Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Your suggestion is interesting since I have for some time wondered if Americans would consider the offer value for money.

In effect, the TV licence works out at about US$20 a month for which we get.

BBC1 and BBC2 - general TV early morning to late night
BBC3 - 19.00 to 04.00, generally aimed at younger adults
BBC4 - 19.00 to 04.00, documentaries and "thinking" programming

CBBC    06.00 to 19.00, older children's TV
Cbeebies 06.00 to 19.00, younger children's TV

BBC News 24   24 hour news
BBC Parliament - Feeds from the Commons, reports on European Parliament, Lords, Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly

There are also 10 national radio stations and local radio (plus the BBC World Service which is outside the licence scheme).

There are no advertisements as such although program previews are used as fillers between shows. Also bear in mind that there is are a lot of repeats on the digital channels which mean for example, a show will be screened at different times over different days. The early am repeats are also used to broadcast programs with on-screed signing in BSL (Virtually all programs are subtitled using a digital system similar to close coupling) There are also cross-programming features like the "making of" documentary shown on BBC3 immediately after the week's Dr Who is shown on BBC1.

Is that worth a $20 a month subscription I wonder? One drawback I can see it that the BBC buys in programming from other countries like Australia and the USA so there may be problems in relaying those. They have also had trouble with contracts for actors to allow rebroadcasts etc and I do not know if the same would apply to a subscription scheme.

Some programs are also co-produced with US broadcasters (Rome for example) so again there may be problems over contracts. The good news of course is that you get to see these anyway. They are also revamping BBC America and including programs from the other nationally owned (but funded by adverts) network, Channel 4. Because it cannot subsidise from licence money, BBC America carries ads.

by Londonbear on Tue Jun 5th, 2007 at 08:17:40 PM EST
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