From BBC to NBT: Is it time to scrap the fee?


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Monetary Policy

The world in which the BBC operates has changed dramatically. Viewers and listeners have unlimited choice and are ruthlessly discerning. So, is it time to scrap the licence fee?

Today’s guest, the IEA’s Senior Academic Fellow, Professor Philip Booth, says that we should. Philip argues that the BBC funding model needs to be pulled into the 21st century. The UK has a long history of successful mutuals and co-operatives, Philip says, are popular with their members.

Such an ownership model for the BBC would be fit-for-purpose in the modern broadcasting world, detach the BBC from the state, and promote real diversity of corporate structures in the world of media.

A re-modelled BBC could better leverage its brand internationally and be a commercial success as well as perform other less-overtly commercial functions that its member-viewers value.

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2 thoughts on “From BBC to NBT: Is it time to scrap the fee?”

  1. Posted 15/11/2019 at 20:10 | Permalink

    Oh dear. Here we have more people giving their opinions on whether the BBC licence fee should be scrapped and not one of them is suggesting the problem that brought us here is that the BBC is not accountable to the people who pay for it.
    I mean, imagine you had a view that pork should be banned from dinner tables from Monday to Saturday. You might just ask the consumers for their views. Or that public parks should be open all night. You might ask the Council Tax payers for their views.
    But when it comes to the BBC no-one in the world of Think Tanks seems to think that it might be a good idea if the funding mechanism and scope of the service was decided by the people who have been paying for it.
    Let the licence fee payer elect the Board of Trustees. And let the Board of Trustees decide whether the service should be universal, subscription, reduced but keeping the bits not provided by markets, reduced but keeping the schit covered by the free market, increased, or scrapped.

  2. Posted 23/11/2019 at 19:02 | Permalink

    I wonder if you have listened to the pod cast because that is precisely what i am arguing.

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