The BBC is a great institution they say. Unfortunately I don't have enough information or knowledge to debunk this statement.
To be fair, there are many great institutions in the UK. The Royal Institute of Navigation and the Royal Institution of Naval Architects are also great institutions I hear but quite unlike the BBC, I am not threatened with eternal damnation for refusing to pay money into their coffers.
My big bugbear with the BBC is the issue of the TV Licence Fee. Why do I have to pay a licence fee? In case you don't know, you can find the official answer here
In summary, the £145.50 pa fee allows us watch a wide range of free to air TV, radio & online contents. Compared to what Sky & Virgin charge, this is quite cheap. If any of those pesky economists are to be believed, Sky should have no customers at all as they are more expensive than the BBC. But eh, these things are hard to comprehend for us small minded folks.
The TV Licence fee also contributes to the costs of rolling out broadband to the UK population and funding Welsh Language TV channel (S4C) and local TV channels and allows the BBC's UK services to remain free of advertisements and independent of shareholder and political interest. I get this completely, we the mugged off payers of the licence fee, subsidise the broadband access of a segment of the population. And there I was thinking subsidies were a dirty and bad thing. Wrong again. Why is watching the BBC without advertisement such a big thing? Is this denying advertisement companies additional income stream. Is this a restraint of trade issue by the way? I hope some hotshot lawyer will address this issue one day in a court of law. And BBC independence, EXCUSE ME. Ask the Tory party and why they are on a massive vendetta against the BBC.