Other Talk "Otterville" plus Religion/Politics

California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Old 12-12-18, 11:49 PM
  #1  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
Sonic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Posts: 17,400
California proposes a plan to tax text messages

San Francisco (CNN Business)California regulators want to tax text messages to increase funds for programs that bring connectivity to underserved residents.
A new surcharge proposed by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) wouldn't be a per-text tax, but a monthly fee based on a cellular bill that includes any fees for text-message services. Most carriers offer a flat fee option for texting, and already charge a similar fee for other services included in the bill ó such as phone calls. The exact structure of the charge would vary from carrier to carrier.
The commission will vote on the measure January 10, 2019, and is facing strong opposition from industry trade groups like the CTIA, which represents AT&T Mobility, Sprint, and T-Mobile. (AT&T is the parent company of CNN.)

Source
Will I be taxed in California for everytime I scratch my nuts?
Sonic is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 02:35 AM
  #2  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 1,930
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Don't give them any ideas.
Jon2 is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 06:38 AM
  #3  
DVD Talk Godfather
 
DVD Polizei's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 51,649
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Originally Posted by Sonic View Post
Will I be taxed in California for everytime I scratch my nuts?
Run for mayor in San Fran. You will win.
DVD Polizei is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 08:38 AM
  #4  
Admin-Thanos
 
VinVega's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Caught between the moon and NYC
Posts: 30,863
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

If the overall tax on the phone bill goes up, there's not much to argue about, other than vote in people who won't do that I guess, or try to find a cheaper plan. If there is a per text tax, that's pretty fucked up, but it doesn't sound like that. There will just be another surcharge on the bill. Why not just raise the tax that is already there though. Why say you're adding a "text tax?" Or is this being framed by the telecom industry as a text tax?
VinVega is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 09:26 AM
  #5  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 25,625
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

It's not a per text tax (for now). But that also flies in the face of their argument that this is going to cut down spam texts. If it's not per text, then it won't do anything to spam texters.

The reason they're doing this is simple: they use these taxes to pay for Public Purpose Programs, basically making telecommunication subsidized for the poor (what they call universal service). They've been taxing phone service but less people are using phones so the tax has been decreasing while the cost of providing universal service is increasing. So to make up for it, they want to tax text messages, with the argument that "you're paying the same fees as years ago anyway". Because everyone loves getting their phone bill and seeing all of these miscellaneous charges.

One argument against this (of many) is that it doesn't tax other messaging systems, but I'm sure CA will find a way.


(see tables and too many words here:http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDoc.../238227359.PDF)
fujishig is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 10:28 AM
  #6  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Conducting miss-aisle drills and listening to their rock n roll
Posts: 15,747
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Utter bullshit. Fucking California taxes you for waking up in the morning.
Mabuse is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 05:19 PM
  #7  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,045
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Well, Californians just love to be taxed -- witness the recent acceptance of the 13-cent rise in gas taxes on the ballot in Nov -- so this will pass.

And, since Calif. also loves its "poor", the bleeding-hearts have already been brainwashed into thinking texting (and smartphones) should be a "universal right" and not a privilege.

Meanwhile, electric power, which really should be a plebian and easily affordible entity, is vastly, vastly overpriced at an outrageous 45 cents per kilowatt hour.
zyzzle is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 08:15 PM
  #8  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Montreal, Canada
Posts: 28,849
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

I'm all for it. These texting fuckers are everywhere, the restaurant, the movies, the stores,... Let them suffer.

Spoiler:
eXcentris is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 08:23 PM
  #9  
DVD Talk Legend
 
cultshock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: True North Strong & Free
Posts: 11,151
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

I'm with you, I wish texts cost five bucks each to send, then maybe people would stare at their phones a bit less and look around at their surroundings instead (end old man rant).
cultshock is offline  
Old 12-13-18, 09:10 PM
  #10  
kd5
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
kd5's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Ohio, USA
Posts: 8,846
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Apparently California got tired of all the weird press that comes out of Florida and decided to cash in on some of that shit.
kd5 is online now  
Old 12-13-18, 09:39 PM
  #11  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Norm de Plume's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Toronto
Posts: 14,555
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Originally Posted by eXcentris View Post
I'm all for it. These texting fuckers are everywhere, the restaurant, the movies, the stores,... Let them suffer.

Spoiler:
As much as I find those electronically-leashed assholes as annoying as you do, and as much as I support rational taxation of all sorts, this just seems a completely irrational idea for a tax.
Norm de Plume is offline  
Old 12-14-18, 07:36 AM
  #12  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Nick Danger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Albuquerque
Posts: 21,453
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

I don't see why I should pay for 911 services if I don't use them.
Nick Danger is offline  
Old 12-17-18, 02:29 AM
  #13  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
JeffTheAlpaca's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: CA
Posts: 9,833
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

It could only happen here in CA.

I am still waiting for the tax on breathing air which could be coming soon.
JeffTheAlpaca is offline  
Old 12-17-18, 02:58 AM
  #14  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
Sonic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Posts: 17,400
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Text tax has been abandoned:

The FCC put the text tax's future in doubt when it issued a new rule on December 12 determining text messages constitute an "information service" — not a "telecommunications service." CPUC commissioner Carla Peterman withdrew the text tax propsal "in light of the FCC's action."

https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/16/tech/...led/index.html
Sonic is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 01:58 AM
  #15  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,045
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

The FCC's decision is a fucked up decision if I've ever seen one. "Information service" is so egregriously elaborate a description of "text messages" -- 99.999% of which are useless dregs of banter and butchered language tidbits. If text messages are an "information service" then every post which I post in this very forum should be seen as high, classic literature.

