BBC Enforcement Policy - Interference

Nige Coleman made this Freedom of Information request to British Broadcasting Corporation

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

British Broadcasting Corporation did not have the information requested.

Dear British Broadcasting Corporation,

In a letter to myself which has no reference, regarding TV Licence conditions, from Dan McGregor on 16 August 2010, the BBC through the named agent above stated that,

"The condition above ["You must not cause undue interference to any other radio or television reception with your TV equipment"] was originally intended to guard against interference emanating from the unlawful 'pirate' use of broadcasting equipment. It was not intended that the condition would impinge upon the rights of TV Licence holders using television equipment that meet all applicable standards."

This is an absurd statement and wholly untrue; The use of pirate broadcasting equipment has fallen under the purview of the Wireless Telegraphy Act since 1949 whereas the TV Licence issued in accordance with the Communications Act (2003) is only for TV receiving equipment, this is abundantly clear from the Act (S363) which directly cites "TV receiver".

Will the BBC please explain why it has chosen to offer a Mickey Mouse interpretation of the licence condition (which has a basis in the Communications Act (2003), S364 (2)(f)) and thus attempt to escape the BBC's legal responsibility to enforce a condition under which all UK TV Licences are issued?

Please provide documentary evidence of the BBC's statement above - that the licence condition in question was intended for pirate broadcasters. Please elucidate fully on this matter.

If this documentation is not available (which is very likely since the assertion is untrue), please provide the BBC's full and complete policy for how it deals with a breach of this licence condition, as is happening at countless locations around the UK at this moment, including at my own location where it has become impossible to use some radio equipment due to the interference from a neighbour's licensed TV equipment.

Please also provide documentation for why the BBC has elected to not take my complaint seriously as is my right under the above cited TV Licence condition. Redact as necessary.

Please provide full and detailed documentation, including but not limited to; email communications, memos, telephone notes etc. of any communications and/or direction the BBC has received from Ofcom relating to the BBC's current stance of not enforcing the non-interference clause of the TV Licence.

Please provide any and all documentation relating to BT Vision, its known propensity to cause undue interference to authorised users of the radio spectrum and any policy documentation, internal decisions, communications, emails, telephone notes and memos which pertain to the BBC and its position of not taking enforcement action under the terms of the TV Licence condition cited at the head of this letter. Please include any direct communications with BT, as necessary.

Please include any documentation in which the BBC has determined whether BT Vision equipment qualifies as TV equipment for the purpose of issuing TV Licences due to the fact that it obtains TV programming via the internet which is now included in the licence fee.

Yours faithfully,

Nige Coleman

FOI Enquiries, British Broadcasting Corporation

Dear Mr Coleman,

Thank you for your request for information under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000, repeated below, which was received on 19 November
2010. We shall deal with your request as promptly as possible and, at
the latest, within 20 working days. If you have any queries about your
request please contact us at the address below.

The reference number for your request is RFI20101529.

Yours sincerely,
Information Policy and Compliance Team
BBC Freedom of Information
Room 2252
BBC White City
201 Wood Lane
London W12 7TS, UK
Email: mailto:[BBC request email]
Tel: 020 8008 2883
Fax: 020 8008 2398

show quoted sections

FOI Enquiries, British Broadcasting Corporation

3 Attachments

Dear Mr Coleman,

Please find attached the response to your request for information,
reference RFI20101529.

<<RFI20101529 - final response.pdf>> <<RFI20101529 - Disclosure Document
(question 5).pdf>>
<<SAR Application Form.pdf>>

Kind regards

Louise Wright
Information Policy and Compliance

BBC Freedom of Information
Room 2252, White City
201 Wood Lane
London W12 7TS, UK

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