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BBC Telly Tax petition given new Parliament debate date

TRT
Silver badge

I have no issues with the Telly Tax

I do have issues with employing Crapita to police it.

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Re: I have no issues with the Telly Tax

Well you should, because Capita is an awful company and not fit to run anything.

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TRT
Silver badge

Re: I have no issues with the Telly Tax

Which is my issue.

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If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Just try watching the sh!te on the other channels, peppered by adverts, and you'll soon turn back to the Beeb.

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

I'm yet to figure this one out : What if I dont watch the BBC, but I'm happy with Sky, CH4 and ITV. I'll say it again : I dont watch the BBC. Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Worth the licence fee for Radio 4 alone

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Bronze badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

I don't watch the BBC or any of the other channels, mostly YouTube, and I still get pestered by them.

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"Just try watching the sh!te on the other channels, peppered by adverts, and you'll soon turn back to the Beeb."

If only that were still true, DailyLlama. Unfortunately, all BBC programmes are seperated buy long avertising cycles, on both TV and radio. On radio, news programmes are also routinely interrupted, sometimes every 8 ot 10 minutes, for a short advertising slot. The ads themselves are usually for future BBC programs, or just promoting the BBC itsellf. Just adverts for themselves, no more.

It is quite tragic for the Beeb. They have killed their own biggest advantage over commercial rivals, and shown how little they think of viewers and listeners by targeting them with anoying advertorial that isn't even needed for commercial survival.

And now here is the soft music, and that honeyed voice intones, for the 11th time, about that forthcoming Radio 4 programme that you have no interest in...

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

It's worth it for This Week alone. Radio 4 makes many intelligent people want to throw their radio into the garden.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Okay, I'll bite... because you don't have a specially constructed television that can only receive commercial channels and is physically incapable of receiving BBC channels. And neither does anyone else. So while your principals are whiter than the driven snow, others are less so.

Secondly, the presence of the BBC raises the standards of the other channels. Without it there would be a rush to the bottom with 3 minutes of programming per 30 minutes of adverts. Without the Beeb you wouldn't want to be watching commercial only.

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

No adverts seems to be the only justification for me having to pay an unfair tax.

I don't watch the BBC because they don't make tv aimed at me.

There are proven non advertising based channels out there like Netflix and hbo. You need a TV to watch them but owning a TV in the UK is equated to needing a licence/watching the beeb... And don't get me started on how much you get hassled when you don't have a TV atall... It's inconceivable to them that lots of us just ditched the whole damn lot over this ridiculous tax!

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Silver badge

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

Same reason that some of your taxes fund the roads even if you don't drive, the health service even when you're not poor and education though you're not a child.

This isn't a subscription service, it's a tax to fund a public broadcaster.

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Mushroom

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"I dont watch the BBC. Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?"

I don't have kids. Why should I pay to educate your mongrels

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Because part of the fees go to those channels as well. Well Channel 4 anyway.

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"Secondly, the presence of the BBC raises the standards of the other channels. "

@AC how does that work ?

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Silver badge

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

"Same reason that some of your taxes..."

Well, it's all priorities really isn't it. Me, I don't think Antiques Road Trip or Homes under the Hammer are public spending priorities. I'm gonna go out on a limb here : Roads, health, and education are. The state should not be providing entertainment. Private companies can do that just fine.

Edit : And irony of ironies, stuff that the state should provide, like Trains, Water, Power etc. are provided by private companies!

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

I coughed the 147 quid 2 days ago - I sure as hell would not choose to fund the BBC if I had any real choice.

What it currently produces and the way it is run means I would be happy to see it crawl into a corner an die.

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

I find it bizarre that people are willing to pay Sky a minimum of £25 a month (and still have to watch adverts) yet complain about paying the BBC less than half that. I also have a hard job of believing that across the TV channels, iplayer, the website and radio there isn't some content to suit absolutely everyone.

It wouldn't just be a case of scrapping the license fee, allowing advertising and everything else continuing as now. There's only so much adversiting money to go round and the BBC would be likely to hoover up most of it. ITV and C4's revenues would plummet with a corresponding drop in quality of programming. Several of the smaller channels would likely disappear altogether.

Those campaigning to scrap the license fee should be careful what they wish for. Whilst the BBC is far from perfect the entire entertainment landscape of this country would be worse off without it.

