Yet Another Cycling Forum

General Category => The Knowledge => OT Knowledge => Topic started by: Wowbagger on October 31, 2014, 07:31:35 pm

Title: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on October 31, 2014, 07:31:35 pm
After a number of years being tempted not to buy a licence - we watch hardly any television and it's been like that for years - the BBC's track record over the past 12 months or so has persuaded me that it is beyond redemption and I will not renew my licence when it becomes due at midnight tonight.

Quite apart from the absence of a set, are there any other precautions we should carry out to keep the Crapita Enforcement Brigade off our backs? We are subscribers to Virgin, who supply us with a package including a television signal (unused) and a mega-fast internet connection and a phone line. I have tried today to uncouple the television from the package, but the droid I spoke to was clearly not capable of comprehending that I didn't want any television signal. We do possess a very old "Telewest" cable television set-top box but it's years since we connected it to the wall socket or power. I note that the name Telewest disappeared in 2006.

I am aware of the need not to watch stuff live.

Anything else I should be aware of?
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Kim on October 31, 2014, 07:34:18 pm
If you don't have a television or STB installed for use, and aren't watching stuff live on the interwebs, then I believe you're legal.  It then becomes an exercise in sarcasm vs database.

(Though other than the "To the occupier" letter at the start of each new academic year, I haven't had any harassing letters since I declared our lack of a television.)

You're probably getting a better deal on the interweb and phone line with the TV included, anyway.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Basil on October 31, 2014, 07:42:26 pm
Bastards still send letters to my dad.  I made the error of responding.  Wrong.

My last response was, Mr B senior has given up watching TV since he died four years ago.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on October 31, 2014, 07:46:59 pm
You need to reply to their letters for years till they leave you alone. You don't *have* to admit inspectors should they call but I have been soft enough to let them in.
They look at how the furniture is arranged. If the chairs do not all face one point, they are more likely to believe there's no TV.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on October 31, 2014, 07:49:11 pm
...

You're probably getting a better deal on the interweb and phone line with the TV included, anyway.

I probably am, but I wanted to be sure. I had a "text chat" with some bloke from Virgin today and downloaded  the transcript of our conversation. It was remarkably frustrating because he was only trained to increase people's packages and could not comprehend that I might like less.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: red marley on October 31, 2014, 07:51:03 pm
TV Licensing would appear to be clear on the matter:

http://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/check-if-you-need-one/topics/how-to-tell-us-you-dont-watch-tv-top12

Just tell them you won't be watching live, they then pay you one visit to check and then no more letters or visits.

Personally, as much as the BBC can annoy me, I'm glad they exist. Although I don't really watch live telly anymore, I still pay my licence on the basis that I want the BBC to continue. I'd hate to have only advert dominated channels on the TV and radio. Murdoch and his empire would love it though.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on October 31, 2014, 07:56:10 pm
I have been of that view myself for a long time, jo, and have paid the licence fee through gritted teeth, but the most recent pro-Israeli coverage of atrocities, and the totally unjustified difference between their treatment of the Green Party and UKIP have finally forced me to say "enough is enough!"
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: numbnuts on October 31, 2014, 08:03:12 pm
I was hoping to ditch the TV licence for November, but I was told that I didn't give the bank enough time to stop the direct debit, so hopefully it will be gone on December. The last time I watched TV was back in August and just got fed up with repeats, soaps, and bloody cookery programs.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on October 31, 2014, 08:04:52 pm
I wouldn't use DD to pay for a television licence. They take it in advance so it makes it all the harder to give up the television.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: barakta on October 31, 2014, 08:19:19 pm
We ditched our licence after the last election when the sodding BBC didn't subtitle their iPlayer reshows of the leadership debates and refused to fix the subtitles once reported as missing/broken.

iPlayer subtitles are still dire, but at least I'm not paying the BBC for the privilege of being unable to access their services.  Their political bias is also a reason I maintain my refusal to have a TV licence.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Polar Bear on November 01, 2014, 07:56:12 am
The myth that they will leave you alone if you inform them that you do not need a licence  is I'm afraid just that.  A myth.

The myth that they will leave you alone if you let them in is I'm afraid just a myth.

Why in the name of freedom should any person have to keep telling these people something is ridiculous.   I'm surprised that anybody tolerates such personal inconvenience.

I refuse them entry and don't even open, let alone respond to their letters.   

Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Auntie Helen on November 01, 2014, 08:08:20 am
It's interesting here in Germany as the equivalent licence (GEZ) is mandatory, even if you don't have a television. You have to pay it, no exceptions, and German television doesn't even have the quality of the BBC. And it's over 200€ a year. And it doesn't include Radio 4 which I think makes the TV licence worthwhile in itself.

Luckily my landlady and landlord have the GEZ and we have pretended, for the sake of the licence, that I live with them rather than in my own self-contained flat.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Oscar's dad on November 01, 2014, 08:30:34 am
But Wow, you won't be able to watch "Pointless" anymore!
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: delthebike on November 01, 2014, 08:37:42 am
But Wow, you won't be able to watch "Pointless" any more!
iPlayer viewed, catch up, Pointless will be okay to watch. There might even be a box set.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Oscar's dad on November 01, 2014, 08:49:57 am
"Pointless" box set  ;D
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: numbnuts on November 01, 2014, 09:32:30 am
But Wow, you won't be able to watch "Pointless" anymore!
I watched that once, at least they got the name right.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: rafletcher on November 01, 2014, 09:53:54 am
It's interesting here in Germany as the equivalent licence (GEZ) is mandatory, even if you don't have a television. You have to pay it, no exceptions, and German television doesn't even have the quality of the BBC. And it's over 200€ a year. And it doesn't include Radio 4 which I think makes the TV licence worthwhile in itself.

Luckily my landlady and landlord have the GEZ and we have pretended, for the sake of the licence, that I live with them rather than in my own self-contained flat.

IT is the same in France I believe - you have to have a licence regardless.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: snail on November 01, 2014, 10:11:01 am
I was without a tv for a few years. Finances were tight and it was the choice of £6 a week for food, or if I ditched the TV and licence, about £11 a week for food, which is much more doable. (Well, it was in 2006).

I only had one visit, and I was in the bath, so when I answered the door in a towel he was far too polite to ask if he could come in. I did get lots of letters though.

