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Reform or Abolish the BBC

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Showing 76-100 of 1000 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on 4 Jan 2011, 19:55:01 GMT
RABB says:
Jake Humphrey?

I'm not that bothered by him. He's nothing special, but nothing horrible either.

Can't stand Eddie Jordan, mind you.

Posted on 4 Jan 2011, 22:22:07 GMT
M. Smith says:
Absolutely, D.Cook!! So do you think the BBC must be doing an alright job then or not!? We humans are just so hard to please! It's like Xmas dinner: some people leave the sprouts, others the brandy sauce, some don't like the stuffing, and others are vegetarians. Does that mean we should do away with it completely?

In reply to an earlier post on 4 Jan 2011, 22:28:50 GMT
[Deleted by the author on 4 Jan 2011, 22:29:45 GMT]

Posted on 4 Jan 2011, 22:49:08 GMT
Last edited by the author on 4 Jan 2011, 23:09:51 GMT
Well to answer my critics. No my viewpoint isn't selfish - What are the the most important things that the government spends it's money on? health and education.

What I'm asking is that instead of just wasting our licence fees on "entertainment", which the other channels are perfectly capable of providing, the BBC should play a major role in education and technology (iPlayer is a good step in the right direction). That is a role it has played much more in the past, with penetrating documentaries, support of the open university, wonderful series such as "The ascent Of Man" and "Kenneth Clarke's Civilisation", remember the BBC micro anyone?

But under the current regime this focus seems to have been lost or mislaid and I think that's wrong! Education is something that benefits the whole of our society and particularly those from less privileged backgrounds. In particular we as a society have to cope with major issues such as climate change, nuclear proliferation, economic collapse and society needs to be informed to make the correct decisions, not to mention our increasing decline in the understanding of the natural sciences etc.

The selfish people are those who are claiming "Im all right jack" because they're happy with their dose of Dr Who, Top Gear, strictly come x factor or whatever dross keeps them happy and just can't see the big picture. But, maybe I'm being unfair to you all and it's just that you too are victims of the educational morass that afflicts the majority of the population.

Posted on 5 Jan 2011, 07:18:43 GMT
Last edited by the author on 5 Jan 2011, 07:34:00 GMT
RABB says:
Right, I'll tell my JW friends that they've got a tax break because they no longer have to fund the bloody transfusions they don't want.

My point is that there are going to be people uninterested in a channel that is purely educational, yet they'd still have to fund it. Why not cater for everyone?

EDIT: I suppose the BBC could save money by not letting Martin Brundle onto the grid before a race. The drivers never have anything massively insightful to say, and it can only break their concentration. I'm sure many a first-corner crash has been caused by a driver thinking "What was that strange little man waffling on about?"

Posted on 7 Jan 2011, 09:19:08 GMT
Sou'Wester says:
Two questions involved here: (i) is there still a need for public service broadcasting, and (ii) if so, is that best funded by the licence fee? To deal with the second question first, I'm not convinced that the TV licence is either fair or cost-effective. Just how much licence money is spent on administration of the system and on chasing licence dodgers? And despite the efforts of the authorities, just how many people get away without paying, thereby getting subsidised by the rest of us? If we are to continue with PSB we need to find a better way to fund it.
As to whether or not we need public service broadcasting; I think a certain amount may be justified but nowhere near on the scale currently provided at our expense by the BBC. Regardless of whether you think popular programmes such as "Top Gear", "Doctor Who" etc. are brilliant or rubbish, is this the sort of thing that should be a burden on the public purse? Definitely not, in my opinion. There are numerous BBC shows I enjoy, but I also enjoy going to the cinema, sporting events and many other forms of entertainment. I don't expect the latter to be publicly funded and see no reason why broadcasting should be any different.
There needs to a fundamental review of what public service broadcasting should provide; by all means let us have a full public debate about this, but my own view is that this should be concentrated on educational and cultural areas which, though desirable, are unlikely to be commercially viable. A clear and specific mandate - with appropriate funding - should then be awarded to a suitable organisation(s) (not necessarily the BBC) to provide these services.
As for the BBC, which keeps bleating about how it has to compete with commercial TV (and seems to do so by mindlessly apeing nearly all the worst features of the latter), give it the proper freedom to do so. Those who think it provides a good service can still subscribe, but it should no longer be a facility whose costs are forced on all TV viewers, regardless of whether they use or value the Beeb.

