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Since the Second World War, when the BBC provided news and comfort for a nation in great peril, it has played a central role in British life and culture. That is why any proposals for radical change at the Corporation, or any sign that its standards might be slipping, deeply disturb its loyal admirers.

Indyplus video: BBC vs ITV

Kylie Minogue's arrival as a judge for The Voice saw the BBC show thrash ITV's Splash

Kylie Minogue pulls in extra 2m viewers for The Voice

BBC show thrashes ITV's Splash, where viewing figures dived

Simon Fuller, creator of the Pop Idol format

Pop Idol's Simon Fuller: X Factor, The Voice and Britain's Got Talent are killing talent shows

Fuller warned too many copycat shows are killing the talent show genre

Could it be Broadchurch's night? David Tennant and Olivia Colman are both up for awards with the ITV show nominated for Best Drama

National Television Awards 2014: Benedict Cumberbatch and David Tennant shortlisted

A new TV Detective category has been added after a flood of hit crime dramas

The View from the Train: Cities & Other Landscapes By Patrick Keiller: book review - A delightful journey in search of Britain's urban hinterlands

Arthur Rimbaud's shimmering poetry collection, Illuminations, was partly inspired by his visit to London in 1872. Brocaded with a dizzy-making imagery of subways, viaducts, raised canals, bridges and steam engines, the poems are thrillingly metropolitan. Accompanied by his lover Paul Verlaine, Rimbaud noted down all he heard and saw. In some ways, Illuminations can be read as a poetic gloss on Karl Marx’s Das Kapital: the London masses as seen by the 19th-century French poet are alienated by “economic horrors” and “feel no need to know one another”.

Thai anti-government protesters gather in front of a registration venue for election candidates at the Thai-Japan Stadium in Bangkok,

Thai protesters anti-government surround Bangkok sports stadium to try to block election sign-up

Anti-government protesters determined to unseat Thailand's prime minister surrounded a Bangkok sports stadium on Monday in an unsuccessful attempt to block political parties from registering for February elections.

Look who's back: Simon Cowell has new plans for The X Factor 2014

Simon Cowell announces plans to shake-up rules on The X Factor

The judge announced a change to the format as ratings continue to slum

Bryan Cranston as Walter White, in the acclaimed series 'Breaking Bad'

Breaking Bad beaten by EastEnders as 2013's most searched for TV show

The drama was the only US series to make Google's most searched list

Sam Bailey celebrates hearing of her win with mentor Sharon Osbourne

X Factor 2013: Ratings for Sam Bailey's final lowest since 2005

Strictly Come Dancing beat The X Factor final in this weekend's ratings battle

Luke Friend has placed third in the tenth series of The X Factor

X Factor 2013 final: Luke Friend comes third and ratings hit record low

Sam Bailey and Nicholas McDonald will battle to win the tenth series tonight

Lily Allen is back at number one with her cover of Keane's 'Somewhere Only We Know'

Lily Allen returns to number one with John Lewis advert song 'Somewhere Only We Know'

The singer is at number one with her cover of 'Somewhere Only We Know'

Suited and booted: Dermot O'Leary will fill in for Philip Schofield on 'This Morning' in the New Year

Dermot O'Leary to present ITV's This Morning

The TV host will fill in for Philip Schofield on the daytime show in January

Elton John will duet with Gary Barlow on the final show of The X Factor

X Factor 2013: Elton John will join One Direction, Katy Perry and The Killers for the final show of the series

The star will duet with Gary Barlow despite attacking the show in the past

TV mogul Simon Cowell will not let 'The X Factor' die without a fight

X Factor and Britain's Got Talent renewed until 2016

The talent shows are here to stay for the next three years...

ITV plans to turn 'Rising Star' from Keshet International into its next big hit

The next big hit? ITV targets Israel's Rising Star talent show, tipped as X Factor with 'technological twist'

Judges and viewers vote as the performer begins to sing and images of voters taken from their Facebook pages appear live on giant LED screen facing the performer

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Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...