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Lesson Transcript

Kellie: Make Sure You Pay Your License Fee to Watch British TV.
John: In this lesson, you’ll learn about the present perfect tense.
Kellie: The conversation takes place in Craig’s flat, and is between Lucy and Craig.
John: They are best friends, so the language they are using is informal.
Kellie: Let’s listen to the conversation!
Lucy: I’ve worked for the bank for seven months now and you’re still out of work and still watching daytime TV. Have you applied for any jobs?
Craig: I haven’t had much luck with job hunting, to be honest. I have applied to hundreds and had a couple of dozen interviews, but I can’t make it past the interview stage.
Lucy: Next time you have an interview, call me and we’ll practise. (pause) What is this TV programme you’re watching?
Craig: People raid their houses to find things they want to sell and then take them to auction. It’s a big waste of the licence fee, if you ask me.
Lucy: If you don’t like it, then why are you watching it?
Craig: I’m paying for it! I wish they would scrap the licence fee; think of how much money you’d save in your lifetime if you didn’t have to pay for the BBC every year.
Lucy: But if there wasn’t a licence fee, we’d have to watch adverts all of the time. I’m happy to pay the licence fee just so that the BBC stays advert free. Programmes like Doctor Who are just a bonus!
Craig: I don’t like that they take my money to make programmes and then don’t consult me on the programmes I want to see. I have paid my licence fee and I don’t care about old rubbish that people find in their attics and then sell onto people with more money than sense.
Lucy: Then stop watching it.
Craig: I can’t. I want to know how much money they’ll get for the painting they found hidden behind some boxes.
Kellie: Ah, the BBC. A great British institution!
John: It is, isn’t it? It’s the British Broadcasting Corporation and it’s a public broadcaster that has several TV channels and radio stations across the country, both national and regional.
Kellie: The fact that it’s a public broadcaster is very important, isn’t it?
John: It is! It means that it’s supposed to be impartial and serve the public with its choice in programming. There are no adverts, or advertisements, on BBC channels and they have to be very careful about product placement in their shows too.
Kellie: So, without money from advertising they have to rely on public money, right?
John: Yeah. Everyone in the UK that wants to watch live television, regardless of whether it’s the BBC or their commercial competitors, has to buy a TV licence. The price of this is set by the government, but the money collected funds the BBC.
Kellie: And some people aren’t happy that they have to buy this licence.
John: No, there are always calls for the licence fee to be scrapped and for the BBC to be commercial like the other channels.
Kellie: The BBC was the first major broadcaster in the world, wasn’t it?
John: Yes it was. It’s branched out a lot too and has services all over the world. You can watch BBC TV in many different countries these days and their programmes are broadcast across the world. The BBC has set the standard for broadcasting in many ways.
Kellie: That’s right. Now let’s move onto the vocab.
John: Let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson. The first word we shall see is:
Kellie: to raid [natural native speed]
John: to thoroughly search, often aggressively
Kellie: to raid [slowly - broken down by syllable] to raid [natural native speed]
John: Next
Kellie: auction [natural native speed]
John: a sale where items are sold to the highest bidder
Kellie: auction [slowly - broken down by syllable] auction [natural native speed]
John: Next
Kellie: waste [natural native speed]
John: without a purpose, to use carelessly
Kellie: waste [slowly - broken down by syllable] waste [natural native speed]
John: Next
Kellie: licence fee [natural native speed]
John: the cost of having permission to watch TV
Kellie: licence fee [slowly - broken down by syllable] licence fee [natural native speed]
John: Next
Kellie: lifetime [natural native speed]
John: the duration of your life, from birth to death
Kellie: lifetime [slowly - broken down by syllable] lifetime [natural native speed]
John: Next
Kellie: advert [natural native speed]
John: short for advertisement – also known as commercials
Kellie: advert [slowly - broken down by syllable] advert [natural native speed]
John: Next
Kellie: to consult [natural native speed]
John: to seek information or advice from someone
Kellie: to consult [slowly - broken down by syllable] to consult [natural native speed]
John: Next
Kellie: rubbish [natural native speed]
John: trash, garbage, waste material
Kellie: rubbish [slowly - broken down by syllable] rubbish [natural native speed]
Kellie: Let’s begin with “to raid”.
John: The traditional meaning of this comes from military raids, where a group of soldiers would launch a surprise attack on an enemy. It can be both a noun and a verb.
Kellie: How about in casual conversation?
John: It means to search for something that is needed, usually with a lot of speed, and it suggests that the thing you’re looking for is important. It’s often used to say that you’ve raided your bank account when you have to pay from something expensive. In the dialogue, Craig uses it to refer to someone raiding their own house to find hidden treasures.
Kellie: Next is adverts. We touched on this earlier when we talked about the BBC.
John: In other English-speaking countries they’re called commercials and it’s a shortened form of the word “advertisements”. It refers to any type of commercials that companies have to advertise their products.
Kellie: Commercials shown between TV programmes are most commonly called adverts in the UK so that’s why Lucy uses that term.
John: That’s right.
Kellie: Finally we have “rubbish”.
John: A very common British English word. In other countries it’s called trash, garbage or waste. In Britain, we almost exclusively use the word rubbish. It means any waste material that is thrown out, such as household waste like paper or food. Craig thinks that the items the people find in their houses for the TV show he’s watching are rubbish.
Kellie: It’s used in other phrases too.
John: Yep. We throw rubbish in a rubbish bag that is in a rubbish bin and it’s taken to a rubbish tip. It can also be used as an adjective to describe anything that we think is bad.
Kellie: Okay, let’s move onto the grammar.

