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  #321  
Old 02.07.2009, 10:14
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

Billag still would have to prove that a Windows user has Windows Media Player 9 installed. Nothing new here.
  #322  
Old 02.07.2009, 10:34
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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Billag still would have to prove that a Windows user has Windows Media Player 9 installed. Nothing new here.
does not matter nathu, the obligation is on the user to declare what they have or have not. if they suspect you have ANY means of receiving tv (windoze, linux, mac: your program of choice) they can insist you prove otherwise.

start here and perhaps navigate to the german version: http://www.billag.ch/web/fr/fragen_u...eraet_mfg.html

in practice PC reception is a bit of a thorny issue which is difficult to police. the law is on their side but i have never heard of anyone being prosecuted for using a PC to receive.
  #323  
Old 02.07.2009, 10:42
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

found this from 2007 too:

http://zattooblog.wordpress.com/2007...-billag-maybe/

may help or muddy things!
  #324  
Old 02.07.2009, 16:47
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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I guess because of data privacy the billag does not know when some is moving in. I'm not sure though...
eric
Not sure about that. I have moved a couple of times in Central Zurich and always had a visit from Billag within a few months. Interestingly enough I did not have a TV and when I offered to let the guy in to look around, it seems he wasn't allowed to. Maybe they have to visit with the police to gain access?

However, be careful as I understand the fine is pretty big if they do catch you.
  #325  
Old 02.07.2009, 17:00
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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Maybe they have to visit with the police to gain access?
this is true. not even firefighters or ambulance medics can enter without a police presence.
  #326  
Old 02.07.2009, 21:36
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

"Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?"

Yes you ****ing do. Like it or not. The game is rigged in the favour of Bill AG. I still have no idea why we must all pay for the generally mentally retarded shite that is broadcast here. Why should I subsidise stupidity?

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does not matter nathu, the obligation is on the user to declare what they have or have not. if they suspect you have ANY means of receiving tv (windoze, linux, mac: your program of choice) they can insist you prove otherwise.
True. Mr Bill AG visited me a few months ago. I foolishly opened the door when the outside bell was sounded. I refused to let him into my apartment. But I told the truth. I'm stupid that way:

"I do not watch TV. I do not listen to the radio. I have a TV. I use it for console games adn to watch DVDs. I have a DAB radio (which is still in its box, with cellophane wrapping). I have an internet connection. I do not subscribe to any kind of video or audio streaming service."

He got me on the internet connection. I complained that even in the UK the onus is on the thieving ****ers to prove you can receive signals and also do in fact watch TV. He replied with something like: "If that was the case, nobody would pay".

But I refer you to my statement above. I do not watch TV, nor listen to the radio, yet I told the truth, and now I must pay a large amount of money every year to subsidise a low quality TV equivalent of The Sun. Clearly his assumption is wrong. I told the truth, even though to do so is to cause me an unfair cost.

Rant over.
  #327  
Old 02.07.2009, 21:53
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

Just received the bill today 2nd July to pay before 1st September, who else sends you a bill two months early... They will get paid on the 31st August if I remember..
  #328  
Old 02.07.2009, 22:05
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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Just received the bill today 2nd July to pay before 1st September, who else sends you a bill two months early... They will get paid on the 31st August if I remember..
Like the UK equivalent, they are rent seekers.
  #329  
Old 02.07.2009, 22:05
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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They will get paid on the 31st August if I remember..
Which means they'll receive the money after the first and then late charges will kick in..
Pay it on the 28th to be sure they have it by Monday the 31st.

come to think of it I haven't gotten my bill yet..
  #330  
Old 07.07.2009, 07:40
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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He got me on the internet connection. I complained that even in the UK the onus is on the thieving ****ers to prove you can receive signals and also do in fact watch TV. He replied with something like: "If that was the case, nobody would pay".
My experience of the UK says different. I bought my first house in 1979, needless to say money was tight, and when my telly packed up I couldn't afford another. One year later the TV licence came due and I wrote to them telling them I no longer possessed a TV, but they refused to acknowledge that, and kept on sending me bills.

About 9 months after my previous licence expired, I did manage to rent a telly, which came with a paid for licence, and in spite of my previous letters, the *******s backdated it.

As I found out in that first house, rubbish reception was not an excuse, yet according to the local press they repeatedly refused to upgrade the local transmitter.

On another note going back to student days, I was theoretically allowed a black and white telly under my parents' licence, but it had to be battery driven, rechargeable batteries not allowed. Simply not affordable!

I honestly believe that Bill AG consulted with the thieving swine in the UK to see how to "maximise revenue".
  #331  
Old 07.07.2009, 07:45
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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Which means they'll receive the money after the first and then late charges will kick in..
Pay it on the 28th to be sure they have it by Monday the 31st.
The trick there is to pay with cash at your local post office on the last day, and guard the receipt jealously.