The strangest thing was the problem I had with the electricity company - they didn't believe the meter readings were so low, and were convinced I was scamming them. They, too, insisted on visiting and I did let them in. Over the phone, they just didn't get it:
"No, I don't have a washing machine, I use the laundrette. No, I don't have a PC, I have a low-energy laptop. No, I don't have a sound system, dishwasher, television..."
"What do you mean, you don't have a television?"
"I don't have a television."
Silence.
Followed by, "Blimey, you must have really good views where you live."
???
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on November 01, 2014, 10:43:10 am
The myth that they will leave you alone if you inform them that you do not need a licence  is I'm afraid just that.  A myth.

The myth that they will leave you alone if you let them in is I'm afraid just a myth.

Why in the name of freedom should any person have to keep telling these people something is ridiculous.   I'm surprised that anybody tolerates such personal inconvenience.

I refuse them entry and don't even open, let alone respond to their letters.

I can only speak for my own experience.
I cannot remember any letters from the TV Licensing people in the last five years or so.
Before that, I had many letters but I answered one on their website (I think it might have had NOTV somewhere in its address)
http://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/check-if-you-need-one/topics/how-to-tell-us-you-dont-watch-tv-top12 (http://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/check-if-you-need-one/topics/how-to-tell-us-you-dont-watch-tv-top12)
 and I have not been pestered since. I think at the time there was a disconnect between the website and the paper letters but the matter was sorted.

I have been visited by an inspector twice.
On the first visit, the man never entered the house.

David dealt with the next visit. I think the inspector did come into the house but we seem untroubled now.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: nicknack on November 01, 2014, 11:15:01 am
We still have a tele. A lot of days it doesn't get switched on. However, we're not about to get rid of it because there are a few programmes on the Beeb that we like to watch. So we don't mind paying a licence fee to help pay for them. I get pissed off with the folk who ditch the tele and watch everything on iPlayer without contributing a penny towards the stuff that they like to watch.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: ian on November 01, 2014, 11:29:17 am
We still have a tele. A lot of days it doesn't get switched on. However, we're not about to get rid of it because there are a few programmes on the Beeb that we like to watch. So we don't mind paying a licence fee to help pay for them. I get pissed off with the folk who ditch the tele and watch everything on iPlayer without contributing a penny towards the stuff that they like to watch.

This, really. If you watch it, pay for it.

We weren't, we just watch stuff on DVDs or Amazon, so dumped the licence months ago. Heard nothing. It's quite disappointing. I don't know why we get so hung it anyway, just bin and ignore.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: jsabine on November 01, 2014, 12:20:06 pm
I don't know why we get so hung it anyway, just bin and ignore.

I think it's the intimidating and accusatory tone of the letters (big black and red stamps all over the envelope stopping just short of telling your neighbours and the postman that you're an evader; telling you to retain this letter because you may want to refer to it in court; telling you that if you do not respond "a tv licensing inspector may call" (surely that's what they're paid for); the basic assumption that if you don't have a licence you're evadingin payment), coupled with the whole idea that just because you don't have a TV you need to sign up to be recorded on a database of deviants.

When we didn't have a tv a few years ago, I found it amusing to scrawl responses on the TVL letters - generally suggestions that to be useful, an inspector's visit would be better scheduled out of office hours - and send them back unstamped, without ever actually telling them we didn't have a telly. My parents used to get much more upset by the letters they received.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Polar Bear on November 01, 2014, 12:33:39 pm
I don't know why we get so hung it anyway, just bin and ignore.

I think it's the intimidating and accusatory tone of the letters (big black and red stamps all over the envelope stopping just short of telling your neighbours and the postman that you're an evader; telling you to retain this letter because you may want to refer to it in court; telling you that if you do not respond "a tv licensing inspector may call" (surely that's what they're paid for); the basic assumption that if you don't have a licence you're evadingin payment), coupled with the whole idea that just because you don't have a TV you need to sign up to be recorded on a database of deviants.

When we didn't have a tv a few years ago, I found it amusing to scrawl responses on the TVL letters - generally suggestions that to be useful, an inspector's visit would be better scheduled out of office hours - and send them back unstamped, without ever actually telling them we didn't have a telly. My parents used to get much more upset by the letters they received.

Pretty good summary there jsabine.    :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Kim on November 01, 2014, 12:35:54 pm
They should just give up and fund the BBC out of general taxation.  It'd cost less, and even with the political bias, strictly-come-bake-factor and dodgy subtitling, it's still better value than much of what the government spend our money on.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: barakta on November 01, 2014, 02:38:27 pm
I agree with Kim about general taxation. 

I too object to the authoritarian and threatening content of the letters. I don't respond to threats, either officially sanctioned or otherwise.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 01, 2014, 02:54:32 pm
We still have a tele. A lot of days it doesn't get switched on. However, we're not about to get rid of it because there are a few programmes on the Beeb that we like to watch. So we don't mind paying a licence fee to help pay for them. I get pissed off with the folk who ditch the tele and watch everything on iPlayer without contributing a penny towards the stuff that they like to watch.

I've been of that opinion for many years, having ploughed a few thousands' worth of licence fee into the BBC which has probably represented more than £5 per hour to watch. I doubt very much that I have watched anything like as much as an hour of television per week on average since we ditched out B & W licence in 1994 and forked out on a colour box. There was a period of some 6 years in which we had a free licence because my parents lived with us and were, of course, over 75. I think I've supported public service broadcasting for long enough though, and if they don't want people without a licence watching on Iplayer then they can always turn it off.

@Oscar's Dad: Dez has come up with a perfectly good suggestion for watching Pointless. Watch on Iplayer a day behind.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Pickled Onion on November 01, 2014, 03:52:21 pm
"What do you mean, you don't have a television?"
"I don't have a television."
Silence.
Followed by, "Blimey, you must have really good views where you live."
???

Strange isn't it?

There was an amusing conversation at work yesterday: A (youthful) colleague had  a picture on a  stick & I asked him about it, he said it was the "paddle of rebuke". I looked confused, then asked if it was something off the telly? He was incredulous and said "you don't watch the telly? What do you do when you get home?" which was followed by everyone else in the room saying "Anything BUT watch TV!!"

I still pay the licence, though as various above ^^^ it's not very good VFM as I've probably watched hignify once a month on air and that's it. However I'm a voracious consumer of R4 and the World Service and would willingly pay for that if it were an option. I watch a huge amount of films on disc but the general TV output is not worth switching on for. 
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: andrewc on November 01, 2014, 05:06:32 pm
I cancelled my direct debit & then used the online thing to say I no longer had a TV & didn't need a license.   They've since sent me a letter saying that as I cancelled the debit my license will expire on a given date.

