Alarming as that figure is it represents a decrease of around 30% over the last four years, although we think that's due to "data manipulation" more than anything else.
Using the Freedom of Information Act we asked the BBC to provide the total number of TV Licensing complaints annually since 2008. We further asked them to disclose the number of complaints related to TV Licensing correspondence, the number of complaints about visiting officers and other "field operatives" and the number of complaints about TV Licensing call centre staff. The BBC's response is as follows:
The total number of TV Licensing complaints:
In 2008: 31,656
In 2009: 31,336
In 2010: 25,870
In 2011: 22,588
The number of complaints regarding TV Licensing correspondence:
In 2008: 1,693
In 2009: 1,960
In 2010: 767
In 2011: 385
The number of complaints regarding TV Licensing visiting officers and field operatives:
In 2008: 307
In 2009: 294
In 2010: 312
In 2011: 347
The number of complaints regarding TV Licensing call centre staff:
In 2008: 542
In 2009: 682
In 2010: 582
In 2011: 467
The number of complaints regarding the wording/tone of TV Licensing communications:
In 2008: 2,226
In 2009: 1,935
In 2010: 958
In 2011: 954
The BBC also confirmed that 1,531 valid WOIRA instructions had been received by TV Licensing since 2008.
Some of the data provided by the BBC appears contradictory, so we have asked them to clarify a few points. Bearing in mind they frequently screw up with FOIA requests it wouldn't surprise me if they revised their figures when pressed.
The full text of our request can be viewed here.