I like the BBC. Ninety percent of my TV viewing is on, what I call, Public Service Broadcasting. How much is the TV Licence Fee? I think it’s worth every penny.
A recent news item is bringing it into question, whether or not those who do not pay the annual licence should be imprisoned. Listening to pundits from both sides suggest that very few people actually serve jail time for the offence and mostly they are fined; it is the non payment of these fines which leads to their loss of freedom.
An awful lot of our licence fee seems to be directed in the wrong places. It was revealed last year that news presenters who wore trousers earned considerably more than those who wore skirts. They were not judged by their ability, rather by their gender. I can see an argument for abolishing the licence fee if it is channeled this way. More quality dramas, documentaries and less banal quiz shows (‘First And Last’ are Pointless!).
This is what I found on the BBC website and TV Licensing: The bulk of the BBC’s £5 billion funding comes from the licence fee. It also raises around £1.3 billion from selling it’s programmes for broadcast overseas. Over 90% of the licence fee is spent on BBC TV channels, radio stations, BBC iPlayer and online services.
I want to sell the BBC to you. I don’t consider myself old, but I’m not that young either. I don’t fall into the demographic that encompasses live streaming on to my phone or iPad. I need a proper TV screen, okay 60″ might be a little large but I am a bit short-sighted. I don’t wear glasses to view but I might have one in my hand sometimes with an alcoholic beverage. From time to time we need to remind ourselves just how good the content is, such as: ‘Call the Midwife’; ‘Silent Witness’; ‘Line of Duty’; ‘New Tricks’; ‘Waking the Dead’; ‘Miranda’; ‘Gavin & Stacey’; ‘Question Time’and’Newsnight’ I could go on, all these programmes evoke some emotion. We either want to throw our shoes at the TV or we laugh until we cry. Why would we not love that and want to pay for it?
We pay to go to the cinema and the theatre and that’s over in two and a half hours.
I will watch live TV when it’s the Beeb because I’m not bombarded by advertising throughout dramas, comedies and documentaries. I am marginally irritated by programme links but I know that I’m not going to be pestered into buying a family holiday in a Virgin Airways sale. I enjoy dramas, complete and uninterrupted. I don’t want to delay the suspense with toothpaste! How effective is commercial advertising? Do I remember the advertisement that interrupted the current ITV drama ‘White House Farm’? Will I remember it shopping for mouthwash, or will I look at the price of the product and the pennies in my purse?
In 1969 I may have been swayed by the promises of Persil versus Bold, but it’s just there, background noise; an excuse to make a cup of tea.
I personally do not feel that we get influenced by advertising on commercial TV stations. I think we need something new.