Why do we keep paying for Eurovision when we will never win?

This is the recurring sentiment by loads of posts I've seen on Facebook and twitter, and they're beginning to grate a little. Most of the time people make stupid outlandish claims like we pay for 1/5th of the cost of Eurovision wherever it's held etc.

No, we don't.

To all these people complaining about “how much it costs” and “waste of license fee” etc. Do you actually know how much it costs? Or just basing your views on a biased opinion of the BBC or other unsubstantiated anti-Eurovision rhetoric?

The BBC doesn’t “pay for it”, but makes a contribution to the EBU which does. The actual costs of hosting the contest are largely borne by the hosting country (although obviously the BBC incurs costs relating to staff, travel, resources etc to broadcast it as they would any other event they sent people to)

The EBU is not just the Eurovision Song Contest - although it is what they’re best known for - but also develops technical standards for broadcast, some sporting events, classical music productions and a few other events.

The EBU is a lot more than Eurovision, and the cost of membership is relatively small (£300,000 per year or so, less than 1p for every license holder)

The BBC has to strike a balance in paying for content. Eastenders costs more than Eurovision, as do most sport broadcasts, and these don’t interest me at all. But I don’t criticise the BBC for daring to fund content I don’t watch - especially content with no further benefits such as cooperation in the EBU brings.

Eurovision is a tiny cost compared to so much other programming and one that encourages celebration of music, diversity, and equality. The EBU standing up to Chinese censorship this year is admirable, and I’m glad we’re a part of that.

But that doesn’t fit with the backwards self-absorbed “little Britain” attitude that’s prevalent these days I guess :(

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