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Silver badge

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

"taxes fund the roads"

You don't have to use roads to significantly benefit from them. Others watching the BBC is no benefit to me, actually the opposite. The country would benefit from not being exposed to the lefty biased and low quality crap the BBC news service spews.

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Bronze badge

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

Hi,

If one were to ignore the BBC channels, and examine the Freeview offerings, then you will soon realise that BBC offers very good value for money.

There are very few freeview channels that i even watch (which have no government financial input BBC, CH4) - in fact 3, to record 3 programs, where each lasts 1 hour including adverts.

Freeview content, albeit free, is of a much lower standard than the BBC.

I am single, (was married) no kids, live alone, and have minimal impact on the services, yet i don't moan about paying for all the services i don't use.

From the comments from some people on here, i can see how people will evolve into becoming Harry Enfield's "Old Gits"......... :O)

Regards,

Shadmeister.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

"lefty biased"

Left ------ BBC ----- Right

Anyone with half a brain can work it out.

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Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

Anyone with half a brain can work it out

Unfortunately, the Daily Heil types who think that the BBC is a hotbed of Marxism are lucky if they have 5% of a brain, never mind 50%.

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"There are proven non advertising based channels out there like Netflix and hbo. You need a TV to watch them but owning a TV in the UK is equated to needing a licence/watching the beeb."

No you don't...

You need a license to receive broadcast TV (Cable/Sattellite/Terrestrial) or iPlayer streaming.

Other streaming services do not need a TVL.

I have spent several years ignoring the TVL letters sent to me on a ridiculously frequent basis...

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Silver badge

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

"Freeview content, albeit free, is of a much lower standard than the BBC"

Interesting comment. Have you any idea how many Freeview channels are owned or the material sourced from the BBC?

Add the Sky and the "Wallet Opening Channels" of all types and that's basically it ...

When UK Gold was launched I thought is was such an incredible marketing strategy to endlessly repeat repeats ... then they managed to completely trump the idea with Dave ... then incredibly Dave+1, Dave JaVu and probably other such channels as "Dave+365", "Isn't there something on Dave?" and "Dara Never Grows Old on Dave"

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Secondly, the presence of the BBC raises the standards of the other channels. Without it there would be a rush to the bottom with 3 minutes of programming per 30 minutes of adverts.

The 'rush to the bottom' was started by the BBC when it began chasing ratings after ITV launched in the 50's

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

I have spent several years ignoring the TVL letters sent to me on a ridiculously frequent basis...

If the frequency starts to bother you, just answer one. I now get just one email every four years which I think simply exists for people to perjure themselves should they get caught out.

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Bronze badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

no chance of me ever watching the BBC, its for brain dead people, every program is mundane, if they have anything intelligent on it, its all dumbed down for 11 year olds who watch eastenders to understand it, i have'nt watched nothing on the BBC for 20 years, and it is all deleted off of my freeview channel list

should'nt need to pay for something you care nothing about

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"rush to the bottom with 3 minutes of programming per 30 minutes of adverts."

This is incorrect, actually. The ratio of ads to programming is regulated. It was increased for Sky when it launched to give it a chance of survival. A few years ago, the other providers complained and were given the same increased level (Sky's should have been decreased to match in my view, not the other way around). It's not done hourly but over a day, which is why you see more during peak evening times and fewer late at night. But the disappearance of the licence alone will not cause an increase in ad frequency.

And oddly, as others have mentioned, the BBC almost matches commercial radio and TV in terms of ads promoting itself anyway. Radio 2 is unbearable for more than a couple of hours for me, for this very reason.

It's definitely time for a serious discussion on the future of TVL.

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"I find it bizarre that people are willing to pay Sky a minimum of £25 a month (and still have to watch adverts) yet complain about paying the BBC less than half that. I also have a hard job of believing that across the TV channels, iplayer, the website and radio there isn't some content to suit absolutely everyone.

It wouldn't just be a case of scrapping the license fee, allowing advertising and everything else continuing as now. There's only so much adversiting money to go round and the BBC would be likely to hoover up most of it. ITV and C4's revenues would plummet with a corresponding drop in quality of programming. Several of the smaller channels would likely disappear altogether.

Those campaigning to scrap the license fee should be careful what they wish for. Whilst the BBC is far from perfect the entire entertainment landscape of this country would be worse off without it."

Here's the thing though - with something like Sky you can record future episodes and watch them, at your leisure, skipping the adverts.