A pity you can't get a radio license,  I've no objection to paying to keep Radio 3 on air!
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: asterix on November 01, 2014, 05:14:25 pm
It's interesting here in Germany as the equivalent licence (GEZ) is mandatory, even if you don't have a television. You have to pay it, no exceptions, and German television doesn't even have the quality of the BBC. And it's over 200€ a year. And it doesn't include Radio 4 which I think makes the TV licence worthwhile in itself.

Luckily my landlady and landlord have the GEZ and we have pretended, for the sake of the licence, that I live with them rather than in my own self-contained flat.

IT is the same in France I believe - you have to have a licence regardless.

That is right (in France).  The BBC will not let me use iplayer to watch their programmes in France even the proxy server option has been thwarted. 

My respect for the BBC has also nose-dived of late as do think they give UKIP far more exposure than they merit. Today I was irritated by the news that

Quote
The BBC has refused to apologise to Argentina over a Top Gear special filmed in the country.

Mr Cohen said the BBC would still broadcast the programme.

He said: "I am very aware that some have questioned whether the number-plates were in some way a prank.

"I would like to reassure you again that nothing we have seen or read since the team returned supports the view that this was a deliberate act."



They can't seriously think anyone believes it wasn't a stunt so why don't they and Clarkson have the guts to admit it instead of behaving like children who daren't own up to their actions?   They could just tell the truth: 'it was a stunt and we make no apology'.  Gutless.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Dibdib on November 01, 2014, 05:26:37 pm
They can't seriously think anyone believes it wasn't a stunt so why don't they and Clarkson have the guts to admit it instead of behaving like children who daren't own up to their actions?   They could just tell the truth: 'it was a stunt and we make no apology'.  Gutless.

I don't think NASA have apologised for faking the moon landings either.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: andrewc on November 01, 2014, 06:50:43 pm
On checking the gash email account I use when I don't want people to have my main address I found the following epistle:

Dear Sir/Madam,

You've let us know you don't need a licence, so you won't receive emails or letters from us for nearly two years – unless you've told us you'll need a licence before then, or we think your circumstances have changed.

In about two years, or sooner if appropriate, we'll get in touch to check if you still don't need a licence.

A quick reminder of the law.
You need to be covered by a TV Licence if you watch or record programmes, on any device, as they're being shown on TV. This includes TV sets, computers, mobile phones, games consoles, digital boxes and DVD/VHS recorders.

If you do start watching or recording TV, you can buy a new TV Licence quickly and easily online at tvlicensing.co.uk/pay or on
0300 790 6128 with your bank details ready.

Just to confirm...
We may visit your address to confirm that no licence is required. You see, it is our duty to make sure that everyone in the UK who needs a licence has one.

We visit addresses to check because, when we make these visits, almost 1 in 5 is found to need a licence. Please be assured that this is a routine visit, and will take no more than a few minutes.

Yours faithfully,

Debbie Beckett
Customer Services
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on November 01, 2014, 07:15:01 pm
I see it is only 3½ years since this email exchange. I've heard nothing since though.

Quote

TV LICENSING
BRISTOL
BS98 1TL

Tel:      0300 790 6087
Fax:      0300 790 6012
Email:    enquiries@tvlicensing.co.uk
Our Ref:  TVL22931869   

Lic.No.    3483076967         
Matchcode  ********   

13/05/2011 

Dear Dr Vecht

Thank you for telling us you don?t need a TV Licence.

Within the next few weeks you will receive another letter.  This asks you to reply only if a set has been installed or a licence purchased.

As no licence is required, as a set is not in use, then you do not need to reply.  In due course one of our Visiting Officers will call on you and confirm the situation.  Once confirmed, we will update our records accordingly.  This will protect your address from letters, for a longer period than would normally be set at an address, as it has been confirmed that a set is not in use.

I am sure you will appreciate, we have a responsibility to the Licensing Authority and the licence holding public to be certain of the licensing requirements for each address.

I hope the information above clarifies the situation.

Yours sincerely,

Mr W Kimball
TV Licensing

Need further help? Try our online help service, click here to access it: http://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/info.

----- Original Message -----
From: "" <>
Date: 12 May 2011
Subject: Contact Us

APPLICATION DETAILS
---------------------------
TYPE OF APPLICATION: Contact Us
APPLICATION ID: CU1005274642
APPLICATION DATE: 12/05/2011

CUSTOMER DETAILS
------------------------
TITLE: Dr
INITIALS: **
SURNAME: ******
LICENCE NUMBER:
LICENCE ADDRESS 1: *******
LICENCE POSTCODE:  *******
TELEPHONE NUMBER:
EMAIL ADDRESS: **@**

CONTACT QUERY DETAILS
-------------------------------
CONTACT US CATEGORY: General Enquiry
CONTACT US TOPIC: All 
CONTACT US QUERY: WHY HAVE YOU SENT ME A LETTER SAYING I HAVE NOT ANSWERED YOUR LETTER WHEN I HAVE?
REF 3147979027.
TVL22633175 COVERS MY ADDRESS. I HAVE NO TV.
LEAVE ME ALONE OR I WILL GET VERY ANGRY!
WHY DOES YOUR ONLINE 'NO TV' DECLARATION PAGE HAVE NOWHERE TO  ENTER REFERENCE NUMBERS IN LETTERS YOU HAVE SENT TO US? YOU ARE BUREAUCRATIC IDIOTS!

______________________________________________________________________
This email has been scanned by the MessageLabs Email Security System.
For more information please visit http://www.messagelabs.com/email

Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: rafletcher on November 01, 2014, 07:38:11 pm
I think I've supported public service broadcasting for long enough though, and if they don't want people without a licence watching on Iplayer then they can always turn it off.

And how is that supposed to work for those of us that do pay the licence fee then??  If you have such a low opinion of the BBC and don't want to pay for, don't use its output. To do otherwise is hypocritical.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 01, 2014, 07:46:16 pm
The BBC clearly doesn't have a problem with people without television licences watching on Iplayer, or reading its website.

Assuming that, over a long period, you have watched more television than I have (the vast majority of people have) but paid precisely the same price, then I'm no longer subsidising your viewing.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Kim on November 01, 2014, 08:14:54 pm
I don't think that Wowbagger (or anyone else who doesn't have a television but listens to BBC radio or visits the BBC websites) is responsible for the way the BBC is funded - there's no hypocrisy in not paying for a licence for things you don't need a licence for.

Yes, it's silly, but that's the government's fault, not the users'.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on November 01, 2014, 08:37:17 pm
I don't think that Wowbagger (or anyone else who doesn't have a television but listens to BBC radio or visits the BBC websites) is responsible for the way the BBC is funded - there's no hypocrisy in not paying for a licence for things you don't need a licence for.

