I’m Also Proud of the BBC

As most of you know, I’ve been doing work for the BBC for a decade or so, but I’ve been a staunch supporter and fan of the Corporation since long before I ever had any connection to it, and I get quite nervous – and more than a little angry – when the knives come out for the BBC, as they very much have been of late. It’s particularly annoying since the Beeb, as a public service broadcaster which is (in effect if not strictly technically) more or less publically funded, is never in a position to defend itself, even against its most partisan critics.

So I thought I’d write something which expresses how I feel, and how I believe a fair majority of the British public feel, not that you’d ever know it from reading the papers (who, needless to say, have their own entirely selfish reasons for wanting rid of the BBC). I wrote this song, Proud Of The BBC, and we’ve been doing it on our current tour. The response the song’s been getting has taken me completely by surprise (standing ovations, people wiping away tears) and I’ve realised I may actually have started a bit of a “movement” here, so we’ve decided the song has to come out as a single, and that means making a video. – Mitch Benn

It’s sometimes hard to explain to non-Brits how central the BBC is to the life of our nation. I feel an attack on the BBC almost as if it was an attack on a member of my family, which is a bit of a problem considering the BBC is attacked constantly.

The BBC is under threat like never before, with talk of privatisation. The BBC can’t defend herself due to impartiality rules, and most other media outlets (especially those owned by Mr Murdoch) have their own reasons for wanting her destruction. The hope is that the public will be able to show our support by getting this song to chart when it is released at the beginning of November. I want the BBC to still be around for future generations, and not just another sad tale of something special that was lost.

Let’s do this thing!

4 comments to I’m Also Proud of the BBC

  • Squishy

    As a Brit now living in America I really miss the BBC. BBC America shows the occasional show (at least I get to watch Doctor Who) but it is, as you say, hard to explain how great the Beeb is to anyone who didn’t grow up with them.

    Quality, commercial free drama and documentaries and even proper non editorialised news are well worth the license fee. I have followed the news with dismay at the thought of it going away.

    Even in the age of cable and satellite tv with hundreds of channels I get the feeling that people would not realise what they were missing until it was too late.

    On a lighter note I have listened to Mitch Benn on the Now Show for years and always wondered what he looked like. It is weird finally putting a face to the voice.

  • Dril

    Heh, they’re the only channels worth watching. They do make some bad decisions occasionally, but then again, at least they’re not hopelessly corrupt, incompetent fools who just show crap after crap on a daily basis.

    Only Channel 4 can even come close on the documentary front. Their Richard Dawkins ones are pretty slick.

  • I heart BBC. Of course not everyone agrees. I still remember when they re-scheduled an episode of Quantum Leap due to the death of Dennis Potter in 1994 and brother was so angry he sent in a letter of complaint. He’s never liked the Beeb since.

  • Yarr

    I just wish the BBC would offer some type of license or payment plan to non-UK people (like here in the USA, and not the lame BBC America channel, which I can’t even get) for access over the web to their content. I’d happily pay for their science & nature type shows, some of the dramas, and mystery stuff as well. Not to mention a certain Doctor, Sara Jane and even that Torchwood bunch (if they ever make any more).

    I guess they do some interesting radio programming as well, although I think the only thing I’ve ever heard was The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, many many years ago, thanks to public radio here in the US carrying it.

    Channel 4 could do the same (I want Time Team please) and maybe ITV as well?