The Young Turks’ two-hour nightly online show has pulled in more than 1.8 billion views and currently has more than 2 million subscribers.
According to its YouTube page, The Young Turks were the “first original talk show on Sirius satellite radio and the first live, daily webcast on the internet. But that is not the revolution.”
“We are a rare show that combines all the news that people care about in one place. We are not afraid to talk about politics and entertainment and sports and pop culture. But that is not the revolution either. The real revolution is in daring to be honest with people. We don’t patronize our viewers or lie to them. We have real conversations and deliver the news honestly.”
Founder and host Cenk Uygur recently told the Independent that other journalists don’t like him, and he’s okay with that.
“If you mention The Young Turks to traditional media in Washington,” Uygur said, “it rankles them — they get visibly agitated [and say], ‘Oh, purr-lease! We are legitimate!’ Is that because they do Pentagon press releases better than anyone else?”
Uygur also believes that those “legitimate” news sources have become corrupted, especially Fox News.
“Fox News say they are fair and it’s so preposterous that it’s over-the-top Orwellian. It’s almost an effort to get out to stop believing everyone,” he said, adding that Fox had “poisoned the well” for all TV news.
“It’s a brilliant move by Roger Ailes and Rupert Murdoch, who have no intention of being fair and balanced ever.”
The Young Turks host had a deal that fell through with MSNBC in 2011, but Uygur says he’s too nonconformist for the network that he sees as a mouthpiece for the Democratic Party.
“I literally got a speech from the head of MSNBC in his office saying outsiders are cool, they wear leather jackets and ride motorcycles, but we are insiders, we are the establishment and you have to act like it. It was like out of a movie. I couldn’t quite believe he was saying it and I thought ‘no way am I doing that.’”
He added that turning down “over $1 million” got him his “credibility.”
“We are the non-robot channel,” Uygur concluded. “What do people want, fake or real?”