Credit where credit is due: on April 2nd the BBC finally came up with an alternative view on the subject of the licence fee.
Appearing on BBC’s Two’s ‘Daily Politics Show’, Nick Ross said:
“Risk aversion is driving the BBC into a dead end… Replacing this poll tax with subscription would liberate the BBC. […]
“If we were honest, said Ross, “my view is we could get more revenue freely without sending people to prison or court because they do not pay their licence fee.”
BBC presenter Jo Coburn challenged Ross’s claims. She said: “The BBC is convinced it would lose money on the evidence and the polls they have done, people would not pay if they were not forced to”.
But Ross, best known for presenting the BBC’s Crimewatch programme, maintains that there is a bias in favour of the licence fee from within the BBC.
“The people commissioning this research will cling to the licence fee. They are cherry-picking evidence which sustains their own view,” he said.
“I understand where they are coming from. They are frightened and timid and they do not want the BBC to be challenged.
“The uptake will be enormous, if the BBC does good programming. That is what this is about.”
Readers in the UK can view that programme for a limited period of time on BBC iPlayer here.
Nick Ross also made a short film on the subject which was posted on the BBC News website and can be seen here.