by Brent Dirks
May 13, 2013
Sacrebleu! Purchasing an iPhone or iPad might be getting more expensive in France. According to Reuters, French President Francois Hollande will decide sometime this summer whether to impose a tax on smartphones and tablets to help fund cultural projects. The government asked a former television executive, Pierre Lescure, to come up with new ways to fund culture during the severe economic downturn. And according to the story, he pointed to technology as an answer:
Lescure's report said taxes on sales of smart-phones and tablets, namely Apple's iPhone and iPad and Google Android products, could help fund culture because consumers were spending more money on hardware than on content. The proposed tax would mirror fees already paid by television users, TV and radio broadcasters and Internet service providers to fund art, cinema and music in France, but which Google, Apple and Amazon are now exempt from payingRetuers also provided an interesting quote from a government official:
"Companies that make these tablets must, in a minor way, be made to contribute part of the revenue from their sales to help creators," Culture Minister Aurelie Filipetti told journalists.Yikes. Even though I’m currently disgusted with the state of government in the U.S., I’m glad politicians here have more sense (and business savvy) than their counterparts in France.