Of course text messages are a telecommunications service, just as all phones and telephony services are! How stupid can the FCC get? They were probably paid off by the big 3: Apple, Amazon, and Verizon. As to what motive / future ramifications this decision has I can't guess, but it's probably not good for the consumers and excellent for the businesses' bottom-line

Meanwhile, in Calif. the Darwin awards for "death by text-message" will continue to mount. Foolish idiots!
zyzzle is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 05:08 AM
  #16  
Psi
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Psi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Texas
Posts: 8,845
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

^ You seem to have a lot of opinions about stuff you don't own and don't use. Let other people live their own lives.
Psi is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 05:10 AM
  #17  
Psi
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Psi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Texas
Posts: 8,845
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Originally Posted by zyzzle View Post
Well, Californians just love to be taxed -- witness the recent acceptance of the 13-cent rise in gas taxes on the ballot in Nov -- so this will pass.
Great prediction
Psi is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 09:00 AM
  #18  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 25,625
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Originally Posted by zyzzle View Post
The FCC's decision is a fucked up decision if I've ever seen one. "Information service" is so egregriously elaborate a description of "text messages" -- 99.999% of which are useless dregs of banter and butchered language tidbits. If text messages are an "information service" then every post which I post in this very forum should be seen as high, classic literature.

Of course text messages are a telecommunications service, just as all phones and telephony services are! How stupid can the FCC get? They were probably paid off by the big 3: Apple, Amazon, and Verizon. As to what motive / future ramifications this decision has I can't guess, but it's probably not good for the consumers and excellent for the businesses' bottom-line

Meanwhile, in Calif. the Darwin awards for "death by text-message" will continue to mount. Foolish idiots!
If they heavily taxed text messaging (which earlier you seemed to be against), do you really think it would stop people from using other texting apps on their phones that use data?
fujishig is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 11:14 AM
  #19  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Conducting miss-aisle drills and listening to their rock n roll
Posts: 15,747
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

That’s what I was thinking. I don’t know much about this, but don’t most texts go through the data and not the cellular? Therefore they’re not part of telecommunications the way a phone call is.
Mabuse is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 11:15 AM
  #20  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 25,625
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Originally Posted by Mabuse View Post
That’s what I was thinking. I don’t know much about this, but don’t most texts go through the data and not the cellular? Therefore they’re not part of telecommunications the way a phone call is.
This tax was specifically on the text messaging part of your phone bill. The complaint the phone companies had (which to me is valid) is that it's unfairly taxing them and getting people to move to the digital apps that do the same thing but have no tax.

Of course, like I said before, it would just be another fee on top of the dozens of fees you pay already and nobody would really notice, it wasn't really a per text charge or anything.
fujishig is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 11:50 AM
  #21  
Political Exile
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 4,045
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Originally Posted by Mabuse View Post
Thatís what I was thinking. I donít know much about this, but donít most texts go through the data and not the cellular? Therefore theyíre not part of telecommunications the way a phone call is.
I'm many years removed from when I worked on the project, but text messages pre-dates data as we know it, and are sent over a control channel (the same used to ring your phone with an incoming call) and uses a dedicated SMS server which stores and forwards messages connected with other network SMS servers.
PerryD is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 11:54 AM
  #22  
DVD Talk Godfather
 
DVD Polizei's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 51,649
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Originally Posted by VinVega View Post
If the overall tax on the phone bill goes up, there's not much to argue about, other than vote in people who won't do that I guess, or try to find a cheaper plan. If there is a per text tax, that's pretty fucked up, but it doesn't sound like that. There will just be another surcharge on the bill. Why not just raise the tax that is already there though. Why say you're adding a "text tax?" Or is this being framed by the telecom industry as a text tax?
You've heard of Gateway Drugs, right. Well, this is a Gateway Tax. The city is doing it on purpose. Telecoms certainly won't care, as they'll get a piece of this shitty-smelling pie. They might feign being on the side of the consumer, but in the back rooms with the city council members...they are toasting to their new money-making idea.

And confirming what PerryD said about text messages...the data/text is already in the call being sent and requires no additional resources getting to one location or another. It's just amazing how much of a rip-off text messaging has become.
DVD Polizei is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 12:42 PM
  #23  
Political Exile
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 4,045
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

California is ranked 19th in cell phone taxes at around 13%.

Illinois just took over #1 in 2018 with a 21% tax on cellular service, add in the federal tax, the total is 27.6% tax added on to my bill, an average of $331 per family. Residents in Chicago pay an even higher taxes at an average of $488 with the added Chicago city and excise taxes added in.
PerryD is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 06:08 PM
  #24  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,045
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Originally Posted by fujishig View Post
If they heavily taxed text messaging (which earlier you seemed to be against), do you really think it would stop people from using other texting apps on their phones that use data?
I'm not really for it or against it, since I don't use text messages or even own a smartphone. However, any new tax like this generally has unknown and usually strongly negative repercussions further down the road. If it had passed, I'm sure everyone would have been affected somehow, even those who don't own smartphones.

I always thought text messages were "not data" in the same sense that a teletype message went through the phone telecommunications system years ago. Same deal for pager data years ago. The concept of "digital data" post-dates all of that, so "text messages" are legacy and should be considered a part of the telecommunications system.

All I know is rather soon now, I'll be taxed for the air I breathe in Calif. Everything else is already taxed at ridiculous and absurd rates.
zyzzle is offline  
Old 12-18-18, 07:32 PM
  #25  
DVD Talk Hero
 
TomOpus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Kansas City, MO
Posts: 32,234
Re: California proposes a plan to tax text messages

Yet, you choose to live there.
TomOpus is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.