I can series link so they all download in future.

I can watch almost all of their offerings on a number of device types - not just for a few days or weeks after they broadcast and once I've recorded something to my box, I can actually (should I so desire) keep it ad infinitum.

Now perhaps I am being unfair to the iPlayer and it can do all of that but I rarely use it.

I love the comedy half hour on R4 between 6:30 and 7:00pm - not everything (some of it is utter shite, to be honest, but most of it is worthy of a chuckle) but you try and find something over about 30 days old on average. Nope. Not usually happening.

You're paying Sky or Virgin (or if you prefer a LOT less to Amazon or Netflix) for a much wider choice of channels than you get from the BBC, even taking radio into account. And some of the quality on them is truly outstanding (Halt and Catch Fire, on Amazon or Rick and Morty on NetFlix anyone? Just two outstanding examples)

And let's not forget that, like all of the other channels, the BBC do have some utter race-to-the-bottom crap on there as well.

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"No you don't..."

Oh really?

"A TV Licence is a legal permission to install or use television receiving equipment to watch or record television programmes as they are being shown on TV or live on an online TV service, and to download or watch BBC programmes on demand, including catch up TV, on BBC iPlayer. This could be on any device, including TVs, desktop computers, laptops, mobile phones, tablets, games consoles, digital boxes, DVD, Blu-ray and VHS recorders. This applies regardless of which television channels a person receives or how those channels are received. The licence fee is not a payment for BBC services (or any other television service), although licence fee revenue is used to fund the BBC."

Taken from: https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/about/foi-legal-framework-AB16

It then continues:

"It is an offence to watch or record television programmes as they are being shown on any channel and on any broadcast platform (terrestrial, satellite, cable and the internet) or download or watch BBC programmes on demand, including catch up TV, on BBC iPlayer without a valid TV Licence."

I am pretty sure they updated this to catch people in your exact case.

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TVU
Bronze badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"Just try watching the sh!te on the other channels, peppered by adverts, and you'll soon turn back to the Beeb"

Not only that, those same pro-Murdoch, anti-BBC whingers will almost certainly whinge even more when they find out that the alternative to the TV licence is a broadcasting charge levied on every property so as to stamp out licence fee evasion.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

So we can.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Why not just have an electronic devices tax?

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

I watch on demand only, the only reason I don't mind the TV tax is that I really like Radio 2 and 4 and listen to both daily.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Because soon Sky, Ch4, ITV etc. will become pay per view and it will be more than 50p per day per channel.

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

no chance of me ever watching the BBC, its for brain dead people, every program is mundane, if they have anything intelligent on it, its all dumbed down for 11 year olds who watch eastenders to understand it, i have'nt watched nothing on the BBC for 20 years, and it is all deleted off of my freeview channel list

should'nt need to pay for something you care nothing about

Be careful what you wish for: if we ask gov to abolish the Licence Fee they'll just add the sum to income tax.

TV-free for 20+ years here too and neither do I pay, if El Reg mucks this arrangement up I'll be annoyed!

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

You should pay the tax for the same reason that you pay other similar taxes.

The BBC is one supplier of TV services among many, but it is one that the government has chosen to make everyone pay for whether they want to or not.

In the same way, you cannot buy the Guardian without paying the newspaper tax, the proceeds of which fund the public service newspaper, the Daily Telegraph.

You cannot shop at Tesco without paying the supermarket access fee, and having a license ready to display if challenged, and of course the proceeds of this go to the public service supermarket Waitrose.

It is universal in British life that there is one service provider among many, and that to use any of the services, you have to have a license for which you pay a fee, and this fee goes to one of the providers.

Take cars, for instance. You pay a road tax, you have to, in order to be permitted to drive. Well, the proceeds go to the public service car manufacturer, Rover, or rather, nowadays, to its successor and purchaser BMW.

Why do you think broadcasting should be any different? Its the same in all other areas of life. You cannot even buy an adult men's magazine without paying a tax to have the right to read magazines, and the fees are paid to the public service men's magazine, I forget its title now, not being an aficionado of these publications....

Now people sometimes object. They say, why should I pay Waitrose for the privilege of being allowed to shop at Tesco?

Let me explain to you all once again. Waitrose is a public service supermarket. its just like the roads or the national health service or defence or the police. And its excellent value too. Just the Waitrose olive oil alone is worth the supermarket license fee. And competition from a public service supermarket makes Tesco so much better. Let me tell you, without it, you would not want to shop at Tesco who would be free to supply nothing but mouldy and past sell date goods.

