More than nine out of ten people in Nottingham wrongly believe levels of TV Licence evasion to be around seven times what they actually are, new figures show.
TV Licensing quizzed shoppers in Bulwell about what they believed levels of evasion to be as part of a campaign helping people understand the law around the need for a TV Licence.
And when they were asked to choose whether evasion levels stood at either six per cent or 49 per cent, more than nine out of ten incorrectly went for the higher figure. In reality, evasion rates across the UK remain low, at six to seven per cent.
The results form part of a campaign in the city by TV Licensing called Reality Street – aimed at helping people understand the law around the licence. The Reality Street campaign features leaflets, posters and social media work, as well as TV Licensing’s community relations team teaming up with organisations in parts of the city.
As part of the campaign, TV Licensing also spent two days in the centre of Bulwell, talking to local people about their perceptions of evasion. Shoppers were asked several questions on facts about the city, one of which asked about evasion levels.
Mark Whitehouse, spokesperson for TV Licensing in the East Midlands, said: “The results are really interesting. Across the two days in Bulwell only a handful of people we questioned guessed the right figure when offered two to choose from, so many people believed the evasion rate to be much higher than it actually is. The intention with this campaign is to address people’s misconceptions around TV Licence evasion. Of course, the vast majority of people will need a licence to watch TV, and we were also able to help people who had questions about ways to pay for a licence and to offer clear advice on when a licence is needed.”
TV Licensing is working with a number of organisations in Nottingham to get the message across that evasion is actually very low, and promote awareness of when a licence is needed, including community groups, advice organisations, faith groups and retailers as part of its campaign.
A colour licence costs £147. A TV Licence is needed if you’re watching or recording programmes at the same time as they’re shown on TV, or watching BBC programmes on iPlayer, and can be bought online in minutes at www.tvlicensing.co.uk/midlands