Yes, it's silly, but that's the government's fault, not the users'.

+1
The government scrapped the Broadcast Receiving Licence for radio when I was a kid.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Kim on November 01, 2014, 08:38:15 pm
Shades of the "you don't pay road tax" argument...
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Butterfly on November 01, 2014, 09:16:51 pm
I've never paid for a tv licence. Until I was 36 I lived with other people who paid for one (or didn't have a tv) and I've never had a tv since. I don't really watch things on i-player because I don't know what's on and if someone says 'you should watch x' I never get round to it. The German and French systems seem most unfair to me! If there was still a radio licence, I would pay for that. :)
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on November 01, 2014, 10:16:57 pm
I am quite happy to pay for what is required by law but if the gubbishment decide I don't need to pay, so be it.
I watched the Panorama Baby P programme earlier in the week on iplayer but this is the first time I have done this in ages.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: road-runner on November 01, 2014, 11:46:23 pm
Anything else I should be aware of?

I read some time back that the average person watches 3.5 hours of TV every day. I haven't had a TV since I left my parents house when I was 18 and now neither do you, Wow, so that's 1,277.5 hours a year you have free to invest in something, eg. learn something new or take up a new hobby, spend half your new free time walking, or make an extra move or two each day in a game of chess.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 01, 2014, 11:58:33 pm
I don't shave either! I do want to take up cycling though.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: asterix on November 02, 2014, 06:33:17 am
They can't seriously think anyone believes it wasn't a stunt so why don't they and Clarkson have the guts to admit it instead of behaving like children who daren't own up to their actions?   They could just tell the truth: 'it was a stunt and we make no apology'.  Gutless.

I don't think NASA have apologised for faking the moon landings either.

I don't remember any Loonies being offended?  Maybe you can't get telly on the moon?
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: rogerzilla on November 02, 2014, 07:51:36 pm
spend half your new free time walking
Who else misread that and thought "I do that anyway"?  ;D
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: citoyen on November 02, 2014, 10:30:01 pm
spend half your new free time walking
Who else misread that and thought "I do that anyway"?  ;D

I would make some reference to the QI klaxon but have the contributors to this thread wouldn't get it.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: ian on November 03, 2014, 10:02:34 am
Sorry, I don't the do the entire you're wasting your life thing, I only listen to Radio 4, and thats gone downhill, I remember when, John Humphrys, John Humphrys! Whatever happened to the MANCHESTER Guardian, eh? And trolleybuses. Admittedly, I don't understand the sitting in front of the TV from home to bed (like my family do), but horse for courses, TV gives a lot of people pleasure. As does plugging away at computers, riding a bike, or building an orgasmatron in the garage.

But anyway, I think if you use the BBC's services in any format, you should pay up, rather than think of ways to excuse it. That's modern life and its gospel of sundry entitlement.

I think we got the letter about a visit but I binned it. I mostly bin anything with the words TV Licensing on the front (we did go through a spell of them when we got married, it's still beyond the ken of many people and organisations to understand that we have different surnames). I'm not sure I'd let them inspect my house if they did turn up. The aerial isn't actually plugged into anything (thought it would be a 10 minute job to reconnect) but I'm not sure why I'd want to let a stranger wander around my house to demonstrate what I've already told them. If they think I'm watching TV illegally, it's their job to find the evidence.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 03, 2014, 11:27:26 am
Our aerial is lying horizontally across the roof, the result of years of rust and a gale in about 2009. It doesn't seem to have broken any slates as Dez flew his quadcopter & Go-pro over the roof a few weeks ago just to make sure.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Julian on November 03, 2014, 12:07:26 pm
I haven't had any more visits since offering to let the inspector into the garage to see the pieces of our television.  He queried why I was leading him to the garage and I explained that we keep the television in a cardboard box in the garage because it is in multiple shattered pieces.  He naturally wanted to know more, so I explained (perfectly truthfully) that we shot it.  "Shot it," quoth he, "how?" "With guns," I responded, and he decided that not only did he not need to see it but he could also make a little note explaining that he was satisfied that we really do not have a (working) television.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Chris S on November 03, 2014, 12:37:03 pm
I simply don't buy the "If you watch it, you should pay for it" argument.

If they want us to pay for it - then they shouldn't put it in the public domain. Simple as that. I don't have to pay for my use of GPS satellites either - another public domain "service". If they want to fund public service TV out of my taxes (which I pay a fuck tonne of), then that's up to the politicians to sort out - that's not my problem.
FWIW, I'm a big fan of public services, including public service TV. The funding model for the BBC is fucked up - but again, that's not my responsibility.

As for the hateful Licensing people - I have no idea how they get away with such harassment. I haven't watched "live transmission" TV for years - I've had two visits, and still they harass me.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on November 03, 2014, 12:38:21 pm
I haven't had any more visits since offering to let the inspector into the garage to see the pieces of our television.  He queried why I was leading him to the garage and I explained that we keep the television in a cardboard box in the garage because it is in multiple shattered pieces.  He naturally wanted to know more, so I explained (perfectly truthfully) that we shot it.  "Shot it," quoth he, "how?" "With guns," I responded, and he decided that not only did he not need to see it but he could also make a little note explaining that he was satisfied that we really do not have a (working) television.

 ;D ;D ;D

Teh Julian wins again!

Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Oscar's dad on November 03, 2014, 12:38:40 pm
A well made point ...

I don't think that Wowbagger (or anyone else who doesn't have a television but listens to BBC radio or visits the BBC websites) is responsible for the way the BBC is funded - there's no hypocrisy in not paying for a licence for things you don't need a licence for.

Yes, it's silly, but that's the government's fault, not the users'.

But ...

I think I've supported public service broadcasting for long enough though, and if they don't want people without a licence watching on Iplayer then they can always turn it off.

And how is that supposed to work for those of us that do pay the licence fee then??  If you have such a low opinion of the BBC and don't want to pay for, don't use its output. To do otherwise is hypocritical.

Wow, you're saying that you are not going to watch telly for reasons of principle which is fair enough ...

Quote
...but the most recent pro-Israeli coverage of atrocities, and the totally unjustified difference between their treatment of the Green Party and UKIP have finally forced me to say "enough is enough!"

So surely your principles should dictate you shouldn't watch any BBC content on any medium?
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Oscar's dad on November 03, 2014, 01:24:40 pm
I simply don't buy the "If you watch it, you should pay for it" argument.