In reply to an earlier post on 7 Jan 2011, 14:05:48 GMT
Last edited by the author on 7 Jan 2011, 14:06:58 GMT
Good post SW.

One easy way to collect the licence fee would be to include it in the rates payment. Since both rates and TV apply to households and nearly all households have a TV, that would work well. All you'd need for those few who really don't want a television would be an opt out tick box on the rates form. That would probably save about £ 1/4 Billion in collection costs and make the whole thing much less of a hassle for householders...

I pretty much agree with your POV except perhaps that I think a greater orientation towards education and away from the silly ratings war with ITV (which is where a lot of the money is currently spent) and paying for sport would fully justify the licence fee.

In reply to an earlier post on 7 Jan 2011, 16:32:12 GMT
Dreamer says:
Nah at least eddie jordan knows what he's talking about. Jake humphries thinks he knows it all but he doesn't. The mark of a good sports presenter is if they would be willing to do it for free. Martin brundle would you can tell, i'm not sure about eddie jordan and david coulthard but jake humphries wouldn't.

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Jan 2011, 20:17:36 GMT
This was said years ago and originated from a 'Not The Nine O' Clock News' script read by Pamela Stephenson - you have simply repeated it.

Posted on 10 Jan 2011, 07:12:24 GMT
RABB says:
One thing. I think we could all agree on is that if the BBC are going to show drama, they need to support British talent, and not pay to have Mad Men. I'm glad they did, as I love the show, but it should have been on ITV.

Posted on 13 Jan 2011, 09:23:48 GMT
I'm a supporter in principle of the BBC, but their news journalists nowadays can't read. Have been disgusted that they said Sarah Palin wanted to 'take out' some Democrat seats, when it clearly shows that she said 'take back' the seats. It's worse than left-wing bias, it's zero integrity.

Posted on 13 Jan 2011, 09:31:07 GMT
RABB says:
Can I ask what 3 people found unhelpful or offensive about me previous post? My point was that instead of using the licence fee to pay for the rights to American shows like Mad Men, they should be investing in young British talent.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Jan 2011, 10:12:48 GMT
Last edited by the author on 13 Jan 2011, 10:13:55 GMT
Molly Brown says:
RAB, imo, the BBC should NOT try to copy great US TV, complete waste of money! They need to get back to doing what they USED to do VERY well, historical drama, satirical comedy, and unbiased news coverage. Programmes from the States, like Mad Men, Damages, Law and Order, CSI LV, etc, are superb, again imho.
I would like to know just WHERE is the young British talent these days. ITV and Channel 4 produce much better drama programmes now, thinking of some examples, Any Human Heart, the IT Crowd, ITV's Poirot and Marple.
I think a few people just felt that a lot of US Drama and Comedy is far better than anything the BBC produces.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Jan 2011, 10:24:10 GMT
RABB says:
I'd point to Life on Mars, and its follow-up Ashes to Ashes, as well as Luther for great drama. I think there is justification for the BBC to support the British acting fraternity, and my point mirrored your first sentence, but you seemed to be disagreeing.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Jan 2011, 10:46:40 GMT
Last edited by the author on 13 Jan 2011, 10:47:30 GMT
Molly Brown says:
RAB, I think I see what you are trying to say, Life on Mars, Ashes to Ashes, (have looked at LOM but don't really want to be reminded of just how awful the 70's were). Luther? They are original?? I don't watch them, so I can't say if they are good or bad? I was thinking more of programmes from the past:
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy : Complete BBC Series [1979] [DVD]
Elizabeth R (3 Disc Box Set) [1971] [DVD]
The Six Wives Of Henry VIII - Complete Series [1970] [DVD]
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy : Complete BBC Series [1979] [DVD]
A Perfect Spy: Complete BBC Series (3 Disc Box Set) [DVD]
Portrait Of A Marriage [DVD] [1990]
Blott On The Landscape [DVD] [1985]
Monty Python's Flying Circus - The Complete Boxset [DVD] [1969]
Not The Nine O'Clock News - The Best Of Not The Nine O'Clock News - Vol. 1 [DVD] [1979]
There must be more, I know they are quite old, but I don't really see programmes of this quality now on the BBC, The Tudors was very popular, but really! Agree though, that the BBC still make wonderful Natural History documentaries, not all by David Attenborough, Wild China for example.
We just have differing tastes I suppose, that's all. :-)

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Jan 2011, 10:53:45 GMT
RABB says:
To my knowledge they are all original BBC series.

