Taxing iTunes?

from the yeah-that-will-encourage-music-purchases dept

It's tax time again. As always, that means stories about what's taxable and what isn't -- with this year being the year to look at the taxability of online music downloads. It appears that with the success and attention Apple's iTunes has gotten recently, plenty of states are pushing forward with efforts to tax each song you buy. The normal rationale for sales tax is that the sales use up some sort of local resources, in terms of roads or infrastructure. That makes less sense when the product is entirely digital, but we've long since gone past any rationale for taxes, other than "the government wants more money." So far, it doesn't seem like this is actually impacting most online music shoppers, but the increase in price from taxes certainly could act as at least some incentive for people to go back to unauthorized file sharing (rather than paying the higher price for songs) -- which you would think the government wouldn't want.

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  • identicon
    Chris, 13 Apr 2006 @ 11:38am

    hahahahhaa.... i think that is a really stupid idea. it will deff push people to go back to unauthorized file sharing. the more ppl have to pay, the more they want to go unauthorized file sharing.......

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 Apr 2006 @ 11:43am

    No Taxation without representation.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Pissed, 13 Apr 2006 @ 11:54am

    Please purchase another 100,000 toilet seat for our government officials. ...and don't even get me started on the tollway authorities!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Willis, 13 Apr 2006 @ 12:00pm

    We already pay sales tax for iTunes in WA

    I'm pretty sure that I get billed for $1.08 for each song I buy off of iTunes ($.99 for song, plus $.088 for tax - which of course gets rounded up to $.09).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    iTunes Dude, 13 Apr 2006 @ 12:12pm

    iTunes downloads are taxed

    Whenever I download from iTunes they add tax to the download based on the credit card zip code.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Cornelius, 13 Apr 2006 @ 12:12pm

    To be fair, states can claim that's it their telecommuncations infrastructure you're using to download those songs. Or is the industry privatised in the US?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 Apr 2006 @ 12:25pm

    Well, it seems its time for off-shoring....

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 Apr 2006 @ 12:25pm

    Well, it seems its time for off-shoring....

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous cowherd, 13 Apr 2006 @ 12:33pm

    nothing surprises me anymore...

    I was just informed that I'd have to pay 'Use Tax' for purchases I made outside the state I live in... Even though the state had absolutely nothing to do with the transaction... the rationale is that online purchasing from other states, or even countries, damages the local business and use tax redistributes the wealth amongst the local businesses by contributing to the state coffers... and all this because I was an honest law abiding citizen and registered for a Sales Tax account so that I could pay the US government a sales tax for every sale I make...
    So, just wait, pretty soon, when the government realizes that it can't regulate or control online purchases or file sharing, they'll just levy a tax on every network packet you send AND receive... so, you'll start paying for all that spam you welcome into your inbox

    There's no limit to human greed

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 Apr 2006 @ 12:33pm

    share files illegally

    I'll never download a song legally again if the gov't taxes itunes!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      pooopstainzmcgraw, 13 Apr 2006 @ 1:05pm

      Re: share files illegally

      Well Well, I hear a bunch of rich white landowners getting pissed off about tea tax again (myself included). Maybe its time we go 1775 on their ass.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    jared & Carrie Campbell, 13 Apr 2006 @ 1:00pm

    they've been doing this for a while now

    there are several states in the US that have been taxing iTunes songs from the beginning.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Matt, 13 Apr 2006 @ 1:03pm

    But my state doesn't even have a sales tax!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Towelie, 13 Apr 2006 @ 1:12pm

    Tax in Arizona

    Everytime I buy a song from iTunes, I get charged sales tax, are you saying if I lived in some other state, I may not have to? Damn, I'm moving outta this freakin' state this weekend.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    RenderingSanity, 13 Apr 2006 @ 1:17pm

    Anyone remember that dude that claimed to be from the future and posted about it in a forum online? John something... He was either from the future or a very good guesstimator of what is to come. He described a future post-craplikethis where at least the US had realized that centralized anything sucks and had gone to a simplified but high tech colony like society....