Unlike any other body in Switzerland I have come across, if you do incur that 5 francs surcharge for late payment, and pay on the original bill, they will add that 5 francs to your next bill.
  #332  
Old 08.07.2009, 10:44
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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I thought British TV was crap, and expensive.... its twice as bad here.
I'm not a big fan of british culture in general, but I think the BBC has some downright phenomenal programs and plenty of merely good ones. I have no idea what UK citizens have to pay for it, but I'm pretty sure it's worth it.

Swiss TV is expensive mainly because they are required by the government to produce shows in 4 languages, and the quality must be comparable. That means that people in German speaking Switzerland are subsidizing the TV programs of the 70,000 or so Romantsch speakers in Switzerland. There are also some excellent, well made programs on Swiss TV, naturally you need to be able to speak german to enjoy them. Netz Natur, Dok, Reporter, Kulturplatz are all excellent, and I enjoy Kassensturz every now and then because I get a huge kick out of consumer advocates tearing Cablecom a new orifice. The HB production of La Traviata was also quite well regarded internationally.

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I still have no idea why we must all pay for the generally mentally retarded shite that is broadcast here. Why should I subsidise stupidity?
This is pretty unnecessary and offensive. You don't like it, fine, but there's no need to refer to it as "mentally retarded".

Last edited by Principia Discordia; 08.07.2009 at 14:46.
  #333  
Old 08.07.2009, 11:55
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

SRG SSR have introduced quite a few new channels recently and created a systematic deficit out of incompetence or on purpose. They're already pushing for a higher budget but at the moment it looks like this may backfire big time.
  #334  
Old 08.07.2009, 19:42
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

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SRG SSR have introduced quite a few new channels recently and created a systematic deficit out of incompetence or on purpose. They're already pushing for a higher budget but at the moment it looks like this may backfire big time.
Although I enjoy the films they broadcast in the dead of the night (that's what a recorder is for), I don't see that they need so many channels going right through the whole night.

The vast array of soaps from the US must cost a fair bit. Do we really need so many of them?
  #335  
Old 08.07.2009, 22:40
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

Chillax people!

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It's remarkable how many people behave this way: imagine being so concerned about not paying a TV/Radio licence bill that you don't open the door unless you know who it is! I find that really weird, yet this isn't the first time I've heard this. Wow.
I never open the door when I *know* who it is But here's the deal: Billag guy came in the evening, within a year I had moved. At that time I had neither a TV nor a cablecom account. He was incredulous at first, but after a few times I invited him to come in and take a look, he convinced himself. Luckily he didn't even remotely start asking about radios =D

Just recently I found a Billag pamphlet in the mail illstrating the "advantages" of paying for the TV that I don't own. Apparently the guy went at it again but at that time I wasn't entertaining myself in the way he expected.

With the advent of broadband Internet, the Billag people (sounds gay, I know) began to argue that any connected PC is physically capable of receiving TV programs, hence liable for the tax. I don't think this is enforced yet though.

A few clarifications:
-When you purchase a TV or radio paying cash, the salespeople have no way of knowing your personal data and sending them to Billag. Please quit the Soviet spy paranoia!
-The Billag people are absolutely not authorised to conduct an involuntary search in your house (that means don't let them in even if they act assertively). Rather, they try to catch you red-handed by calling in at a time when your TV is most likely to be on. This happened to my friend, guy dropped in while like 3 TVs were blaring culture, one in each room. So take reasonable precautions, and don't be alarmed unless/until you see a cop in full assault gear standing outside yor door with a search warrant in his hand.
-You can cancel the registration 1 month after they caught you if you "sell" your TV. New registrations can't be retroactive (you "just bought it" anyway).
-You don't need to pay for TV at your second home (vacation home, "Wochenaufentalt", etc.) if you're already paying at your main address. This holds for the whole household, no matter how many TVs you got in total.
-Billag charges about 50 MCHF a year for its indispensable services.
-You don't have to pay if you own a TV that can only playback recorded shows, DVDs, etc. This law is all about catching a signal (whether through air, cable, or phone line) that carries some or all the Swiss channels.
-TeleTicino is a private channel like many others, it doesn't get much public subsidy, which mainly flows into the SRG SSR idée suisse treasury.
-The aerial plug is placed there by your landlord if you refuse to have cable TV etc (the cablecom signal), which comes at a monthly premium. Older buldings don't have cable, and the signal comes from the rooftop aerial/parabola, which is "free" (of course the cost is factored into the rent, but it turns out much cheaper than cable).

Finally, the unavoidable rant.

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There are some arguments for this tax in Switzerland:

* It's a sign of solidarity of the German speaking part of Switzerland to pump hundreds of millions of Francs in the French, Italian and Rhaeto-Romanic programs every year
* Without the tax, Switzerland's language regions would be insignificant appendices of the respective foreign markets and nobody would produce media for them
* The public TV channels have lower advertisement limits and an obligation to provide certain services like news

I'm not a TV junkie but at least I get some news and football games from the SRG...
* Half or more of the airtime is devoted to international sports/shows which are also provided by other channels.
* I won't get into the quality of the locally produced shows. At least in Ticino, these are more and more often focused on Italian culture/events instead of looking within the borders. A lot of foreign actors/reporters are hired for this purpose. So much for the independece from the "respective foreign market"!
* If you get the chance to check out the studios/offices of the public TV buildings, you will get a glimpse of how efficiently money can be wasted in the name of national unity.
  #336  
Old 09.07.2009, 12:39
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Re: Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?

