Saturday 13 May 2017

BBC iPlayer Will Now Ask For A Password

BBC iPlayer

BBC iPlayer will soon require a password-protected account to access the online streaming service, the BBC has confirmed.

The new change will be implemented in a few weeks.

The broadcaster denied the mandatory account was a move to crackdown on licence fee evaders.

However, the BBC did admit that email addresses registered to an account on iPlayer could be used to identify people who use the online catch-up service without paying.

It clarified, "the information you provide us with can help TV Licensing ensure that people are abiding by the law and minimise licence fee evasion".

Starting today, BBC iPlayer viewers will be prompted by a notification that confirms the upcoming change.

"You'll soon need to sign in to watch," the warning reads, "It's quick and easy. And we'll keep you signed in."

The introduced of the obligatory login, which was first revealed last September, is designed to make the BBC "more personal and relevant to you", according to MyBBC launch director Andrew Scott.

Using a login for BBC services allows the online streaming service to tailor its recommendations to you, based on your previous viewing choices.

You can receive alerts about world events, topics and trends that you’ve told the BBC you have an interest in.

It will also enable people to start watching a show on one device, pause, and pick-up exactly where they left-off on another.

Video on-demand services like Netflix and Prime Video offer similar functionality.

MyBBC launch director Mr Scott said the BBC would not use "mass surveillance techniques or ask internet providers for IP addresses" to pinpoint those who evade the TV licence fee.

However, the BBC website does add that "We share some of your personal data with TV Licensing to check if you are using BBC iPlayer and to keep their database up to date."

Last year, the law changed – making a TV licence mandatory for those who watch BBC programmes on iPlayer.

Writing in an official BBC blog, My Scott said: "By matching email addresses we may be able to identify someone who has told us they don't need a TV licence while at the same time having signed in and watched iPlayer.

"So we will now use this alongside our existing enforcement techniques to help identify people who are watching licence fee-funded content without a licence.

"Both the National Audit Office and Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee have focused on the need to reduce evasion recently.

"The Government has also asked us to consider whether a verification system is required for BBC iPlayer so that people who are not paying the fee cannot access licence fee-funded content for free.

"This is something we’re continuing to look at."

If you already have a BBC account but haven’t signed in yet, you just need to sign in here. If you haven’t, then you can register for an account here.

At the moment, you won’t be required to sign in if you’re watching on a Smart TV.

But if your TV supports it, and you choose to do so, then you’ll be able to benefit from features such as starting to watch a programme on one device and picking up where you left off on your TV.



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