Independent readers discuss whether BBC TV licence is good value for money as fee set to rise

By RockedBuzz 12 Min Read

The Independent Debate

The worth of a full TV license will rise in 2024, however not everybody feels they’re getting bang for their buck.

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Independent readers are divided on whether the BBC’s license fee is value for money.

It comes after the Government introduced a rise within the cost for 2024.

Those who watch or report broadcast tv applications will need to have a tv license both by buy or given free to those that obtain pension credit score and are 75 years of age or older.

It pays for BBC companies together with TV, radio, the BBC web site, podcasts, iPlayer and apps and is assured till not less than the top of 2027 by the BBC’s royal constitution, which units out its funding and its function.

The fee had been frozen at £159 for the previous two years and on Thursday the Government introduced that it’s going to now rise by £10.50 to £169.50 from April 2024.

This is a decreased quantity, nevertheless, as the deliberate enhance was round £15 subsequent 12 months.

We requested you the way you felt in regards to the TV licence. While some readers believed the fee was “good value”, many additionally agreed that the broadcaster was a “shell” of itself.

The options to make the output extra engaging included an emphasis on the impartiality of the broadcaster and the independence of the Government; preserving the value freeze in place; introducing commercials; and providing a pay-per-view service.

Here’s what Independent readers had to say:

‘It’s nonetheless a treasure’

Some persons are saying that the BBC is now a shell of what it used to be. I agree however I might say that he is compelled into this place, largely by the federal government.

The Government has decreased funding and elevated the burden on the BBC. eg the worldwide service that used to be funded from navy budgets, among the content material is now essentially the most visited web site on the earth (with pages translated into native languages). Local radio is being destroyed in the meanwhile. The free TV licenses for pensioners… I might go on. All these, and extra, decreased its value and attain as a dependable public service broadcaster. All this is outstanding regardless of the appointment of supportive leaders, handpicked by the federal government, to the BBC. Therefore, it is changing into increasingly tough to keep the identical customary of service.

Protecting the BBC, even in its present suppressed type, it stays a treasure and, most significantly, has retained its trusted value globally. It has all the time been, and nonetheless is, on the forefront of setting technical and manufacturing requirements that the remaining attempt to comply with. Whether these strengths are in issues like broadcast method and requirements (e.g. UHD broadcasting, HDR, digital radio, on-line supply, and so forth.), educating supplies and supply through the covid epidemic and certainly its massive syndicated applications well-known everywhere in the world. The BBC has a major affect on our international standing and the sharing of our cultures and values. It gives public companies and content material that non-public sector broadcasters would by no means contact with a pole.

I might argue that the TV license needs to be discontinued. Instead, the funding ought to come from an applicable stage of common taxation which might even have the impact of restoring service to those that can not at the moment afford pay TV.


‘Definitely good value’

Three quid per week is undoubtedly good value. Compare what you pay for Netflix or Prime and what you get for your money from them and what you get from the Babe.


‘I’d reasonably see advertisements’

No authorities ought to determine the way forward for the BBC, and no authorities ought to give you the chance to use it as propaganda. Somehow they handle to get all the things mistaken as a result of they’re endlessly trying over their shoulder.

If full independence is not written into their constitution and our political structure, there is no method ahead for them. I hate to say this however I’d reasonably see advertisements than give them to any authorities.


‘Put to sleep humanly’

Go again 20 years and I might be very happy to pay it. Today, nevertheless, the BBC has grow to be a second-rate set of channels.

Sports are disappearing quicker than the glaciers; different channels have dropped information applications together with the likes of Al Jazeera; There are only a few good performs, which had been the writer, now and the over-paid, over-paid company has been decreased to the bottom widespread denominator and represents solely trite, brainless, nonsense.

Allegedly common applications Survivor, horrible ‘new’ comedy, boring quiz reveals, individuals strolling and driving trains across the UK and the world and so forth. There are additionally many individuals principally younger individuals who by no means watch the BBC so why ought to we/they pay for a TV license with the BBC? Out of date, outdated, they need to be humanely put to sleep now.


‘keep frozen’

I feel the license fee ought to stay frozen, to replicate the quantity of reruns proven, the dearth of latest applications, and the exorbitant salaries paid.

I do not like the dearth of impartiality within the group, and the rise in journalistic information reporters. I might a lot reasonably learn the information and provides it as details, with out the opinions of the presenters interspersed.

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‘I do not want BBC channels’

I really feel it is not truthful for me to pay for the TV license once I do not watch the BBC in any respect. I’m retired and I watch lots of films from the Internet. I do not want BBC channels.


‘No greater than £13 a month’

I’m in my early 70s and do not thoughts paying the license fee – by month-to-month direct debit. The BBC channels are those I watch essentially the most and I watch lots of movies, drama collection and different applications on repeat. I haven’t got a subscription to Sky, Netflix and so forth, and I can afford the month-to-month fee. However I would favor not to pay greater than £13+ monthly.

In Italy, the license fee is €9,00 monthly and contains promoting on all RAI channels. I do not thoughts some promoting on the BBC. The format between every program is structured in the identical method as commercials anyway. I might nevertheless want ‘moral or inexperienced’ promoting: no alcohol, non-recyclable plastic merchandise, sweets or excessive sugar merchandise, playing websites, oil, electrical energy, gasoline and water firms or adverts specifically designed for youngsters.


‘historic tax’

The BBC assume they characterize good value for the license fee no matter how you are feeling it is time to scrap this archaic tax. Personally I would love to see them go to pay per view.


‘A neurotic need to reassure everybody’

We want an ad-free public service broadcaster as a result of business sponsorship typically lowers requirements and independence – witness the unhappy decline of Channel 4 since its inception.

The issues going through the BBC now are its neurotic need to appease everybody and its perception that the answer to all the things is extra layers of nanny administration and paperwork. He additionally wastes massive sums of money on millionaire soccer nerds and superstar information presenters.

The program commissioning course of is extraordinarily heavy and extra on the Hollywood mannequin. The reply is to scale back administration and remove among the gatekeepers. BBC iPlayer and BBC Sounds are steps in the best route into the digital panorama. Some of John Reith’s angle is absurd at the moment however he believed {that a} nationwide broadcaster needs to be a cultural chief. If the BBC can reinvent itself I might be completely satisfied to pay the license fee. But there is lots of work to be executed…


‘The BBC is meant to be a public service’

The BBC is meant to be a public service, not a authorities broadcaster. The authorities, which opposes the expression of views or opinions which don’t conform to its personal, is continuously attacking the establishment, with the prepared help of vested pursuits such as Murdoch or Harmondsworth.

Tragically, the BBC has failed to uphold its personal beliefs, and has degraded itself. If a broadcaster that is free from business constraints is justified and that considerations us all, it ought to return to the form of output that it nonetheless manages to broadcast on radio stations.


Some of the questions and solutions have been edited for this text. You can learn the complete dialogue within the feedback part of the unique article.

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