If they want us to pay for it - then they shouldn't put it in the public domain. Simple as that. I don't have to pay for my use of GPS satellites either - another public domain "service". If they want to fund public service TV out of my taxes (which I pay a fuck tonne of), then that's up to the politicians to sort out - that's not my problem.
FWIW, I'm a big fan of public services, including public service TV. The funding model for the BBC is fucked up - but again, that's not my responsibility.


I bet I know where this thread is heading  ;D

The thing is that there is no easy way of paying for GPS or any number of on-line services (Google, Facebook, Twitter etc) and these services were launched in the knowledge that most users would pay nothing for them.

But there is an easy way of paying for the BBC, the TV Licence Fee.  And, for what it's worth I think it is a daft way of funding the BBC.

Wow's position is problematical as he says he doesn't like the BBC's alleged bias and editorial standards and these are his reasons for no longer paying for a TV license - this position is fair so far.  But, he does want to watch some of the BBC's light entertainment content and he will watch this content on iPlayer.

To my mind, you either don't watch any BBC content by any means and therefore don't need to pay for a TV licence or you pay for a TV license, watch the BBC content you enjoy but don't watch the content you allege to be biased or of poor editorial quality.

Wow, in my view if you watch BBC content on iPlayer you're compromising your principles and leaving TV License payers to fund your enjoyment of some BBC content which can't be right.

Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 03, 2014, 01:55:04 pm
I don't think I said anywhere that it was about principles, OD, other than that of me deciding that I'll no longer pay for a lot more than I'm getting - or, for that matter, anyone else in the house! If you like, it was a principled stand by which I paid for a licence because, like Jo, I thought the BBC on balance to be a Good Thing, even though I didn't get anything like my money's worth out of it. I have my doubts that it will ever be a Good Thing again so the principle has become redundant.

I think a reasonable comparison is that I used to boycott South African goods as a principled stand against apartheid. It would be a little foolish of me to continue that boycott since apartheid ended many years ago. That is not to say that I support unreservedly what goes on in the massively fucked-up state of South Africa, but I'll buy their goods if necessary, transport miles notwithstanding.

Edit: having said that, I can't think of anything that we buy regularly that comes from South Africa. We do our best to buy British fruit and, if we can't get it, EU stuff (sorry, Steph!).
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 03, 2014, 01:59:40 pm
I haven't had any more visits since offering to let the inspector into the garage to see the pieces of our television.  He queried why I was leading him to the garage and I explained that we keep the television in a cardboard box in the garage because it is in multiple shattered pieces.  He naturally wanted to know more, so I explained (perfectly truthfully) that we shot it.  "Shot it," quoth he, "how?" "With guns," I responded, and he decided that not only did he not need to see it but he could also make a little note explaining that he was satisfied that we really do not have a (working) television.

Did he then edge carefully out of the garden, keeping you within sight all the time?
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Oscar's dad on November 03, 2014, 02:16:20 pm
I don't think I said anywhere that it was about principles, OD ...

Wow, you said this ...

After a number of years being tempted not to buy a licence - we watch hardly any television and it's been like that for years - the BBC's track record over the past 12 months or so has persuaded me that it is beyond redemption and I will not renew my licence when it becomes due at midnight tonight.

Then you said this ...

I have been of that view myself for a long time, jo, and have paid the licence fee through gritted teeth, but the most recent pro-Israeli coverage of atrocities, and the totally unjustified difference between their treatment of the Green Party and UKIP have finally forced me to say "enough is enough!"

OK, so perhaps I mistook your principles for your opinions, but I think my point stands.  You seem to be saying that you are stopping paying the License Fee because you don't like stuff the BBC is doing.  But I don't understand how you can leave others to continue paying for a service you wish to carry on consuming, albeit partially.

I suppose you can justifiably argue that the BBC allows you to do so but I think its a poor position to take.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on November 03, 2014, 02:27:12 pm
I haven't had any more visits since offering to let the inspector into the garage to see the pieces of our television.  He queried why I was leading him to the garage and I explained that we keep the television in a cardboard box in the garage because it is in multiple shattered pieces.  He naturally wanted to know more, so I explained (perfectly truthfully) that we shot it.  "Shot it," quoth he, "how?" "With guns," I responded, and he decided that not only did he not need to see it but he could also make a little note explaining that he was satisfied that we really do not have a (working) television.
But, but, but... surely you, or rather Charlotte, shot it with a bow and arrow, not a gun!
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Kim on November 03, 2014, 02:30:08 pm
The thing is that there is no easy way of paying for GPS or any number of on-line services (Google, Facebook, Twitter etc) and these services were launched in the knowledge that most users would pay nothing for them.

GPS is funded by the US taxpayers.  Galileo is being funded (at least in part) by the EU and ESA, which means our taxes, and will provide an open service equivalent to GPS free of charge to anyone with a receiver.  This seems like a reasonable quid pro quo for the use of GPS and GLONASS (unless you're anti-EU  ;) ).

Google, Facebook, Twitter, ITV, commercial radio, free newspapers etc are different, in that the end users are the product not the customer.  We're already paying for the services with our minable data and access to our brains.  And then paying for them again when we buy their customer's products and services.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: ian on November 03, 2014, 02:46:10 pm
Perhaps we should refer to the gospel of St Kevin on such matters, it’s a part of the Apocrypha and is strangely apt in modern times. Not for nothing is it often known as The Gospel of Sundry Entitlements. I’ll quote some of the more apposite verses (especially chapter 4, verse 32, which is very relevant to today’s lesson):

And lo, the bounty of the internet will be upon us. Let he who desire, sate that desire. Because. (Kevin 1:1-2)

If that product be not delivered in a format, or at time, or a price that suits, then thou shalt torrent or download, and they shalt be righteous amongst men. (Kevin 3:12)

And that righteousness shalt be profound, and loudly writ upon the internet, and thou shalt shout with voice of the new prophets, and when challenged upon those terms, thou shall utter the words ‘but copying isn’t theft.’ (Kevin 3:13)

Thou shalt renege on any promise to otherwise reward, for the intent of a righteous man is enough. (Kevin 4:15)

If thou lacketh funds, thou shalt torrent freely. (Kevin 4:31)

If thou disagreeth with the policy or politics, thou shalt download the bits you like regardless. (Kevin 4:32)
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 03, 2014, 02:48:35 pm
I don't think I said anywhere that it was about principles, OD ...

Wow, you said this ...