I do think that a service by all people for all people is the best way to go for the BBC, others are going to disagree, of course.

I'd also point to the Live at the Apollo series in terms of supporting (mainly) British stand-up, and Armstrong and Miller for a clever sketch show.

Posted on 15 Jan 2011, 12:17:38 GMT
Also they have been banging on about the 'cross-hairs' of a gunsight, when the image was clearly an archery target. Am removing them from my desktop as they can't be bothered to be accurate let alone responsible - not that they'll care. Which is the best news front page for the computer?

Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells (actually not Tunbridge Wells, but definitely disgusted).


In reply to an earlier post on 15 Jan 2011, 13:20:48 GMT
Molly Brown says:
Caroline, what are you on abowt? BBC News do you mean? Sarah Palin's campaign clearly shows gun sights. But to be fair, the Democrats did start it, or did they? I think they had bullseye targets. Whoever started it, Glenn Beck, the Tea Party, the Democrats, Sarah Palin, Charlton Heston, Michael Moore........broadcasters and politicians over the pond and here have to think about how they may be inciting nutters out there.
Apparently in the US they couldn't believe that one our MP's was removed because he said some untruths about his opponent! That's HOW the US system works.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Jan 2011, 00:52:13 GMT
office_tramp says:
I am so tired if hearing the same Daily Mail reader rant. (Why think for yourself when you can let the tabloids - who all have a vested interest in attacking the BBC, with fingers in various media pies.) The BBC covers more art and science than any other broadcaster. Snooker is only on three times a year and most of it is red button. The open university now has access to better methods of content delivery thanks to DVD and the web. The licence fee is peanuts and frankly I would pay it for radio 4 and 6 alone.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Jan 2011, 02:29:48 GMT
Neutral says:
OT claims,

"The licence fee is peanuts". On your income maybe. For others it's certainly not.

"I would pay it for radio 4 and 6 alone." Better still you can pay Mrs Neutral's TV licence for her.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Jan 2011, 08:44:24 GMT
Molly Brown says:
Don't you get it free N? Just HOW old are you anyway?

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Jan 2011, 10:25:01 GMT
office_tramp says:
Well it's cheaper than Sky. Why are people so keen to fill Murdoch and Son's pockets but not to fund the BBC? It can only be because they've spent years being brainwashed by the Murdoch press - and the rest. The BBC is not perfect, and the emergence of disruptive technology like the internet, and now mobile internet, has effectively put it into competition with other sections of the media who are all trying to do the same thing, and consequently they loath the unfair advantage the BBC has, but the Corporation doesn't deserve much of the criticism it gets. How much do the executives at ITV earn? You kind of need to know what the market value of a TV exec is before you can accuse the BBC of largess. You (and I) may not appreciate Strictly Come Dancing and 'boring' sports but millions of people do and that's fine with me.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Jan 2011, 10:29:57 GMT
office_tramp says:
Palin's chief crime is to fail to understand the concept of metaphor at a deep enough level to have seen that her gun sights map was a terrible idea. The Democrats have used a map with targets on it in a similar fashion (originality is not her thing either) but the crucial difference is those the gun sights were aimed at States, not individual, named, politicians. I don't think what happened is in any way her fault, but she clearly isn't very bright, and certainly not fit for government.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Jan 2011, 11:23:24 GMT
The BBC showed the pamphlets, and they didn't name anybody so there is again a curious amount of misinformation relating to Palin. It kind of takes on a fascination all its own in the end! And they weren't gunsights, they were targets.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Jan 2011, 11:24:12 GMT
Last edited by the author on 16 Jan 2011, 11:25:16 GMT
Molly Brown says:
OT, yes it does seem now that the killer was just another "gun mad man" and wasn't inspired by the gun sights, he has a problem with both Republicans and Democrats. That said, it seems that US Politicians are now taking heed of the possible repercussions of what they say. As regards Sarah Palin not being very bright, well that is clear, but perhaps that could be said about George W. If she is elected as the Republican Candidate, as she IS still very popular, it would be her Vice President who would actually be running the Presidency, as with George W., where it was Dick Cheney.

Sorry to get off topic over the BBC, but it was Caroline's post where I think she was criticising BBC News for being biased that I replied to.

Getting back to BBC ratings, I think I heard on Sky News this morning that apparently the Indiana Jones films shown recently on BBC1 had 14-15 million viewers. Not bad for an "ancient" film. I know I was pleased to watch the original again, even though I have it on DVD.
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