No media tax, thank you

Wednesday, June 7, 2006 at 6:11 | Posted in Denmark, internet, Media, TV | 2 Comments

The Danish daily Berlinske Tidende writes that Danes must in future pay TV-license fee if they have a computer. The fee is motivated with the fact that it is possible to watch TV through the Internet.

This is the most disgraceful plan I have heard over a long time. It is also possible to use sugar for brewing alcoholic beverages. Why not impose alcohol tax on sugar as well? And sugar should by no means be sold to minors in food stores.

Marcel Bartels writes about similar plans in Germany. This raises the question whether there is an effort going on trying to impose a Europe wide media tax on Internet users. Should that be the case, it is the right time to protest now rather than wake up in front of unpleasent facts some morning.

A computer connected to the Internet can be used for a number of different purposes. Watching something as stupid as TV is the last of them to cross my mind. Watching TV is a passive way of consuming your time because you just receive what is served to you. You can not produce any content of your own into TV as you can in the Web. You can not discuss the contents of TV with other viewers or post comments to programmes to be transmitted together with the programme.

The idea of a media tax is to keep things as they are, i.e. let people stay as passive receivers of filtered information. The tax is basically being imposed upon freedom of opinion and speech and access to sources of your choice. A media tax is utterly undemocratic and must be faught with all means.


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  1. […] I wrote a couple of weeks ago about the absurd plans in Denmark and Germany to impose a TV license fee to computers connected to the Internet. The justification behind the media tax is that it is technically possible to watch TV with such a computer. […]

  2. […] It is official now that German Internet users have to pay a media tax for their computer as from 1st January 2007 unless they already pay the compulsory bradcasting license fee. Heise online writes that the premiers of the German provinces took a formal decision about the much disputed media tax today. The extra cost for being hooked up to the Web is 5,52 € a month. […]

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