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To ignore the TV license people?

(276 Posts)
Fellia Tue 12-Dec-17 12:08:39

So the TV licensing people knocked on my door at half 8 on Saturday morning.

I was in bed and didn’t answer but I’m expecting them to come back.

They put a red letter through my door saying I am watching tv illegally and they can “help me watch legally.”

I’m finding this absolutely ridiculous. I do not watch tv apart from Netflix/DVD’s and the one tv I do have isn’t connected to actual channels (sorry, I don’t know how to explain this properly as I don’t know much about it)

But the fact is I do not watch regular TV. I have written to them, called them numerous times to explain this and I had a visit last year (at a different property) where I also explained this.

AIBU to just ignore them if they keep coming to my door? I’m sick of being harassed by them for no reason.

snash12 Tue 12-Dec-17 12:11:44

Open the door next time and tell them.

If you never watch live TV or download from BBC iPlayer then you don't need a license.

Theresnonamesleft Tue 12-Dec-17 12:11:49

Treat them like any other unsolicited call or visit from a salesperson. Not interested and close the door.
There are a few determined ones. But again, remember you don't have to talk to them. You don't have to confirm your name and you really, really do not have to let them in,

Theresnonamesleft Tue 12-Dec-17 12:12:29

Oh iPlayer you do need a license for.

Fellia Tue 12-Dec-17 12:14:13

Yes you definitely need a license for iPlayer.

Last time I opened the door they were very accusatory and wanted to come in. I really don’t want to go over it all again.

Zampa Tue 12-Dec-17 12:15:56

You can register as having no TV or use for a licence with the licensing body. We've done that and had no further hassle.

ohfortuna Tue 12-Dec-17 12:17:21

ignore them they are bullies with no real Power

HighwayDragon1 Tue 12-Dec-17 12:19:40

I remember TV licence people sending a guy over, he was enormous built like a brick shit house. He said he "knew" I was watching TV and could be prosecuted etc I replied I wasn't and he was welcome to check. He physically stepped back and changed his tack immediately. He had to duck through my doorway to come in, gave a cursory look around and said he was sorry to bother me. He did change a lightbulb for me before he left though grin

Fellia Tue 12-Dec-17 12:20:36

Highway that’s amazing 😂

ohfortuna Tue 12-Dec-17 12:28:01

I have never ever had a TV licence I just get the occasional letter and I fill in the form to say don't watch TV

Roomba Tue 12-Dec-17 12:28:32

I've had one of these letters recently. I filled in the online forms to say I didn't need a licence about two years ago and heard nothing from them until the letter arrived. So I'll have to fill in the form again to stop the process for a while.

You don't have to answer the door to them and you don't have to let them in without a warrant. To get a warrant requires them to show a judge they have evidence of you watching TV, so it's unlikely they'll turn up with one out of the blue.

It really annoys me that in the UK you are assumed innocent until proven guilty and the onus is on the crown to prove guilt with evidence. Unless it's licence evasion, when it is assumed you are guilty unless you go out of your way to prove to them that you aren't watching TV.

Fellia Tue 12-Dec-17 12:30:02

I know it’s so annoying.

Why is it just presumed that everyone has a TV. There’s more to life!

RestingGrinchFace Tue 12-Dec-17 12:31:48

Treat them like they are the criminals! Open the door and in your best 'posh' voice say "Who do you think you are?! I have told you again and again I do not watch television and don't want to buy your subscription! You have absolutely no right to harass me like this or attempting to enter my home without a warrant. Leave now and don't come back. If you do I will be reporting you to the police for harassment!"

Pickleypickles Tue 12-Dec-17 12:34:58

I thought it was standard if you tell them you dont have a tele they come roubd and check?

Neverender Tue 12-Dec-17 12:35:55

Declare you don't need a licence and then declare 'WOIRA'. It's the withdrawal of the implied right of access, then they can't even knock on your door. Done!

CheekyFuckersAreEntertaining Tue 12-Dec-17 12:36:58

It's appalling that this is still legal. One must prove that they don't use a service from a company in order to not have to pay them?

