BBC iPlayer Could Introduce a Paid Service if Government Gets its Way

By Aatif Sulleyman on at

With The Man truly disgusted at the thought of common, licence-fee-dodging monsters like us watching TV shows for free on iPlayer, culture secretary John Whittingdale is busy thinking up ways to close the so-called ‘iPlayer loophole’. In a thrilling whitepaper set to be published next month, he’s reportedly outlined plans to ask the BBC to trial a paid-for iPlayer service.

He reportedly wants the corporation to try out a new offering, whereby users would pay to watch shows outside of their 30-day catch-up window. Currently, you can do this through the BBC Store, so we're not sure the broadcaster will be especially keen on the idea.

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Whittingdale would also like the BBC to introduce iPlayer passwords, which would presumably lock fee-dodgers out of the service. Right now, a message asking if you’ve paid the TV licence fee pops up when you select live TV on iPlayer, but you're not required to provide any sort of verification. By hitting the ‘Watch Now’ button, you can binge away. However, that's unlikely to be the case for much longer. [Telegraph]