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 TV programmes, or to watch or download on-demand programmes via the BBC iPlayer, then the law requires you to have a licence and we encourage you to buy one.

If you've just arrived here from a search engine, then you might find our Quick Guide helpful.

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Covert TV Licensing Detector Van Footage


A well-respected member of the TV Licence Resistance forums has just published his extensive video collection showing TV Licensing's persistent enquiries at his property.

Official Interview, not his real name, does not legally require a TV licence. He has been collecting CCTV footage of TV Licensing's visits to his property since 2010.

The hours of footage made public yesterday show that TV Licensing has conducted covert surveillance on his property - e.g. deployed a detector van - on no less than five separate occasions.

On one of those occasions the distinctive white VW Transporter van, with its trademark rattly engine and voyeuristic occupants, parked in the darkened street outside for more than forty minutes.

The property has also been the subject of numerous door-knocking goon visits. Official Interview is a fervent supporter of the no contact approach, so none of these visits have resulted in a response.

Official Interview's no contact stance makes it all the more bizarre that TV Licensing pays his property so much attention. 

It is no exaggeration to say that TV Licensing has invested thousands of pounds and hours of time in trying to prove the falsehood of TV reception there. Why would it do that? What's the legitimate public interest in spending thousands to pursue a TV licence worth only £145.50?

We can only assume that TV Licensing has somehow cottoned onto the fact that Official Interview is a vocal opponent of its regime. TV Licensing is desperately seeking non-existent evidence of wrongdoing, so it can mount a revenge prosecution.

We've seen such antics before, most notably in the cases of Michael Shakespeare and Steve Heather.

7 comments:

Ray Turner said...

The footage isn't quite in the same league as Eastenders, but it is interesting to see these vans in action.

I don't see how they can possibly work on modern LCD/LED/Plasma TVs, so I bet there's a laser microphone in that van. If I'm right, that would mean TV Licensing is eaves-dropping on private conversations rather than monitoring emissions from TVs...

Anonymous said...

Surely that amount of BBC/TV Licensing/Capita activity has got to be criminal harassment and intimidation?

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1997/40/contents

Anonymous said...

These vans presumably work by "detecting" light patterns, then making a guess as to whether the detected light pattern corresponds to the kind of light patterns a television might display. They may also detect sound.

I wonder though, how could such a device possibly distinguish between an illegal live broadcast and completely legal activity such as watching a DVD or playing a video game? Or for that matter non-television equipment that may emit similar light patterns as a television, for example lava-lamps or strobe lights?

Because surely, if the detection equipment cannot accurately distinguish between a television receiver installed or used for receiving live broadcasts and other completely legal activity that does not require a license, then its value as evidence of wrongdoing is zero.

It seems that the bar of determining guilt in these cases is set exceptionally low. Akin to dragging someone to court because they had their central heating on, heat was detected escaping from the property, and therefore the person is "obviously" guilty of running a cannabis farm.

Fred Bear said...

The detectors are only used to get search warrants. All that is necessary is to get a little technical mumbo jumbo in the search warrant application and an an ambiguous phrase or two (ie claim a '97% probability of a possible TV broadcast' being watched - note the word 'possible' in the phrase completely changes the meaning of the claim).

Perhaps a complaint to the Office of Surveillance Commissioners would be in order?

Anonymous said...

This is just it, I have a license because in order not to I have to get letter after letter and I have to agree to have someone visit my place "to check". I don't need my word to be doubted,and I don't need some debt collector trudging around my nice new flat looking for hidden TVs I don't own a TV and that's that, but I don't want to have to prove it! So I have continued the direct debit, they can have my 40p a day as long as they continue to make good programmes and as long as, if they make a profit, they consider reducing the cost for all.I don't need to be dealing with debt collectors at the door or via the post... end of..

Admin said...

Thanks for your comment Anon (22 July).
It is sad that you feel the need to pay for a TV licence you don't legally need, simply to avoid harassment by TV Licensing. There are many thousands of people, some very vulnerable, who are doing exactly the same - paying for something they don't need simply for an easy life.
Very sad indeed.

Unknown said...

Just caught one lurking outside my house in Northamptonshire, illegally parked half on the path half on the road. Registration VX09 V0A. He didn't hang about to chat.