After a number of years being tempted not to buy a licence - we watch hardly any television and it's been like that for years - the BBC's track record over the past 12 months or so has persuaded me that it is beyond redemption and I will not renew my licence when it becomes due at midnight tonight.

Then you said this ...

I have been of that view myself for a long time, jo, and have paid the licence fee through gritted teeth, but the most recent pro-Israeli coverage of atrocities, and the totally unjustified difference between their treatment of the Green Party and UKIP have finally forced me to say "enough is enough!"

OK, so perhaps I mistook your principles for your opinions, but I think my point stands.  You seem to be saying that you are stopping paying the License Fee because you don't like stuff the BBC is doing.  But I don't understand how you can leave others to continue paying for a service you wish to carry on consuming, albeit partially.

I suppose you can justifiably argue that the BBC allows you to do so but I think its a poor position to take.

From that you can infer that, despite not particularly consuming its product, I was still prepared to continue to support the BBC. That was on principle, if you like.

I have finished with that principle as I feel that it no longer applies - as per my S. African analogy. The BBC has changed, moved on, like S. Africa. I am therefore no longer applying principles to my relationship - or lack of it - with the BBC. I'll grant you that the BBC is such an all-pervading force in our lives - Mrs. Wow is an inveterate R4 listener, for example, and I occasionally listen to R3 - that it is hard to avoid. But - it's an all-or-nothing relationship, isn't it? Either you pay for a licence or you don't, although I suppose as a point of principle I could pay £49 for a B & W licence just to salve my conscience or, more to the point, your conscience on my behalf.  :P  I can't just pay for radio as there is no mechanism so to do. I can't watch "Pointless" on PAYG. We don't live in Hungary so there isn't a Broadband Tax.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Kim on November 03, 2014, 02:55:12 pm
I suppose as a point of principle I could pay £49 for a B & W licence just to salve my conscience

I though the B&W licence ceased to exist when they stopped transmitting in PAL?  You need a colour receiver these days, even if it's connected to a B&W set (similarly to needing a colour licence for a VCR with a B&W set).


Mind you, I believe they also allow a DVB-S receiver that's been knobbled to only provide audio (radio, for the listening of) without a licence.  So it's hypocrisy all the way down.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Oscar's dad on November 03, 2014, 02:57:46 pm
Wow, cos I love you and wouldn't want anything to interfere with Mrs Wow's enjoyment of Radio 4 in general or "The Archers" in particular, plus I'd hate to upset St. Kevin, I will pay for you to watch "Pointless" on iPlayer.  In return you can carry on keeping me amused on the interweb and buy me the occasional pint.  How does that sound?

 ;D   :-*
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 03, 2014, 02:58:58 pm
To the moderators: I did not intend this thread to become part of POBI. I started it with a genuine desire to ensure that I am covered in not paying for a licence for a television set that I don't own and don't watch and to consult others who are in a similar position. It really ought to be quite simple.

But it isn't. For reasons that I fail to understand, others have decided to use the thread for other purposes and I find that I have to justify myself when perhaps I ought to tell them to fuck right off - but that wouldn't be particularly excellent, would it?
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: ian on November 03, 2014, 03:21:44 pm
Oh boo-hoo, Wow. You're the one that politicised this. To then turn around and say you're dumping the BBC because of its biased editorial policies, but hey you'll stick to consuming the bits you like. It's like me boycotting Israel. Except for the oranges, because they're so juicy. Oh, and the dates. So succulent. But that's it, I'm boycotting everything else about the damn place. That'll show 'em.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: rafletcher on November 03, 2014, 03:44:43 pm
Oh boo-hoo, Wow. You're the one that politicised this. To then turn around and say you're dumping the BBC because of its biased editorial policies, but hey you'll stick to consuming the bits you like. It's like me boycotting Israel. Except for the oranges, because they're so juicy. Oh, and the dates. So succulent. But that's it, I'm boycotting everything else about the damn place. That'll show 'em.

Don't forget the avocados!  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Polar Bear on November 03, 2014, 03:50:48 pm
As I am entitled to a 50% reduction in a TV licence due to my lack of sight and I do not have a TV or watch live broadcast of any nature, can I trade that against my enjoyment of radios 4, 5, 7, iPlayer and the beeb website please?   :D

My eldest lad has been living here for eighteen months.   Unbeknown to me he watches live streamed content via the internet.   Also unbeknown to me is the fact that he has a TV licence so we actually have one registered at this address.   
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Julian on November 03, 2014, 04:16:50 pm
I haven't had any more visits since offering to let the inspector into the garage to see the pieces of our television.  He queried why I was leading him to the garage and I explained that we keep the television in a cardboard box in the garage because it is in multiple shattered pieces.  He naturally wanted to know more, so I explained (perfectly truthfully) that we shot it.  "Shot it," quoth he, "how?" "With guns," I responded, and he decided that not only did he not need to see it but he could also make a little note explaining that he was satisfied that we really do not have a (working) television.
But, but, but... surely you, or rather Charlotte, shot it with a bow and arrow, not a gun!

We shot it with guns first. :)

Did he then edge carefully out of the garden, keeping you within sight all the time?

I don't know, I didn't watch him leave.  I returned indoors to my cup of tea and whatever activity I was involved in that didn't involve watching TV.  I think I might have been baking.  I was quite surprised not to have any follow up visit from the police.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Otto on November 03, 2014, 04:54:22 pm
So now that my 86 year old Mother in law is living with us I can cancel my licence?
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on November 03, 2014, 05:04:28 pm
So now that my 86 year old Mother in law is living with us I can cancel my licence?

Yes. Apply for a free licence in m-i-l's name.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on November 03, 2014, 05:07:06 pm
I haven't had any more visits since offering to let the inspector into the garage to see the pieces of our television.  He queried why I was leading him to the garage and I explained that we keep the television in a cardboard box in the garage because it is in multiple shattered pieces.  He naturally wanted to know more, so I explained (perfectly truthfully) that we shot it.  "Shot it," quoth he, "how?" "With guns," I responded, and he decided that not only did he not need to see it but he could also make a little note explaining that he was satisfied that we really do not have a (working) television.
But, but, but... surely you, or rather Charlotte, shot it with a bow and arrow, not a gun!

We shot it with guns first. :)

Did he then edge carefully out of the garden, keeping you within sight all the time?

I don't know, I didn't watch him leave.  I returned indoors to my cup of tea and whatever activity I was involved in that didn't involve watching TV.  I think I might have been baking.  I was quite surprised not to have any follow up visit from the police.
Obviously a lack of joined-up thinkerisationing between TV and Firearms Licensing (cos I bet you didn't tell him it was actually an air rifle, did you?)
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Otto on November 03, 2014, 05:16:07 pm
So now that my 86 year old Mother in law is living with us I can cancel my licence?

