To the last I grapple with thee

Ars Technica has been fed yet more patronising prolefeed by the godawful Ministry of Truth:

“We know the vast majority of people are law abiding and would anticipate those who need a licence for the first time will buy one. We have a range of enforcement techniques which we will use and these have already allowed us to prosecute people who watch on a range of devices, not just TVs.”

And I have sent an e-mail:

 

The BBC have fed to the media yet another scare story about detecting online TV viewing.

http://arstechnica.co.uk/tech-policy/2016/09/bbc-iplayer-bbc-id-postcode-registration/

Last week’s one, which I can’t be bothered to look for now, involved a mysterious green-anodised cylindrical thing about a foot long which allegedly can detect anything at all, at any range, by a secret method; doubtless from that same company that makes the bomb detectors so popular in Iraq.

Even though they now say they will require a login for the iPlayer, the absence of any application for which might be seen as evidence for the defence, I imagine that their login system will be hacked to cruft within eight seconds of going online; maybe seven.

Accordingly they will still have to act as they always have in assuming that every address – and increasingly, owing to continuous regulatory changes, every individual TV-capable device – must have a licence.

When they come here I would like if possible to have them brush me aside and enter the premises by force to search for equipment or software, naturally with admissible but covert recording equipment running at the time, for the greater glory of YouTube and my lawyer’s convenience.

Icing on this cake (“…and mix it up with Poison / ‘Til it turns a tempting green…”) would be a formal statement from you as my computer consultant (letterhead, invoice, etc.) to the effect that you have visited my premises on [date] and have inspected [number of] computers identified [thus] and confirmed that no BBC software of any kind is present on any of them.

My brief will of course present this (and that) in court as evidence that I am so intimidated by BBC terrorism that I feel obliged to pay money to a consultant to ensure that the BBC do not stealthily implant their wholly unwanted software into my computers in order to entrap me for gain.

In a civilised country (Trinidad? Vietnam? Burkina-Faso?) I might even be able to sue.

If as is remotely possible the BBC’s old school chums at GCHQ, having read all this, proceed to tip them the wink, then of course they won’t come, vindicating everything we said during the Cold War about ‘the maintenance of a credible deterrent posture’.

However if they are not warned (if, for example, GCHQ are also tired of the threatening letters) they may yet walk into my parlour, against which possibility I currently prepare.

The Ars article suggests that nothing will happen before 2017, though of course this could be just another helping of prolefeed from Minitrue.

Would you at your convenience oblige me with a quote?

 

Regrettably I have to say that on sober reflection I think that the algorithm which is cleverer than all the people at TV Licensing put together has probably already concluded, quite rightly, that my TV tax might just cost them more than £145.50 to collect.

Perhaps instead I ought to stage a spectacular event which captures the whole world’s attention, something like the Glastonbury Festival or the trial of Hillary Clinton, so that I can deny the BBC not just special media access but also any kind of ticket at all, obliging them to stand around in the rain outside waiting for some drunken vox pop to lurch into shot and give them something to broadcast.

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