  • There's an article in today's NZZ about the profile of SRG SSR channels researched by university Fribourg. "Very satisfied" with public radio and TV are 68%/63% (with private radio/TV: 71%/53%). There's actually slightly more information than entertainment on SF 1:
    • 35% information (politics, news, service)
    • 8% infotainment (sports, entertainment journalism)
    • 33% entertainment (fiction and non-fiction)
    • 18% other (trailers, filler, rest)
    • 6% commercial content (ads, teleshopping, sponsoring)
  • I can only speak for the German SRG TV. There's a format for regional news and not an abundance of news from Germany or Austria in the main format.
  • I've been in the Leutschenbach SRG/TPC studios and offices a few times. They have a functional look, probably not underfinanced,but no money wasters jumped at me. I think it's a strategical issue but they certainly don't have a silly playground like Google in Zurich.
Ok enough ranting for now , back to Billag!
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  #337  
Old 06.08.2009, 20:30
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Billag - I want to know everything!

I've been looking all over the place for answers to my television related questions, even calling Swiss friends, and no one seems to know the answers.

I understand that to have a TV I HAVE to pay the licensing fee. BUT, how much is it? I can only find ONE price chart on wikipedia and it said for private TV customers the cost per year is 292, 90 Sfr, and only valid for 2008. Is this true and is that price still valid?

Also, as of right now, I only receive 28 stations. 5 of those stations are home-shopping type stations. The majority of real stations are in German or French, even though I live in Ticino. 3 are Euronews, 2 are Eurosport. Call me silly, but almost 300 francs for TV when 17% of the stations are trying to sell me something and the other say 65-70% are in a language not of my region, and some are duplicate stations, seems a little...excessive, even for Switzerland. In Zurich, I believe about 50 channels are available including MTV and BBC. IF I decide to confront The Man and pay Billag, will a new spectrum of television channels open up to me? Or will I still be left flipping (or Zapping as it's called on the mediterranean side of the alps) between Supermodels doing gymnastics in stillettos and mini-skirts on RAI and an awkward, gay-themed daytime soap opera on TeleTicino?

Additionally, most people I know own a TV and do not pay Billag and have no intentions to either, nor have they been bothered by any bill collection service nor Billag inspector. Does the Billag-man only come knocking up north? Has anyone in Ticino had a problem?

If I decide to give in to the attractive Swisscom workers' persuasion and finally eat the apple that is BluWin TV, do I still have to pay Billag? Or is the ever-tempting "only five more francs per month" in addition to the 300 I'm already supposed to have paid?

Thank you all for your help,
Jon
  #338  
Old 06.08.2009, 20:31
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Re: Billag - I want to know everything!

Hi Jon,

Have you seen this thread yet? I think it should answer most (if not all) of your Billag questions.

Do I have to get a TV licence from Billag?
This user would like to thank MathNut for this useful post:
  #339  
Old 06.08.2009, 20:50
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Re: Billag - I want to know everything!

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I've been looking all over the place for answers to my television related questions, even calling Swiss friends, and no one seems to know the answers.

I understand that to have a TV I HAVE to pay the licensing fee. BUT, how much is it? I can only find ONE price chart on wikipedia and it said for private TV customers the cost per year is 292, 90 Sfr, and only valid for 2008. Is this true and is that price still valid?

Also, as of right now, I only receive 28 stations. 5 of those stations are home-shopping type stations. The majority of real stations are in German or French, even though I live in Ticino. 3 are Euronews, 2 are Eurosport. Call me silly, but almost 300 francs for TV when 17% of the stations are trying to sell me something and the other say 65-70% are in a language not of my region, and some are duplicate stations, seems a little...excessive, even for Switzerland. In Zurich, I believe about 50 channels are available including MTV and BBC. IF I decide to confront The Man and pay Billag, will a new spectrum of television channels open up to me? Or will I still be left flipping (or Zapping as it's called on the mediterranean side of the alps) between Supermodels doing gymnastics in stillettos and mini-skirts on RAI and an awkward, gay-themed daytime soap opera on TeleTicino?

Additionally, most people I know own a TV and do not pay Billag and have no intentions to either, nor have they been bothered by any bill collection service nor Billag inspector. Does the Billag-man only come knocking up north? Has anyone in Ticino had a problem?

If I decide to give in to the attractive Swisscom workers' persuasion and finally eat the apple that is BluWin TV, do I still have to pay Billag? Or is the ever-tempting "only five more francs per month" in addition to the 300 I'm already supposed to have paid?

Thank you all for your help,
Jon
Simple answer: You must pay Billag fees for radio and TV. No ifs, no buts.
  #340  
Old 06.08.2009, 21:04
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Re: Billag - I want to know everything!

Yes, thank you! As far as I understood though, it did not answer all of my questions.
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