It's an interesting debate, and you can see the cultural differences between the American and British readers on this. Factor in the changing broadcasting landscape and the license fee is looking a little outdated. I'm from London, and twenty years ago, I had to study how and why the BBC was set up as part of my radio production course. I also went on to work for the BBC World Service for nine years. America has never had the British / European system of paying a license fee to watch content advertisement free. The whole concept is alien to Americans whereas us Europeans are far more used to it.
In the early days of the BBC, I could see the license fee system as being very good; however, fast forward 30 years, and we now have numerous companies providing broadcasting content in the UK. A couple of years ago, there was a loophole where if you didn't watch live TV, you could watch any BBC content on iPlayer without needing a license. That's since closed. Now, if I want to watch BBC content on iPlayer, I must have a TV license. However, I can own a computer, and as long as I don't log into iPlayer (you need an account now), I don't have to buy a license fee. For £150 a year though, I get access to a range of BBC channels, tons of content on the iPlayer set up and access to many BBC radio channels. I often listen to Scottish football games on Saturday on BBC Radio Scotland, and I often watch Scottish content on Scottish BBC via iPlayer. This Tuesday I'll be watching Wales vs Ireland in Welsh commentary O_o as BBC Wales are streaming the game free. All of this content is 100% advert free which is wonderful! Watching content without adverts is fantastic. Plus the BBC also provide quality journalism on TV, radio and the web 24/7. All this costs £12.50 / $16 a month.
Now having said all of that, Netflix has changed the game in many ways. I currently pay them £6 / $7.90 a month because they have a lot of Japanese content on it. I also never watch BBC 1 or BBC 2 nowadays. I use the web and radio a lot, but I do think £12.50 a month is a lot. More importantly, I don't feel I should be forced to pay for something that I don't watch. This license debate is getting bigger in the UK now, and my guess is the BBC will end up being a subscription based content provider via iPlayer in the next ten years. Interesting times. With NHK, my guess is once they go streaming, they'll be saying, if you have a computer, you'll need a TV license.
And now for coffee!
2 ( +2 / -0 )
Belgium are going to batter them!
1 ( +1 / -0 )
It's gone the other way in Venice. They want to stop the cruise liners due to problems with mass tourism and the pollution they create. "Venetians regularly protest against the huge cruise ships docking in the city, but mass tourism is not the only problem they bring – the toxic air they pump out is harmful to locals and visitors alike. "
2 ( +2 / -0 )
I still remember doing my A' Levels 28 years ago (the UK exams to get you into university) It was rather stressy! I never went onto university in the end; however, in 2013 I passed a masters degree. I got to dodge the BA :) Good luck all! It's great when that stress is over!
5 ( +5 / -0 )
I wonder (and I admit this is a looooong stretch) if filming in Japan, uploading the video and then making money from it is technically working on a tourist visa? If so, legit reason for a ban. Wishful thinking I know!
5 ( +5 / -0 )
I like the way people talk about "we should stop appeasing China." It'll never happen while thousands of western companies continue to get cheap products from China. I'm no Chinese fan but they've played a great card. Western companies are now addicted to cheap products and high profits. Not one of them will want that to stop. And that influences western government policy. That is the major problem. If you want to put pressure on China, then don't do business in China. That is the only way to stop China and that's not going to happen. China has us over a barrel.
6 ( +6 / -0 )
TH, you beat me to it lol! 86! Blimey!
-1 ( +0 / -1 )
People like you would have every poor person out on the streets surving without any welfare payments. My mum raised me all on her own in London. She was on welfare for the first four years of my life. We needed that money. Then she became a teacher and paid over 35 years back in tax. I was on welfare for five years, and then I got a job at the BBC in 2002 and have easily paid back in tax. There's nothing wrong with welfare and there's nothing wrong with single parent mothers. If I lose my job tomorrow, I'll happily claim welfare. Why? Because it's my own money. It's money I've paid into the system so I'm entitled to it. Not every unemployed person is scamming the system. I'm glad there's a system that doesn't throw people out on to the streets and let them starve like you seem to want.
16 ( +20 / -4 )
That's outrageous! Can you imagine putting a statue of a holocaust survivor on a London bus and then every time it drove by the German embassy it would play an audio message "and during the war six million Jews died." No, because that would be incredibly insensitive. Imagine being a Japanese citizen on that South Korean bus as it played the pro Korean audio message. It could encourage a physical confrontation. In my mind, Japan hasn't probably apologised, however, that's also partly America's fault. America were terrified of a communist Japan so they kept the right wing in Japan very strong. I do get that Korea are miffed about that, however, Korea has to move on. All they're doing is bringing up a population to hate. The more South Korea push an agenda for a war that is now over 70 years old, the more I become immune to it. Frankly, this is just embarrassing.
9 ( +13 / -4 )
In 2015, I came to Tokyo for 6 weeks. I had travel insurance. I then decided to stay longer. By then my travel insurance had run out. NO ONE would insure me, they all thought I was pulling a scam (always top up before it runs out.) I then stayed without insurance. I injured my leg playing football. My girlfriend rang hospitals. The first two refused to take me because I was foreign, one said they didn't take travel insurance. Finally we found one. I was terrified it would cost a fortune but the Dr cost £24 and the useless pain killers £30. Total cost with a bit extra £100. To me, it's a system thing.
0 ( +1 / -1 )
I've gotten out jury service three times in my life in the UK (thank gawd!) The thought of sitting in a court room for 8 hours a day for 135 days...oh my lordy..there's no way I'd be queuing up lol!
0 ( +0 / -0 )
I lived in Japan 3 years ago. I found a great music open mic in Shibuya. I had to stop going after a few visits. Every time I went, I came home stinking of cigarette smoke. It was horrendous. It was like stepping into the 90s.
2 ( +2 / -0 )