Channel 4 to shut down E4 on election day to get young people voting

Channel 4 is switching off its digital channel E4 on 7 May to encourage viewers to get out and vote in the general election.

When viewers tune in to E4 they will see Darren (pictured) in the E4 control room, who is in charge of switching the channel on and off. At 7am when polling stations open, Darren will turn E4 off.

Throughout the day viewers will see Darren in the control room in place of the usual schedule, commercials and promos.

E4 is the top digital channel for 16- 34 year old viewers, attracting 5.2 per cent share of the young demographic this year, higher than both BBC2 and Channel 5.

Dan Brooke, Channel 4’s chief marketing and communications officer said: "Less than half of under-25s voted at the last election so we’ve engaged the most powerful weapon that we have at our disposal to try and boost that number – switching off their favourite TV channel for the day!"   

The E4 shutdown is one of several initiatives designed by Channel 4 to motivate young people to engage with the election. Earlier this month they launched ‘X’ - a new campaign aiming to boost the number of under-25s voting. ‘X’ shows young people how to register to vote online and will remind them to turn out on polling day through a series of free personalised SMS messages. 

Next week Channel 4 will stream the first ever Youth Leaders’ Debate in association with Shout Out UK. 

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