Petition to ‘save the BBC’ nears 120,000 signatures

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Petition to ‘save the BBC’ nears 120,000 signatures

A petition opposing the government’s plan to scrap the BBC licence fee in 2027 is nearing 120,000 signatures in a call to ‘save the BBC’.

The online petition on was set up after the announcement by culture secretary Nadine Dorries in the House of Commons on Monday, and has a target of 150,000 signatures.

It was announced that BBC funding would be frozen for the next two years, keeping the annual cost to customers at £159, before saying that the licence fee would be scrapped in 2027.

Stephen Regan, who set up the petition, called the plans “a disgraceful decision” and “an act of cultural vandalism”.

He continued: “We’re approaching the hundredth anniversary of the BBC, a monumental achievement, especially in the age of streaming and saturation. Other countries look at our public broadcaster with envy, as they should, and to call them an institution doesn’t do justice to the role it has in all our lives.”

On Sunday, Dorries stated on Twitter that the current licence fee settlement “will be the last” and “days of the elderly being threatened with prison sentences and bailiffs knocking on doors are over”.

However, she softened her stance in Parliament on Monday saying: “It is not a policy – we are announcing a debate and a discussion. The decision as to what the future funding model looks like is up for discussion.”

In response, the BBC stated that they were “disappointed” at the statement, adding: “The BBC is owned by the public and their voice must always be the loudest when it comes to determining the BBC’s future.”

Many have called the licence fee ‘outdated’ in the age of streaming and on-demand services being readily available on modern TV’s.

Tory MP Peter Bone said last week: “In this day and age it’s ridiculous to have a state broadcaster. It’s ridiculous that people are forced to pay a fee just because they have a television.”

One Gi Media reader claimed that they had already cancelled their licence fee, saying: “[We’ll have] no live TV, but [we] can watch through Amazon Prime, Netflix and a Fire stick which we had anyway…it’s not the money, it’s the principle.”

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