Lesson focus

Kellie: In this lesson, you’ll learn about the present perfect tense.
John: This is used to describe actions that have happened at some point before now. We use “have” or “has” and then the past tense of the verb.
Kellie: “I have read the book”.
John: Yes, that’s it. It’s used for vague times, not specific ones, and shouldn’t be used with specific time expressions.
Kellie: Can you give us some examples of specific time expressions?
John: Sure! Specifying days, such as saying “yesterday” or “Monday”. Same with weeks and months – we can’t say something happened last year with the present perfect tense, because that is specific. There are also some clauses that are classed as specific time expressions.
Kellie: Like what?
John: “When I was a student”, for example. It’s referring to the specific time of being a student.
Kellie: So, the present perfect tense is more generalised.
John: Yes, it is.
Kellie: Let’s hear it in action.
John: Okay. Lucy said to Craig “have you applied for any jobs?” In that sentence there is “have” and the past tense “applied”.
Kellie: And no time specified.
John: No. She’s just asking in general to see if he has done it at all. Lucy doesn’t care if Craig applied yesterday or last week, she just wants to know if he has.
Kellie: Another example from the dialogue that uses the same structure is Craig’s answer “I have applied to hundreds.”
John: Craig is just confirming that he has applied. When he did so is irrelevant. Craig also said “I have paid my licence fee.” Again, this is an event that has already occurred, and when he paid for the license doesn’t matter.
Kellie: What if we do want to use a specific time?
John: As we discussed earlier, you can’t do that with present perfect tense. If I were to say that “I have read the book already”, that is correct because “already” is not specific. But if I said “yesterday, I have read the book” or “I have read the book yesterday” both of those would be wrong.
Kellie: Because “yesterday” is specific.
John: That’s right. To make it correct, you need to drop the “have” so it becomes “yesterday, I read the book.”
Kellie: Let’s run through one more example.
John: “I think I have met him before” is a correct use of the present perfect tense. “Before” is not specific, it’s a general word for the time preceding now. If I said “I think I have met him last week” that is incorrect.
Kellie: Because “last week” is specific. You would have to drop the “have” again.
John: “I think I met him last week”, yes.


Kellie: Okay. That’s all we have time for this lesson, so join us next time.
John: See you then!


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Saturday at 07:19 PM
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Hello Kibret,

Firstly a 'past principle' comes from a verb, eg. look, jump, think, throw, yell - and expresses a completed action. So when you are using 'have + past principle' or 'has + past principle' you will end up with a 'present perfect tense.' For example - "I have looked and 'I have thought,' 'She has spoken' and 'He has written.' The 'present perfect tense' is used for actions that occurred before now but a specific time/ day should not be mentioned. When you are using 'have + been + past principle' you will end up with a 'present perfect progressive tense.' For example - "I have been looking,' 'I have been thinking.' The 'present perfect progressive tense' is used for actions that have happened and are continuing.



Team EnglishClass101.com

Kibret Yohannes
Tuesday at 01:40 AM
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Hi, English class 101,

I am a bit confused about the difference between have + past participle and have + been + past participle

for example 1)I have worked hard 2)I have been worked hard

Could you please clarify me.

Kibret Yohannes

Englishclass101.com Verified
Wednesday at 11:16 PM
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Hi AungZW,

Nice to see you here :)

If you have any questions, please let us know.


Team Englishclass101.com

Wednesday at 04:33 PM
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