Channel AKA

Channel AKA
Channel AKA
Channel AKA logo.png
Launched 2003
Owned by Mushroom TV Ltd
Audience share 0.0%
(May 2011, BARB)
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Broadcast area UK & Ireland
Formerly called Channel U
Sister channel(s) Greatest Hits TV
Starz TV
Sky Channel 370
Eurobird 1 12691V 27500 2/3
Internet television
TVCatchup Watch live (UK only)

Channel AKA (formerly Channel U) is a British digital satellite TV channel, owned by Mushroom TV Ltd,[1] available through Sky within the UK and Ireland on channel 370. It is a music channel, focusing on playing upcoming UK urban/hip-hop music and has helped the breakthrough for acts such as Tinchy Stryder, Tinie Tempah, Chipmunk and N-Dubz.


Starting point

Channel AKA is a significant outlet not only for established artists, but also for those who are just starting out. Its material "includes crude productions shot with handheld digital video cameras,"[2] and helps new musicians attract attention and build a fan base.[3] According to its website, "the aim of the channel was to highlight to the public, the raw and unsigned talent we have in the UK, and give them a platform from which they could perform,"[4] and it has been successful in this mission, as suggested by the production and popularity of such compilation CDs as Channel U: The Album.[5]

Many artists have expressed their loyalty to the channel in their lyrics; for example, in Lady Sovereign's "9 to 5", "Channel who? Oh Channel U, the ones who made me huge, like Katie Price's boobs!". Other artists to comment on Channel U include Kano, DJ Ironik, Lethal Bizzle, Sway, Remi Nicole, Wong, and Dizzee Rascal. Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip negatively mention Channel U in their song "Fixed".

In October 2005, the first annual Channel U Awards were held in London with live performances from its underground playlist.

Before he joined MTV to host the British version of Pimp My Ride, Tim Westwood had a show on Channel AKA, along with his other media activity. Following the success of the Westwood show the channel further developed its programming by licensing a lifestyle TV series, The Ballers Show, in 2006. The 30-minute show gave its audience the unique opportunity to see the real lives of footballers off the pitch and featured Premier League football stars including Jermain Defoe and Jermaine Pennant.[6]

2009 Rebrand

The parent company of Fizz TV and Channel U went into voluntary liquidation at the beginning of February, 2009, before being purchased by Mushroom TV. When purchasing the two channels, Mushroom TV agreed that Channel U and Fizz TV should be rebranded. The two channels were rebranded as Channel AKA and Starz TV on 16 March 2009.

AIMS: The aim of the channel is to provide fresh and exclusive entertainment to the viewers and to allow viewers to voice their opinions on videos through the power of voting. Not only does this give the viewer control over their viewing, it also allows artists to see how people are reacting to their music. AKA (formerly Channel U) highlights to the public, the raw and unsigned talent we have in the UK, and it has been successful in this mission, as suggested by the production and popularity of such compilation CDs as Channel U: The Album.


  • Streetz Grime & Life
  • Free Video Request Show
  • Strictly...
  • UK Tings
  • UK Gold
  • The AKA Chart Show
  • The Raviology Show


In June 2005, the channel was fined £18,000 by Ofcom for a number of offences, including the broadcasting of inappropriate material, using premium rate telephone services in programmes, and failing to ensure a clear distinction between programmes and advertisements.[7]



  1. ^ Licence Details for Channel U
  2. ^ Frere-Jones, Sasha. 21 March 2005. "True Grime: A Genre's Magic Moment." The New Yorker. Accessed 14 March 2008.
  3. ^ Leon B. 03 September 2007. "Channel U: The Future Of UK Urban Music?" The Scene Magazine. Accessed 14 March 2008.
  4. ^ "The Channel U Shop: About." Accessed 14 March 2008.
  5. ^ Various artists, Channel U: The Album | | Arts
  6. ^
  7. ^

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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