Oh, Joy! There’s Now a “Netflix Tax.”

One state is hitting binge watchers where it hurts

By Kirk Miller

 
Netflix
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03 August 2016

Digging Stranger Things? It’s about to get a little more expensive.

This week, Pennsylvania’s so-called “Netflix Tax” went into effect, part of a larger bill that hopes to help fill a giant $1.3 billion gap in the state’s budget.

Essentially, the state’s six-percent sales tax will now be expanded to online downloads and subscription services from anyone using an account with a Pennsylvania billing address.

It’s not just Netflix users who are affected, but any streaming or download service: think Hulu, Spotify, even e-books. It’s not the first state to do so: according to Mashable, cities like Chicago and states like Minnesota have their own variations on the digital tax. Amazon initially fought efforts from states to enact sales taxes, but currently collects from 28 states.

Print, however, is not part of the new tax package, nor are textbooks, the Bible, digital resales of products or purchases by charitable organizations.

Needless to say, people aren’t happy about it:

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