Why we're here:
This blog is to highlight the unjust persecution of legitimate non-TV users at the hands of TV Licensing. These people do not require a licence and are entitled to live without the unnecessary stress and inconvenience caused by TV Licensing's correspondence and employees.

If you use equipment to receive live broadcast television programmes then the law requires you to have a licence and we encourage you to buy one.

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Boomerang Blackburn to Return to BBC Radio 2

Tony Blackburn, who was dismissed from the BBC less than a year ago, is set to return to Radio 2 at the start of the new year.

If you're a fan of Blackburn it's probably a good idea to stop reading now as we are not.

The circumstances surrounding the dismissal of the 73-year-old has-been are bizarre in the extreme. You can read about them in our earlier article.

Briefly, for the benefit of any newcomers, Blackburn was named in the Dame Janet Smith Review as having previously been interviewed in relation to the death of troubled teen Claire McAlpine.

When interviewed by Dame Janet, Blackburn denied any knowledge that a complaint had been made against him by Claire McAlpine's mother, Vera. However, documentary evidence from the early 1970s shows that he was interviewed by BBC bosses in relation to Mrs McAlpine's complaint.

A year or so later he was further interviewed about Mrs McAlpine's complaint by Sir Brian Neill QC, who was leading a BBC inquiry into the payola scandal. It must be stressed that there were no findings of impropriety on the part of Blackburn.

Dame Janet Smith, quite reasonably, came to the conclusion that the documentary evidence of the time was more reliable than Blackburn's memory. The BBC dismissed Blackburn on the basis that his evidence to the Dame Janet Smith Review had fallen short of the standard expected.

Blackburn was furious at the time and threatened legal action against the BBC Director General, Tony Hall, who had taken the dismissal decision.

Skip forward eight months and it appears all is forgiven. Tony Blackburn clearly isn't all that bad and the BBC clearly aren't a bunch of bastards for sacking him.

Blackburn clearly has no principles whatsoever. He is prepared to go back to the BBC, despite having threatened legal action and claiming he was made a scapegoat. The BBC clearly has no principles either, as it has decided to take back Blackburn after claiming his evidence to Dame Janet Smith was substandard..

The whole thing stinks to high heaven of BBC sleaze, incompetence and cover-up.

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Sunday, 9 October 2016

BBC Seeks New TV Licensing Postal Contractor

Does your business like threatening people that have done nothing wrong?

How about bullying little old ladies into paying for a service they don't legally need? Would your business be happy to distribute threats, lies and innuendo to innocent people on an industrial scale?

If you can answer "yes" to any of those questions then sadly you've missed the latest ISIS recruitment window, but don't despair because the BBC has an equally "exciting" opportunity that might be of interest.

The national broadcaster, in its statutory role as Licensing Authority, is seeking a new contractor to distribute TV Licensing threatograms.

By the BBC's own admission, the overwhelming majority of those letters - which are daubed with accusatory red print and riddled with shit-scary (not) legal threats - are destined for people that do not legally need a TV licence. The BBC is seemingly unable to distinguish between those that legally need a TV licence and those that do not, so all potential "licence-dodging scum" get the same heavy-handed treatment.

The new contract begins on 1st April 2017 (no joke) and initially lasts for 3 years.

According to the BBC: "These mailings play a key part in assisting the BBC to manage the collection and administration of licence fee revenue.

"Around 40% of TVL letters are sent to unlicensed addresses as part of ongoing enforcement programmes. TVL also issues letters to customers as payment reminders, notifications of missed direct debits or for customer service activity (for example confirmation of change of circumstances).

"Although significant progress has been made in reducing the reliance on postal mail as a communications channel, it will remain a very important method of communicating to licence fee payers for the foreseeable future, particularly for unlicensed addresses and customers without internet access."

In 2015/16 TV Licensing distributed a staggering 50.9 million mailings to properties across the UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man. With the TV licence fee having recently been "unfrozen", the number of mailings is expected to rise to around 61 million per annum. This is because TV Licensing is obliged to contact anyone paying by Direct Debit to notify them of the annual TV licence fee increase.

The BBC has previously confirmed to us that it costs on average 18.3 pence (at 2012 prices) for the distribution of every letter, not including the printing and finishing process. When these factors are taken into account, the true cost of every TV Licensing letter is around twice as much. No wonder it costs the BBC more than £100m a year - roughly equal to the combined spend on BBC Radios 1 and 2 - simply to administer the TV licence.

Any company wishing to bid for the new contract has until 9 am on 24th October 2016 to submit the necessary paperwork to the BBC.

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Saturday, 8 October 2016

HMRC Investigates 100 BBC Stars Over Tax Avoidance

Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs is conducting investigations into the tax affairs of 100 BBC "stars".

They stand accused of falsely declaring themselves self-employed in an effort to minimise their tax and National Insurance contributions.

The revelation came to light when the BBC submitted evidence to a tax tribunal considering the cases of news presenters Tim Willcox and Joanna Gosling. The pair, who regularly front BBC news and current affairs programmes, are currently appealing an HMRC ruling that they did not pay enough tax. Despite their regular appearances, both are said to have denied being directly employed by the BBC on their tax returns.

HMRC investigators are considering whether "IR35" rules, which govern the rate of tax paid by those working through an intermediary, have been followed.

The BBC, in an effort to distance itself from scandal, has highlighted that personalities "employed" (or are they?) by other broadcasters are also subject to investigation.

An HMRC spokesperson said: "Employment status is never a matter of personal choice and is always dictated by the specific facts. When the employment relationship does not accurately reflect the underlying reality of the relationship, the wrong tax is paid then we intervene to ensure the rules apply as parliament intended.

"While there can be many legitimate business reasons for workers being employed through their own companies, there are rules in place enabling HMRC to make sure people who provide their services in this way pay the right tax and national insurance."

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