[SOLVED] BBC iPlayer only works in the UK. Sorry, it’s due to rights issues

Are you getting an error code trying to watch something on the BBC iPlayer? 

Something such as this:

BBC iPlayer only works in the UK. Sorry, it's due to rights issues.

The reason you're getting this error is because the BBC iPlayer platform is only available to those residing within the United Kingdom, including England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Even British holidaymakers heading outside the country can't watch the iPlayer on their vacation as they're blocked and get the same error.

bbc iplayer only works in the uk sorry

The BBC tries it's best to block overseas access to it's service. This is due to the complex licensing that surrounds most TV shows. One company owns the rights to one geo graphical area, and another owns it within another country. Prior to loading any TV shows on the iPlayer website, they check your IP address (your unique internet access) and determines where you live, before granting you access.

If you're outside the UK -each IP address includes a location component, you'll get:

BBC iPlayer only works in the UK. Sorry, it's due to rights issues.

Reasons Why You're Blocked From iPlayer:

  1. You're located in New Zealand, not the UK
  2. You are using a free VPN -notorious for getting blocked
  3. Your VPN is leaking your DNS, which is common on poor VPN providers.

How to fix the error and unlock the BBC iPlayer NZ:

  1. Get a reputable VPN such as PureVPN
  2. Download and install software
  3. Use an Incognito window to prevent caching
  4. Create a NEW iPlayer account
  5. Start watching great content. 

Basically, most free VPN providers suck and this is the issue 99% of the time. Kiwis have known for years they can't get the iPlayer, but they don't want to pay for a premium service that will guarantee them access. There are over 34 reputable, tried and test providers on our website that work with the iPlayer website. 

It's important to use Incognito after getting setup to avoid any caching that may be displaying or revealing your old entity to the iPlayer website. A new account is also a good option incase they are logging your old IP on your old account. 

Why does the BBC block users from overseas?

It would seem strange that a website would block people that want to watch TV shows right? Well the BBC is a free to air broadcaster that collects revenue from what people in the UK call a TV license.

Everyone that owns a TV in the UK must pay a small fee to use that TV for free to air each year, often collected in the price of new televisions but also as a bill sent to your home each year. In return they don't display those scummy ads every 10 minutes that we have on Freeview here in New Zealand. Plus they have guaranteed money to invest in world famous broadcasting and news.

So in return, they legally have to ask if you have a TV license when setting up an iPlayer account and in theory if you click no, they have to block you from the website, however there is no way to check or enforce this, a bit like confirming you're 18 on a liquor store, I'm sure we all tick yes, even if we're 17. 

Further with licensing for shows, these often are only for UK viewers, and those rights are sold to highest bidders in other countries such as NZ. The problem is, most of the time those rights don't make it to NZ as no one is interested in buying them, or the companies that do buy them end up not actually using them on the TV, causing people to go looking elsewhere. 

While the BBC would happily welcome you to watch if they could, they can't as they only have local broadcasting rights. So they block overseas IP addresses and known VPN providers from accessing their platform. You need a high quality UK based VPN provider to fool the website into thinking you're a local rather than another VPN user.

The only way to achieve this is by using residential IP addresses rather than known VPN IP addresses and this is why the big companies thrive, as they can rotate IP addresses daily, staying one step ahead of the one computer guy at the BBC who's paid to block these IP's - in theory they probably can't be bothered but are pressured by rights holders to block overseas visitors, hence the message you may have received on the screen. 

How do I get a UK IP Address for the BBC iPlayer?

The easiest way which takes literally 2 minutes is by using a reputable VPN provider. Shy away from free ones and those Chrome plugins that claim to unlock websites, most are a scam. Others are riddled with adware and spyware which will screw your machine. 

Reputable VPNs cost money, but so does most things in life, there really is no such thing as free in the world we live in. Free often comes with a catch, such as ads or premium upsells to support the free version.

Quick Guide - Best VPNs for BBC iPlayer

  1. PureVPN - High quality, no logs provider offering torrent friendly servers in 142 countries worldwide, at affordable prices. 
  2. ExpressVPN - Provides excellent speeds and some of the best Netflix servers, ideal for those heavy demand streamers.

This content doesn't seem to be working. Try Again. Error Code - How To Fix?

This error occurs if your computers VPN connection drops the connection while loading the content, or trying to fetch the program. Check to ensure your Internet connectivity is alive and not dropping. Further this error can also mean the VPN is being detected, or the website itself is actually experiencing issues -try Incognito browser. 

BBC iPlayer TV programmes are available to play in the UK only. Find out why. If you are in the UK and see this message please read this advice error code, how to fix?

If you are getting this error message after installing a reputable VPN provider, be sure to clear your cookies, cache and temporary internet files. Then open BBC iPlayer in Incognito mode and create a new BBC iPlayer account before trying again. If you continue to receive this error message please try a different device in your network. If the issue continues, reach out to your VPN support team for guidance. They can likely issue you a new IP address or alternative server which will resolve the error code. 

If you're in the UK and getting this error code, be sure to disable your VPN. If you're not running a VPN and using a work or corporate connection, it's likely been blocked by the BBC as too many people are using the IP address to stream. Contact the BBC directly.