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Pivotal new TV channel

Pivot is the name of a TV channel aimed at 15-to-34-year-olds who want to change the world.

In the process, they could help Pivot change the television business.

Announced last December, the new venture was officially unveiled Wednesday at a news conference disclosing program and distribution details as well as its name and August 1 sign-on date. It initially will be available in more than 40 million homes.

Pivot is a division of Participant Media, founded in 2004 by entrepreneur-philanthropist Jeff Skoll, who helped mastermind eBay. Since then, Participant has produced more than 40 fiction and nonfiction films (with seven Academy Award wins and 35 nominations) that include "The Help," ''Charlie Wilson's War," ''Food, Inc.," ''An Inconvenient Truth" and Steven Spielberg's recent "Lincoln."

The company is dedicated "to creating lasting sustainable change through the power of storytelling," said Pivot president Evan Shapiro, "and now we're bringing that to TV.

"The mandate of Pivot is entertainment that inspires social change and our target is millennials, but other than that we are a general entertainment network with all types of content: drama, comedy, talk and documentaries," said Shapiro, who before joining Participant served as president of IFC and Sundance Channel, and executive-produced such documentaries and series as "This Film Is Not Yet Rated" and the Peabody Award-winning "Brick City" and "Portlandia."

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