Yes. Apply for a free licence in m-i-l's name.

Cool
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: citoyen on November 03, 2014, 05:18:18 pm
So now that my 86 year old Mother in law is living with us I can cancel my licence?

Yep. We've been sticking it to The Man for the past ten years and not so much as a single threatening letter.

Some might say that £145.50 a year is a small price to pay not to have to live with your mother in law, but I couldn't possibly comment on that.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Wowbagger on November 03, 2014, 05:20:55 pm
So now that my 86 year old Mother in law is living with us I can cancel my licence?

As long as your premises have a television licence, I'm pretty sure you can. IIRC it has to be in the name of the over-75.

There were some interesting shenanigans after my dad moved out, into an old people's home. Getting a straight answer to a straight question when dealing with Crapita was nigh-on impossible. I wanted to find out what should happen about the over-75 licence, which still had some months to run. Did it expire on the date of the person moving out, or what?

All the Crapita bods would tell me was that my dad would need to license the television in his room at the OPH, but he didn't have a telly in his room. The only one available to him was in the lounge, which was (presumably) licensed communally. I pointed out quite clearly to Crapita that he didn't have a telly and therefore didn't need a licence but several letters and phone calls occurred before I found out the truth of the matter: the over-75 licence is allowed to expire in the normal way at the address it licenses even if the old person is no longer living at that address.

That set of correspondence occurred more that 9 years ago, so I do not know it it still applies, but I would doubt that the enforcement bods would have an "old person detector" in their van to check the bona fides of the licence.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on November 03, 2014, 05:27:33 pm
As I understand it the free licence for an old person is just like any other licence (but costs £0) and covers the household at that address.
As long as there is a valid licence for the address, the inspectors are unlikely to call.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: LEE on November 03, 2014, 05:39:36 pm
As I understand it the free licence for an old person is just like any other licence (but costs £0) and covers the household at that address.
As long as there is a valid licence for the address, the inspectors are unlikely to call.

I think you are legally required to watch Antiques Roadshow, Strictly Come Dancing and Songs of Praise on an endless loop.

Fortunately the BBC seems to have done the hard work for you and created said endless loop.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: citoyen on November 03, 2014, 05:43:31 pm
I think you are legally required to watch Antiques Roadshow, Strictly Come Dancing and Songs of Praise on an endless loop.

OTOH it means you don't have to watch Mock The Week or Ferne Cotton Investigates... on BBC Three.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on November 03, 2014, 05:54:44 pm
As I understand it the free licence for an old person is just like any other licence (but costs £0) and covers the household at that address.
As long as there is a valid licence for the address, the inspectors are unlikely to call.

I think you are legally required to watch Antiques Roadshow, Strictly Come Dancing and Songs of Praise on an endless loop.

Fortunately the BBC seems to have done the hard work for you and created said endless loop.

I don't think my parents watch any of these but their TV is in the bedroom and I don't go there...
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Jurek on November 10, 2014, 09:27:42 pm
On Saturday, while I was necking Prossecco in celebration of (possibly) the last FNRttC, they called.
They left a 'Please open straight away' note.
That's always going to be viewed as a p!$$ poor attitude in my book, and is guaranteed to ensure it will be one of the last things I do.
After I have done everything else I need to do.
So - They've reminded me of Teh Law
They've told me that as I was out (I think I'm still entitled to be out) they may 'drop by again soon'.
Sounds like I should organise some tea and cakes in anticipation.

Letter in bin.
No further action required.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on March 09, 2015, 07:09:26 pm
I have just received a letter dated 'March 2015' asking me whether I still did not need a TV Licence, stating that you had written to me and received no reply.
It also advised me to get in touch by 16 March 2015, only a week away.
This letter was somewhat threatening.

I responded promptly to your initial email and received your confirmation that day, some six weeks ago.

I am dismayed you take so long to update your records, accuse me of not responding and send me threatening letters.
 
Helen Vecht
Edgware

From: "confirmation@tvlicensing.co.uk" <confirmation@tvlicensing.co.uk>
To: helenvecht@btinternet.com
Sent: Monday, 26 January 2015, 12:56
Subject: Your recent TV Licence declaration

Thank you for letting us know you do not need a TV Licence.
Your No Licence Declaration no: 3483076967
We will confirm this in a letter and may follow up with a visit. If you receive a letter from us asking you to buy a TV Licence in the next few days, you do not need to respond. Our records are being updated. If your circumstances change, and you do start to watch programmes as they are being shown on TV, you need to be covered by a TV Licence. You can buy one quickly and easily at www.tvlicensing.co.uk/pay
TV Licensing
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Polar Bear on March 09, 2015, 07:12:50 pm
Unfortunately their behaviour is just the same as telephone scammers and email phishers.   Once they've had a positive response from you they simply engage in a war of attrition regardless.

I just file their shite missives unopened in the recycling.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: arabella on March 09, 2015, 08:59:47 pm
To those of you who are not big and hefty:
in the days when I had no tv they sent the usual stream of letters, duly (i) returned to sender or (ii) ignored, depending on what mood I was in
they then sent a female person whom I refused to let in
so they sent a big, hefty and agressive person who lurked about outside until I returned
having had truck previously with agressive-people-larger-than-me I was Not Happy or Comfortable
Fortunately I had  friend with me at the time. 

I almost think it's worth having a tv licence not to have additional big agressive people lurking.  Except it shouldn't work like that.

Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on March 09, 2015, 09:38:06 pm
I have given them full information.
They know all my details now.
I've been inspected twice but the chap never entered my place first time, after I invited him to look at the Non-TV in the lounge or kitchen etc.
Partner dealt with inspector next time.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: ian on March 09, 2015, 10:05:06 pm
Out of morbid curiosity I opened my weekly love letter from my constant admirers at TV Licensing Central. They also claim to have visited and found no one at home but they're coming back (they didn't specify when and left no note at the time, so I think the smell I'm smelling is bullshit). Seriously, I don't watch the your TV channels, I give my money to Amazon and Netflix and I suspect they won't act like psychotic stalkers if I opt to discontinue the service.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Kim on March 09, 2015, 10:10:33 pm
so they sent a big, hefty and agressive person who lurked about outside until I returned
having had truck previously with agressive-people-larger-than-me I was Not Happy or Comfortable
Fortunately I had  friend with me at the time. 