Also it's infuriating that we cannot opt out of having BBC available to us when we take out a television service such as Sky or Virgin. Advertisers pay for the majority of channels available to the consumer these days yet we have to pay almost £150 for the privilege of having BBC channels available whether we want them or not. Disgraceful.

I had a massive argument with TV licensing a few years back when my stepdad/boss at the time picked up a new TV on my behalf as a gift for my BF and was hounded by TV licensing for months. I was calling them every other day to say stepdad had a TV license only it was in my mums name. They would not check his address for a license but chased him personally. I wonder how many households have paid more than once because of tactics like this?

Buddyelf Tue 12-Dec-17 12:44:35

I have found the TV licence people extremely threatening. I remember them sending me a letter after I had renewed - apparently my renewal and the letter dates crossed and the wording was really aggressive and threatening. I called them up and lodged a complaint about the language they use in their communications.

ohfortuna Tue 12-Dec-17 12:46:48

TV licensing just relies on the natural tendency of most people to defer to anything that appears to have authority
They used to send out letters that were worded to sound like a summons to court
Lying scheming bastards

MissTeri Tue 12-Dec-17 12:46:52

What if you have a TV but don't use it for watching regular TV? Can they still insist that you get a license? My son uses ours for his Xbox and Netflix but other than that it's not used, I begrudge paying those scamming thieves but I do it because they hauled my arse to court over it before when I was young, naive and too mentally unwell to argue my case!

MissTeri Tue 12-Dec-17 12:49:07

They used to send out letters that were worded to sound like a summons to court - Wait ... so what I had wasn't a summons??? I went to court the morning I was meant to and the TV bloke was there (as were several other non-license payers) and I stumped up for a license that morning and he 'let me off'!! As I saw, I was very mentally unwell at the time (bipolar disorder) and I was frightened and just wanted them off my back. Makes me furious to think about it now the bullying fuckers!

Fellia Tue 12-Dec-17 12:49:17

Teri I do have a tv but like you only use it for Netflix / DVD’s.

You don’t have to pay it if you don’t watch “live tv” or anything on bbc.

You even need one if you watch iPlayer or live tv on your phone.

PeaPodPopper Tue 12-Dec-17 12:49:41

We haven't had a TV at this address for over a decade, nor do we watch iplayer or any other kind of service such as Netflix.. However, this hasn't stopped the Licence people from harrassing us with a letter every month for nearly 3 years now offering a variety of threats etc, and we also had a visit a few weeks ago.

During this visit I was asked why we didn't reply to their letters to inform us of the above. My reply was that even if we did, it is stated on their letters that 'they may visit us anyway', so what's the point. I have no intention of wasting my time and money playing stupid 'letter pingpong' with them.

I then asked the Licence rep if she had a licence to sell alcohol.

'No because I don't sell it' came the reply.
'Have you informed the relevant association of this fact?' I asked.
'Well er no, there's no need to' she replied.
'Exactly' I said, and closed the door.

If they try to say they have evidence of you watching iplayer, ask them for it, as they will need to know who your BB supplier is, I.P. address and dates and times you were supposed to be watching it.
As this should be under data protection I imagine (not sure on the finer points of this) that they would need to have some kind of search warrant. Without all this, they're stuffed because it means you don't watch it and that the 'proof' they're waffling about is made up nonsense.

I really loathe this bullying culture, and the fact that they refuse to believe you can live a life without watching constantly repeated crap for and ever increasing cost.

I have a fabulous life, they evidently do not.

PersianCatLady Tue 12-Dec-17 12:51:16

We don't watch live TV bug I pay for the licence any way because I just can't bear the hassle.

ohfortuna Tue 12-Dec-17 12:52:14

It might be true that you need a licence if you watch iPlayer however it is perfectly possible to watch if you don't have a licence and the BBC have no way of knowing whether you watch it or not
they're just full of bullshit, they can't prove you watch telly
and it's up to them to prove it rather than up to you to prove that you don't

Chrys2017 Tue 12-Dec-17 12:53:08

What if you have a TV but don't use it for watching regular TV? Can they still insist that you get a license?

As long as your TV is not connected to an aerial or receiving device (satellite etc) you don't need a licence.

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