries. Even comedy, to which C4 would have access, would be tricky. I guess the audio of Father Ted would work on radio in the same way it did for the likes of Yes Minister and Dad's Army. Let's be honest, this is not a Radio 4 competitor.
The main problem with a phone-in format, is that you need a critical mass of listeners to start getting decent calls coming through. One to watch with interest nonetheless.