To borrow a phrase used by Jonathan Miller, television is a device for transporting the mind. Each year, the BBC voraciously consumes a revenue of £3.5 billion, derived from the licence fee in the UK, and transforms this into patterns of electromagnetic radiation. These patterns possess an information content which enables the viewer to see places and events without actually being there.
Sadly, £3.5 billion per annum is not, it seems, sufficient to embrace the £40 million required to maintain exclusive rights to the broadcast of Formula 1 in the UK. The BBC, of course, has other priorities, such as maintaining the eclectic, high-brow, intellectual content of their youth-oriented channel, BBC3.
The Formula 1 teams seem to have received the news in a remarkably phlegmatic fashion. They'll receieve an additional £1 million per annum, and they are perhaps anticipating that when Sky touches Formula 1, it will boost the sport in the manner that football was financially boosted with the inception of The Premiership.
Formula 1 fans in the UK already pay a £145 BBC licence fee, and will now be required to pay at least £500 per annum for a Sky Sports subscription. So it's bad news for the fans in a financial sense, but potentially good news for those who work in Formula 1, or wish to work in Formula 1.
I wonder, however, if the teams will run the gauntlet of another FOTA fans' forum in the UK...