    The more time goes on the more that sounds appealing to me. Not having to be concerned with big government crap because the big government just isn't there anymore...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    anarchistic government hating bastard, 13 Apr 2006 @ 1:19pm

    greedy corrupt government

    I completly agree! Off to the freaking harbor. The government is so busy spending money they don't have to make politicians wealthy that it seems our government is no longer capable of operating as it was designed. I feel that the only way to obtain the form of government that the US was intented to be is start over. What is the deficit now?? Three trillion?? Who is profiting? Now think of this, if I was a couple of trillion dollars in debt... I sure as hell wouldn't be spending more money, I would be in prison, or someone would assasinate me. Why is it legal for them?? The government "officials" are exactly like freaking toddlers in a candy shop.. It is time they got their spanking..

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Steve, 13 Apr 2006 @ 1:34pm

    Time to get a PO box

    In a no sales tax state.

    Better yet, I'll just make up an address, and it for my CC.

    As long as I pay may CC bill on-line, who will know?

    No more sales tax for downloaded products.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    txjump, 13 Apr 2006 @ 1:44pm

    never intended

    you are right. our founding fathers never intended for us to end up this way.

    they didnt want career politicians, they wanted real people in office. are there many people in office who arent politicians now?

    they were for states rights with a few exceptions. strongarming funding and superseding state laws has become more prominent.

    they wanted to avoid mob rule where injustice was carried out on people with a small voice. lobbist groups and campaign funding have ruined this concept.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymouse Coward, 13 Apr 2006 @ 3:38pm

    So they are only going to tax US residents? I will just use my overseas identity then. Stupid politicians are always out to ruin our fun.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 Apr 2006 @ 4:07pm

    our gov. will try to get money whenever they can. after all, we need to pay for their 2 million dollar houses and fancy cars right?.............

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    pdog69tx, 13 Apr 2006 @ 4:34pm

    That freakin' figures

    As if the gov't doesn't have enough to worry about with everything and all, they are worried that downloaded songs may need to be taxed? What a crock of sh%*. As far as I can remember the gov't is always looking to get something for nothing, and this is another example. I agree with the article that if this crap is passed anywhere, all it will do is drive people back to the "illegal" downloading and cause to have a NAPSTER event all over again. Leave the MP3 world alone. The money we pay per song (.99 for I-Tunes) is more than enough to pay who needs to be paid, and I don't remember the gov't being in the recording studio when the artist cut the song.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 Apr 2006 @ 5:16pm

    To all those out there who think that it is time for this, and countless other taxes, to go, there is a plan in place that's gaining power. It has several high-powered politicians on board, and is gaining new members every day. Fair Tax aims, among other things, to eliminate the IRS and income tax completely, and move to scaled-back sales taxes... Vist: http://fairtaxgroups.com/index.php?PHPSESSID=f48f8a7a8cdc4e29d1d569073b7509ef&topic=454.0

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    BlackCow, 13 Apr 2006 @ 5:21pm

    pssh

    "yeah!!!! let's dump all our ipods in the harbor"
    pssh how bout just dont buy iPoods, im much happyer with my creative studios MP3 player. (apple sux)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    No One Inparticular, 14 Apr 2006 @ 5:56am

    I am listening to Rush Limbaugh on my Apple Ipod while surfing on Microsoft Internet Explorer and I'm going to go to Burger King in my Hummer in a few minutes but take the scenic route.

    Totally off topic comment but I believe that could possibly be the most evil statement ever created haha...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Chris, 16 Apr 2006 @ 6:22pm

      Re:

      well i am downloading music, doing some stuff for my online history class and reading my emails while going down I-10 at 80+ mph. oh and reading techdirt.( i'm not driving) :)

      regards,
      chris

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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