Excellent idea Polly

Poll after poll shows how greatly the BBC is valued. When 20% of respondents say they resent the licence fee as they never use BBC ­services, Professor Barwise says they lie: in fact only about 1% don\’t watch or listen to the BBC. He wants to conduct an ­experiment: offer these deniers a full licence rebate in exchange for turning off all access to BBC services and see how long it is before they hand back the cash to be reconnected.

Yup, bring it on. Exactly what should indeed happen. Abolish the tax and turn the BBC into a subscription service.

Although I fear that\’s not quite what you actually mean.

11 thoughts on “Excellent idea Polly”

  1. From memory, the BBC conducted a poll on subscription and the result was 60% would not subscribe to BBC services.

  2. Isn’t the licence tied to the ability to watch TV? Then why deny access to everything in this thought experiment? It’s a bit like seeing if someone can survive on a vegetarian diet by denying them access to their local supermarket.

  3. We need to separate “Public Service Broadcasting” from the BBC- there is no necessary connection. Anyone who believes that one organisation can be sufficiently self critical not to promote its own view (even unconciously) is extremely naive- and to suggest that any organisation is composed of people without an idea in their heads is ridiculous- how could they organise themselves?
    May I suggest that Channels for non subscription non advertising broadcasting be auctioned to the lowest bidder (no one operator to have more than two channels concurrently in any one media) and paid directly from the treasury. We then get public service broadcasting at minimum cost and a diversity of views.
    The BBC would of course be eligible to tender- and would also be able to run subscription channels and advertising channels separately if it so desired.
    Since the BBC has been in public ownership for decades, it should be privatised- how about giving the shares to license holders?

  4. Effing and Blinding

    Funny how the BBC has been lathering itself with excitement over that nasty Microsoft having to unbundle its products on anti-competition grounds.

    But the irony of the fact a TV must be bundled with the BBC product (you can’t choose a TV that isn’t) seems to be lost on them.

  5. “For years Rupert Murdoch has poured his anti-BBC poison into the ears of his readers, viewers, and the politicians who pay him such assiduous court. He always wanted the BBC reduced to copy the American Public Broadcasting ­System subscription service, ­offering only the worthy programming no ­commercial broadcaster wants”

    Hang on a minute… isn’t the stated defence for the BBC by various Guardian types that you have to have a license fee for it to do all the things that the evil private sector won’t?

    What Polly seems to be saying is that the US has it right.

  6. “Deniers”? Deniers of what? Does she mean people who deny they watch the BBC, or people who deny themselves the BBC?

    It would be a very good experiment, whichever she means. Many who don’t watch it much, but watch it a bit because it’s free, would take the money and be happy without it. No doubt many people now use the BBC website “because it’s there”. Few would pay a penny for it.

  7. “The BBC is in the same category as the NHS:”

    That pretty well defeats Polly’s arguement.

  8. I don’t, at the moment, have a television set (this doesn’t prevent endless harassment from the TV Licensing scumbags, of course).

    I have no plans to buy a television set until this disgusting imposition is repealed.

    The BBC are cluttering up the electromagnetic spectrum with their valueless twaddle, and what I would like to know is by what right they do this? Why isn’t Brian’s Broadcasting Corporation equally free to do this?

    (OK, OK, I know the reason, but what is the right?)

  9. May I suggest that Channels for non subscription non advertising broadcasting be auctioned to the lowest bidder

    Lowest bidder?? If you’re not going for the highest bidder (to make money, the EM equivalent of LVT), which would favour the commercial channels, then the government has to judge on “quality”. Quite how the government will judge this is a debatable issue. Anyway, this is (or should be) an academic issue, because…

    We then get public service broadcasting at minimum cost and a diversity of views.

    We already have this. It’s called YouTube. The idea of channels is obsolete.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *