Huh.  It seems there are still some retro holdouts against the relentless onslaught of “new and improved” technology across the pond.

More than 13,000 households across the UK are still using black-and-white television sets, according to the TV Licensing authority.

London had the highest number of monochrome licences, at 2,715, followed by Birmingham and Manchester, it said.

The number of licences issued each year has dwindled from 212,000 in 2000. A total of 13,202 monochrome licences were in force at the start of 2013.

A black-and-white TV licence costs £49 a year, a colour licence costs £145.50.

TV Licensing spokesman Stephen Farmer said: “It’s remarkable that with the digital switchover complete, 41% of UK households owning HDTVs and Britons leading the world in accessing TV content over the internet, more than 13,000 households still watch their favourite programmes on a black-and-white telly.”

(For those of you unfamiliar with the practice, Britain funds the Beeb through fees collected on television ownership via an annual licensing requirement.  And yes, television detector vans really do patrol the streets seeking out unlicensed and therefor illegal television viewing.)

I wonder what that figure would be here in the States?

I no doubt date myself by noting that we had a black & white teevee when I was a kid.   One day when I was about seven or so, I got the brilliant idea that I was going to change it into a color set.  So I found a can of orange spray-paint and got to work on the screen.   If memory serves, the Old Gentleman was so gob-smacked by the thinking behind my actions when he discovered my handiwork that I got off with a very light reprimand.  (That, and I seem to remember that the paint came off the glass relatively easily.)

MTMUPDATE:  Thinking back on the teevee of my yoot reminds me that I recently stumbled across a cable channel called FamilyNet, which has started running an evening lineup of WKRP, Mary Tyler Moore and Bob Newhart (both shows) reruns.  I used to be a huge fan of all of these.

The Mary Tyler Moore Show wrapped up when I was twelve and I hadn’t seen a rerun in 36 years.  All I can say is that I knew I liked her back then for a darn good reason.  Yow!

Advertisements