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France Wants to Tax User Data Collection
In Order to Get Hands in Google Coffers
by Karl Bode 08:38AM Monday Jan 21 2013
Just like European monopoly telcos, France's government is jealous of the massive money being made from companies like Google on user data, and is now contemplating a tax or toll on American companies. Unlike previous taxation attempts that focused on taxing advertising, the New York Times says a new French proposal would impose a levy on the collection of user data. "We want to work to ensure that Europe is not a tax haven for a certain number of Internet giants," insists digital economy minister Fleur Pellerin.

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FFH
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Just the usual French attack on US companies

France has been fighting this war against US multinationals for some time. The primary tool against US tech companies has been monopoly lawsuits. The main victim there was Microsoft, and Intel also in the sights of French/EU regulators. They tried that tactic against Google, and still are, but so far Google has beaten back the monopoly attacks. They then tried privacy regulation as the next tactic against Microsoft, Apple, Google, etc. That battle is still ongoing. The tax the collection of privacy data is just a corollary of the privacy attack. But let's not forget that all of the above is just more of the economic warfare France and the EU had waged against US multinationals for many years.
--
A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasury.

ArrayList
netbus developer
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Re: Just the usual French attack on US companies

Why the hell should France not be able to tax what they want to tax? That is a right of any government.

FFH
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Re: Just the usual French attack on US companies

said by ArrayList:

Why the hell should France not be able to tax what they want to tax? That is a right of any government.

But as signatories to international WTO trade agreements and also to bilateral trade agreements with the US, certain actions are out of bounds. Can they do it anyway, sure. But then they open up themselves to sanctions on trade and import duties against their own companies - like huge import taxes on wines, clothing companies, etc.
--
A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasury.

ArrayList
netbus developer
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Re: Just the usual French attack on US companies

no complaints here.
elefante72

join:2010-12-03
East Amherst, NY
Because France is part of the EU, and thus GOOG "recognizes" a vast sum of their earnings back to the UK where is pays much lower taxes. Notice how GOOG is buying a $1b plot of land in the UK to build their EU HQ. Interestingly enough they are doing that SO they don't have to repatriate the earnings back to the US and pay US taxes on it.

It's all a shell game....

Blame it on the EU, not GOOG. They are just playing the game. France is trying to create a toll booth before exiting France, which is actually a great way to break up the harmonious EU which is supposed to be borderless

While I agree that if revenue comes from France should be taxed as such, laws are made up by lobbyists so for every loser there is always a winner, and it is never fair. Get used to it when the government intervenes.
bn1221

join:2009-04-29
Cortland, NY
Perhaps GOOG should buy out the French gov't..they have the money to don't they?

ArrayList
netbus developer
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Re: Just the usual French attack on US companies

I don't think you can literally buy a government.

DataDoc
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Re: Just the usual French attack on US companies

said by ArrayList:

I don't think you can literally buy a government.

ROFLMAO!
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djm61
Change? HAH

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Have you looked an Congress lately?

ArrayList
netbus developer
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Re: Just the usual French attack on US companies

who in their right mind would want to own Congress?
Mr Matt

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Google should block all access from French ISP's

Google should block all access from French ISP's and then watch the feces hit the impeller.

skeechan
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That is their prerogative ...

If Google doesn't like it, they don't have to do business there. If enough business leaves, they will change their ways.

cdru
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Re: That is their prerogative ...

said by skeechan:

If Google doesn't like it, they don't have to do business there. If enough business leaves, they will change their ways.

While that is Google's prerogative, they won't leave. It's better to make less money and pay some tax, then to make no money and pay no tax. And the only way that they would pull out completely is if the cost of doing business exceeded the revenues making it economically impossible.

Ultimately, any taxes or levies on service are going to get passed on to advertisers or users of other services. If France wants to charge say 5% on Google's adword revenues then expect to see advertising to change by a similar amount, either rates go up, impressions go down, or whatever.

skeechan
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Re: That is their prerogative ...

No, what they do is not have a physical presence in the country and refuse to pay any taxes in France. French companies would still buy their services.

cdru
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Re: That is their prerogative ...

said by skeechan:

No, what they do is not have a physical presence in the country and refuse to pay any taxes in France. French companies would still buy their services.

Except in many cases, I'm sure that Google would find it even harder to conduct significant business in many countries without a physical presence there. Don't forget that Google is much more than just a search engine.

Also, the EU has been trying recently to close up international tax shelters due to favorable taxing laws. It also wouldn't surprise me that if Google did try to just "leave the country" but still try to operate services within the country that corporate life could be made quite difficult by the government of France (or any other country for that matter).

skeechan
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Re: That is their prerogative ...

There is little in the world more portable that money. Google would have little problem conducting their French business from another EU country with a much lower tax rate such as Liechtenstein.

cdru
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Re: That is their prerogative ...

said by skeechan:

There is little in the world more portable that money. Google would have little problem conducting their French business from another EU country with a much lower tax rate such as Liechtenstein.

If they would have no problem doing it, and it would be cheaper to do so, why aren't they doing it now already? There's a reason why Google has physical offices in nearly every EU country.

Google is not going to leave France. France has too large of a population and too large of an economy to just try and find loopholes around their tax code.

skeechan
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Re: That is their prerogative ...

The taxes hadn't gone up. When it goes up, they'll move money as they already do.

Population is irrelevant. They are not a grocery store; no retail operations. They have no reason to stay in France if taxes go up. They can conduct business in France without being in France.

You think Google can't "outsource"? Of course they can and will. They aren't going to stand by and watch a French tax smash and grab. They will make them an example so that other EU nations don't try and follow suit.

badrouter11

@bellsouth.net

french govt

What is that old saying? The squeaky wheel gets the grease? This is the french politicians way of advertising for a bribe. They will shut up and go away when they get their bribe just like in america.

David
I start new work on
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I think this would piss the following people off

• google
• facebook
• twitter
• Any other social media sites