Self harm at the BBC?

There’s really no accounting for taste. As the caller on this morning’s phone-in illustrated when she declared that there was nothing on the entire output of the BBC that suited her tastes , that the BBC were bullies and that being compelled to pay the license fee was against her human rights. Funny how that much maligned statute gets dragged up when it conveniences people.

Each to their own.

After weeks of speculation the BBC is to cut radio stations 6music (and if I hear one more ignoramus refer to it as radio 6 I swear I’ll explode. Pass the ammo) and the Asian network together with many web sites and youth  orientated initiates  whilst re-branding BBC radio 7 to Radio 4 extra (because it’d be strange to highlight the legacy of a missing number 6 station presumably) and trying to make Radio 2 ‘more distinctive’.

It was interesting to hear the culture secretary criticise the BBC for acting as if it was a dead cert that the next government would be a Conservative one (even though it’d be a bloody miracle if it wasn’t). Which of course hints at the real motivation behind these BBC cuts. They are political in motive and designed to placate any future Murdoch/ Cameron axis (of evil?) and the near certainty of a thorough butchering by the traditionally BBC-hostile Conservatives.

In this case though it seems akin to bloodying your own face in the hope of playing on the sympathy vote of any future encounter with a hostile playground bully. ‘Don’t pick on me’, the BBC seems to be saying, ‘I’ve already sawn off my own legs just to save you the trouble’.

Innovative tactic.

Photo by Joe Dunckley under this creative commons license

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2 thoughts on “Self harm at the BBC?

  1. Time was when most of the population liked and admired the BBC and when it was admired abroad, not only by British expatriates but also by foreign nationals. Paying the licence fee (which was relatively cheaper than today’s) was almost a patriotic act, or like renewing a club membership.

    But time moves on and relationships change. Today’s BBC is not the beacon in the darkness that it was during WWII. It is not unbiased; it clearly has agendas of its own. It behaves with the arrogance of big companies but unlike big companies, it is cushioned from the slings and arrows of outrageous market forces by the licence fee.

    We have no TV so we do not pay the fee but we had a job extricating ourselves from the sticky tentacles of the licencing authority.

    I used to be in favour of the licence fee; now I am opposed to it. Perhaps it is time for the BBC to make its own way in the world like all the other companies. I don’t think people should be forced to pay just because they could conceivably receive live TV. On that reasoning, we should all be in jail because we could conceivably commit murder (there’s that kitchen knife in the drawer, after all). Issue a dongle and let those people pay who wish to watch the BBC.

    If the argument is that abolition of the licence fee would deprive the BBC of funds, then that in itself is a reason for abolishing it: the licence makes people pay for something they do not want.

  2. A valid point of view though not really what I was discussing. We can apply the ‘why should I pay for something I don’t use’ argument to everything from childless couples paying tax that go to pay for schools and non book readers part subsidising libraries out of the council tax.

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