John Whittingdale, the Culture Secretary, has spoken out against the BBC License fee for some time. The BBC was already struggling with reduced income from the licence fee hole created by people just not bothering to pay or by people thinking that if they watch the BBC on i-player they don’t need to pay. Okay, if you’re short of money and have difficult choices to make and feel you won’t be found out – then you won’t pay the licence fee if you can help it, but for those of us who can pay – it’s important that we do, even if we no longer use a TV.
The more the BBC is undermined financially, the more its independent voice is lost along with our freedom of speech. The axing of much of the BBC World service by William Hague, has caused many problems, ironically – for the Home Office in particular.
As long as the BBC is independent it will survive – and it needs to have more income from licencing. BBC3 on internet only is not a problem. You don’t have to have aTV to watch BBC3. You can still buy a licence. Please keep the BBC as free as possible from the outside pressure of market driven culture, rather than culture driven culture. The BBC produces some hugely successful films (financially and artistically) and series, in its own right and its news reporting is exceptional. Perhaps we should each of us key in our License number before we can watch the BBC online? With 1,000 jobs being axed at the BBC already, we stand to lose a lot of talent unless we choose to pay.