That's harassment and then some.  Completely unacceptable.   >:(


Quote
I almost think it's worth having a tv licence not to have additional big agressive people lurking.  Except it shouldn't work like that.

I can understand that.  It's easy for me to ignore them, never having encountered anything more than a passive-aggressive letter.


I'm left wondering about the economics of the thing.  Surely employing assorted hefty and aggressive people must cost far more than the licences they intimidate people into paying for...
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on March 09, 2015, 10:18:54 pm
so they sent a big, hefty and agressive person who lurked about outside until I returned
having had truck previously with agressive-people-larger-than-me I was Not Happy or Comfortable
Fortunately I had  friend with me at the time. 

That's harassment and then some.  Completely unacceptable.   >:(


Quote
I almost think it's worth having a tv licence not to have additional big agressive people lurking.  Except it shouldn't work like that.

I can understand that.  It's easy for me to ignore them, never having encountered anything more than a passive-aggressive letter.


I'm left wondering about the economics of the thing.  Surely employing assorted hefty and aggressive people must cost far more than the licences they intimidate people into paying for...

From what friendly inspector #1 said, most of the other addresses he had visited did have TVs and if he gets ten positives a day, that's £1400 in Licence fees.

I think friendly inspector was cheered by my approach as other people had been aggressive or defensive.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: ian on March 09, 2015, 10:30:40 pm
I'm still unclear how a visit works. I have a TV and I have a TV aerial. One is not connected to the other, but given about five minutes, I could probably unwind the cable and mung it into the back of the aerial socket (and vice versa). I'd offer my soul as collateral on a solemn promise to never, ever watch broadcast TV again but Finestre already has it in a jar.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on March 09, 2015, 10:53:29 pm
Inspector calls. By law you do not have to let him in AFAIK.

Takes a quick look round home, probably observing seating arrangement more than presence/absence of a TV.

If you can demonstrate to his satisfaction you have no working TV equipment he will go and TV Licensing will write after a few  days.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Kim on March 09, 2015, 10:56:05 pm
Whereas if you have seats cunningly arranged around the DVD / mpeg stream watching / consol gaming box, which just happens to be in the same corner of the room as the aerial socket...
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: ian on March 09, 2015, 11:46:12 pm
Whereas if you have seats cunningly arranged around the DVD / mpeg stream watching / consol gaming box, which just happens to be in the same corner of the room as the aerial socket...

Which I do...
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: hellymedic on March 10, 2015, 01:21:30 am
David glanced at the letter before putting it into paper recycling.
He said he was getting sick of these people and if they sent an inspector he would either kill him or insist on a full tour of the house, loft, six out-buildings and garden...
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Polar Bear on March 10, 2015, 07:51:41 am
You certainly do not need to let these people in unless and until they have the appropriate warrant issued by the court.

Politely deny access and when they rant on about how you can be fined a thousand pounds, ask what will I be fined for?   That's when they tend to make their unfounded accusations.

I intent to video any future doorstep encounters with them on my smartphone.  From youtube examples I have seen they tend to get all arsey about being recorded which I find strange considering that they will have been at least told to expect this and most likely it is incorporated into their training*.   Perhaps they are trained to be aggressive and intimidating in spite of the fact that they have no legally-bestowed powers to conduct searches, or to pass summary judgement on the people who live in the homes that they seek to search.

* I am assuming that the doorsteppers are fully and properly trained given that it is in effect a government function albeit being delivered by a private, 'for profit' company on behalf of a public, not-for-profit state body.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: campagman on March 10, 2015, 08:26:02 pm
A TV licensing person called at my house a couple of months ago. He was not big or aggressive. In fact he was more apologetic for disturbing me. I let him in as I have nothing to hide. He only checked the living room and went on to explain that 8/10 calls he makes are to homes that do have a TV. Can't be a nice job, must get lots of shit/hassle. Luckily I do not get pestered about not having a license. He didn't know why.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Polar Bear on March 10, 2015, 08:33:37 pm
For many of us it's not about having 'nothing to hide', it's about personal privacy, about the basic principle of innocent until guilty, etc.   A snoop in your home confirms nothing in the modern age given that you can use your mobile phone, tablet, laptop, etc. to receive and watch live broadcast television.   The snoop in my eyes is designed to intimidate people, which it does.

I know of a couple who had two television licences.  They were individuals who moved in together but the harassment they received tipped the balance of these well-meaning, law-abiding folk resulting in the fact that they ended up with a licence each because Crapita would not accept that because they now lived in the same house that they only needed one licence.  How utterly shit is that?   
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: andrewc on March 10, 2015, 08:39:04 pm
The chap who came around to mine was old & apologetic,   he'd also marked me as "not in" on his handheld & couldn't change it.

If he'd been rude or aggressive I'd have led him up 8 flights of stairs before closing the door in his face  :demon:
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Chris S on March 11, 2015, 06:52:52 pm
The visits I've had have been (a) from the same person, and (3) almost identical.

Knock Knock.
"Hello, I'm here representing the TV Licensing.... blah blah"
"OK, come in - I'm working, but y'know..."
"Thank you"
"Right the TV is over there (points), the aerial socket is over there (points in the opposite direction)"
<Looks for cable betwixt. Finds none.>
"Thank you."
"See you in a year or two."

There's no way I'd have this kind of attention for:

(a) A Dog License (if they're even required these days)
(3) A driving license.
(VIII) A fishing license.

They should fuck right off. Or better still, come up with a funding system that works These Days, because y'know - I use the BBC a lot - their website, I'm a big iPlayer user, and I listen to the radio in the car - all services free to access in the Public Domain. If there was a tax for public service broadcast, I'd pay it.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Polar Bear on March 11, 2015, 07:08:28 pm
Or a shotgun license I presume? 
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: Pickled Onion on March 11, 2015, 07:33:01 pm
Unfortunately their behaviour is just the same as telephone scammers and email phishers.   Once they've had a positive response from you they simply engage in a war of attrition regardless.

I just file their shite missives unopened in the recycling.

Exactly.

I don't understand why anyone feels the need to engage with unwanted communication. Spam email: press delete; phone calls: put the phone down, no need to say anything either rude or firmly polite; junk mail: in the recycling, unopened. It's going to happen, no need to get wound up by it.
Title: Re: Ditching the television
Post by: asterix on March 22, 2015, 10:04:13 am
Have just rec'd an official letter from the Public Finance people in France.

They want to know if I have a TV.

This is because I pay for a licence under French local taxes.

They say if I don't have a TV they shouldn't be charging me for a licence and so I should tell them before May 31st.