b3ta.com qotw
You are not logged in. Login or Signup
Home » Question of the Week » Sticking it to The Man » Post 759706 | Search
This is a question Sticking it to The Man

From little victories over your bank manager to epic wins over the law - tell us how you've put one over authority. Right on, kids!

Suggestion from Sandettie Light Vessel Automatic

(, Thu 17 Jun 2010, 16:01)
Pages: Popular, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

« Go Back

TV Licence
This topic has been mentioned before recently, and it reminded me of my own experience with the maggot-brained window-lickers that make up the TV Licensing Departments finest workers.

As students, my flatmate and I didn't have a TV. Being at uni in central London, but living way out in Zone 4, we got back home so late at night that we couldn't be bothered to keep up with who said summat bad to Shania so Peggy Mitchell got huffy and demanded Grant did something about it but he was too busy having a feud with Simon who'd knocked up his ex girlfriend and had called her a slaaaag.

But I digress.

We received a couple letters saying "we don't have a record of you having a TV license, please get one NOW if you have a TV". Since we didn't have a TV, we ignored the letters.
Then we started receiving more strongly-worded ones saying "it is an offence to watch TV without a license". I strongly resented the thinly-veiled implication that we, potential upstanding leaders of tomorrow, would be so dishonest as to steal television programmes. So I replied to them confirming that we didn't have a TV.

But the letters kept on coming, in increasingly vibrant shades of red. "It is an offence!" "TV inspectors are coming to your area soon!" "Our special van is outside your house right this minute monitoring all the filthy free television you're stealing from the BBC, the Queen and all the starving orphans. You soulless bitch". And so on and so forth. I replied a few more times, I phoned them and spoke to a disinterested drone who promised to "update the records" as soon as she located her last, diseased braincell. I even tried emailing them.

However, the final straw was when we received three letters in a single week. I wrote to them, saying that I have already replied several times confirming we didn't have a TV, that they had ignored all my correspondence, and if they continued to harrass me in this way I would have no option but to involve my legal representative, and they should jolly well compensate me for the time and money I have spent on communicating with them. The fact that this was hand-written in felt-tip ink on music stave paper (it was the only paper we had in the house) made it slightly surreal.

I got a letter three days later apologising for all the inconvenience, saying they'd most certainly updated their records now, promised me the lives of all their first-born children etc. And in compensation, paperclipped to the top of the letter was a stamp. A single stamp. A single, second-class stamp.

Yeah, I really showed them.
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 11:16, 6 replies)
We had a mass panic in the halls of residence when I was a student as a "TV detector van" had been spotted on campus. Needless to say, no-one had bothered with a licence, as we were only there for nine months. So took our chances - The first reminders were burned in pumpkins on Halloween, the second stayed in a pile in the common room etc.

So when the site of a ford transit van with an aerial poking out of its roof appeared mass hysteria arrived, and portable TV's were removed into wardrobes and hidden with piles of pants.

Worst thing about this story is that it wasn't the TV detector van at all, it was some cretin from working lunch who'd come to do a thing about whether student fees were a good or bad idea (Now I'm showing my age!)
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 11:28, closed)
The TV detector vans do not exist
...was also confirmed by a chap I won't name who works for the BBC.

I think the enforcement officers do exist though.
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 11:47, closed)
The enforcement officers exist
...I met one when I was helping a friend move house. He came to check up on the licensing situation, got the explanation (one property empty during move) and went away satisfied with my friend's response.

He was less satisfied with my parting shot of "Of course, I don't have a licence at home and I've got lots of TVs - but you don't know who I am, do you?".
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 12:39, closed)
The vans exist, or at least they used to
they just don't work the way they like people to think they do.

Think about it, what's going to be the easier option? Use complex electronic equipment to try and detect exactly where in a building a TV signal is coming from, what channel is being watched, and all the other crap they claim to be able to do (bearing in mind that these claims have been made in the 80s)? Or just have a database of which addresses aren't licensed, and visit them in a transit with an aerial on the roof?
(, Sat 19 Jun 2010, 14:28, closed)
Working Lunch?
It wasn't Adrian F*cking Chiles was it?
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 11:56, closed)
Our Uni was much the same.
Of course the announcement that went out on student radio advising that TV license inspectors were around, that caused a campus-wide panic in the halls of residence, was absolutely nothing at all to do with me.

Not at all, honest!
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 11:38, closed)
I moved into a brand new property last year
and had about 6 months worth of death threats from the kind TV people in my post box! not bad for someone who had lived there 5 minutes
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 12:22, closed)
Nothing like a hint of legal action
to shut the buggers up. Andy A whose parents came from Cyprus tells me of the persistent letters from a magazine co. demanding payment for a subscription supposedly owed by his non-English speaking and dead grandmother. This went on for around three years until a pal finally passed his bar exams and joined a rather well known Sydney legal firm. One of his first letters on the firm's letterhead was to the magazine on Andy's behalf. No more demands were received.
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 13:18, closed)
Watch out though, the offence is WATCHING a TV without a licence.
You don't need to be the householder.

So if, say, a girl of 16 is babysitting at her mum's friend's house for a spot of pocket money and the people come round to check, SHE is the one caught watching the box if the house owners don't have a licence so SHE will be prosecuted.

I worked at the courts a couple of years ago and this exact thing happened. Poor girl was fined several hundred nicker and costs and was distraught.

No question of her being dealt with in the juvenile court, either, although I'd have thought that was her right.
(, Fri 18 Jun 2010, 21:25, closed)

« Go Back

Pages: Popular, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1