4 thoughts on “Save the BBC

  1. I am not a great fan of the current BBC. It has a reliance on cheap game shows, dreadful comedies (Mrs. Browns Boys) and tired repeats ( Dads Army has been on permanent repeat for over 5 years), and the most annoying self advertising ( if Eastenders is so good that is on all the time, why does it need to be advertised?) Many of these issues may be down to lack of funding and it can still entertain with fantastic documentaries and enthralling series. I can find no redeeming features in Nadine Dorries. Petition signed.


    1. Yes, the BBC certainly isn’t what it was. I think I would miss Have I Got News For You, Radio 3+4, Sky at Night, The Proms, Young Musician. And after all that high cultural stuff, The Apprentice.


  2. Signed.

    I too have reservations about the Beeb at present. It is still far too London-centric; it has far too many bureaucrats; it produces an immense amount of dross and far too many repeats; it has withdrawn from large areas of what it used to do well, from most sports to theatre; its local programming is being diluted; and it continues (as Jerry Coyne would say) to osculate the fundament of religion.

    But it’s on a hiding to nothing. If it tries to cover the spectrum of popular music, say, it’s taking the bread out of the mouths of struggling commercial stations; if it doesn’t, then it’s not serving the whole nation. EmeritusBSM may not like Mrs Brown’s Boys, and neither do I; but it is nevertheless one of the most popular BBC1 shows. If it is to serve the whole nation, it has to be funded to do so properly, without political oversight or interference.

    I have wondered whether there might be a halfway house, such as the core functions of news, current affairs, the arts and factual programming being paid for from a reduced licence fee, and the rest, including soaps and drama series, being on subscription. But my idea of core functions is unlikely to be the same as everybody else’s. And the subscription service would have to be Government-subsidised at the start to build up some critical mass (I believe that Netflix is still not making much if any profit). So I guess we need to keep the universal licence fee if the Beeb is to survive and thrive.


  3. Signed

    Sport is a tricky one for the BBC, since pay channels have hoovered up all the top football – like it or not, one of the most popular sports. But their coverage of the Olympics and Paralympics has been excellent, and there are some popular sports such as speedway and shinty which get little or no coverage on any channel (shinty is covered on BBC Alba, but is worthy of a wider audience – there are English Shinty teams after all); the Beeb could champion those.

    There have been some quite dire attempts at comedy (two efforts from the dreadful Matt Lucas for instance), but their documentaries are superb. I’m quite happy with the licence fee, and I think that on careful consideration a majority of viewers would feel the same. If there have to be cuts, I propose that the unctuous Rev R. Coles and ‘bubbly’ bohemian-priest-next-door Rev K. Botley are given the boot first.


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