You wouldn't want that, would you?

I hope this makes it all clear. it is very basic, so basic that people sometimes forget and think that there is something special about the way we fund the BBC. Well, let me tell you, there is not. it is absolutely normal and standard and permitted by the EU, so it must be all right.

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Here's the thing though - with something like Sky you can record future episodes and watch them, at your leisure, skipping the adverts.

I can series link so they all download in future.

...

and once I've recorded something to my box, I can actually (should I so desire) keep it ad infinitum.

Wow! You pay Sky £25+ pcm just for that - Humax Freeview PVR's have been able to do that since circa 2003...

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Silver badge

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

"

Same reason that some of your taxes fund the roads even if you don't drive, the health service even when you're not poor and education though you're not a child.

"

The HUGE difference being that the roads, education and health benefit everyone either directly or indirectly - and furthermore are necessary in our society, while a TV channel benefits only those who choose to watch it and society would function perfectly well without it.

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"

I find it bizarre that people are willing to pay Sky a minimum of £25 a month (and still have to watch adverts) yet complain about paying the BBC less than half that.

"

If people spent £250 a week on a weekly shop at Waitrose, would you similarly see nothing wrong with demanding that they also give £100 a week to Sainsbury even though they never enter the place?

Makes about as much sense.

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Thumb Up

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Brilliant ! But watch out, the Ministry of Food will pop round to invalidate your Ration Book...

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

I do not pay the TV tax, at least someone who prints it for it is, well done the Register.

I watch Netflix, some stuff on you Tube and I can still legaly watch catch up from the commercial channels.

so plenty for me to watch without paying for the BEEB.

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Thumb Up

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

Another difference is that the essentials of education and healthcare can involve significant outlay at the times when they are needed, so a state scheme funded by taxation smooths the peaks and trough and makes it affordable for everyone all the time.

In contrast, PAYG TV is completely realistic because it's affordable. I don't like Murdoch, but at least you can choose whether to subscribe to watch his rubbish and he doesn't come banging on your door or send you to jail if you don't pay.

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Bronze badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"Be careful what you wish for: if we ask gov to abolish the Licence Fee they'll just add the sum to income tax."

that won't happen, the TV channels pay OFCOM to use the freeview spectrum out of the money earned from advertising

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

You speak for yourself not me. My eyeballs, my choice.

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Bronze badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"I find it bizarre that people are willing to pay Sky a minimum of £25 a month (and still have to watch adverts) yet complain about paying the BBC less than half that."

SKY has stuff to watch after spending £1bn a year, with sky atlantic etc

BBC has £4.3bn and has nothing to watch, which is better off being spent in the shops, and fixing the NHS

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Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Who are you to tell me what is best for me? You (and I) may find people paying Sky a strange, even irrational choice but the thing is it is their choice.

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

If people spent £250 a week on a weekly shop at Waitrose, would you similarly see nothing wrong with demanding that they also give £100 a week to Sainsbury even though they never enter the place?

Well if Waitrose stocked all of Sainbury's lines as well as their own, for which I only paid a handling charge within my £250 weekly bill in the expectation that I was also giving £100 a week to Sainsbury's then I wouldn't see anything wrong.

Remember Sky doesn't pay the BBC, it is required to carry and distribute (ie. 'handle') the BBC (and the other Freeview?) channels on it's infrastructure to all of it's UK subscribers...

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Silver badge

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

"There's only so much adversiting money to go round and the BBC would be likely to hoover up most of it."

And that's already a problem hence the result of the lobbying by the commercial broadcasters to get the limits on advert breaks changed from a maximum length and maximum minutes per hour, to the same totals averaged out of 24 hours. This has lead to breaks of 5 minutes or more during peak times and sometimes no actual ads at all beyond midnight, just short trailer breaks. Bear in mind that this means that shows that used to fit in an hour with two or three three minute breaks now have at least three five minute breaks. New shows may be written that way, but older shows get cut to ribbons. And don't get me started on the channels to schedule ad breaks by computer and have been known to put an ad break in the middle of an actors sentence!

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Silver badge

Re: Please someone tell me why I should pay the license fee?

"the lefty biased and low quality crap the BBC news service spews."

....aaaaand cue the complainant claiming the BBC if biased to the right :-)

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