The Music and Film industry is lobbying its tame politicians to bring in a $14 tax on phones in Sweden.
The reason is that the industry used to make a killing out of blank CDs without having to lift a finger. It convinced its politician friends that since a blank CD was used by pirates they should get a cut which would go to poor struggling musicians, and definitely not the bloated record labels.
So far it is not clear how much of the CD cash ended up with musicians but the recording industry bods did get themselves some jolly nice yachts. Now it seems that they are saving up for another holiday house somewhere hot and have decided that mobile phones are another gold mine.
They can see that the income generated from a copy fee built in to the price of recordable CDs and DVDs – and shared among artists and copyright holders – has almost halved over the last two years and so Copyswede, the umbrella organisation for copyright groups that administers the fee, believes the plunge in revenue can be attributed to a shift in the ways music and films are now consumed.
Its logic is that since there is a technology shift towards computer hard drives or their telephones. Copyswede’s managing director Mattias Åkerlind told news agency TT said that the fees should apply to any products that are particularly suitable for piracy.
Thus it should slapped on external hard drives and USB flash drives while telephones are being used for storage.
Apparently Copyswede is having a job convincing anyone that its idea is a good one. Retailers are opposed to price hikes on goods like telephones and hard disks.
However if politicians think the idea has some merit it would be a good idea to tax everything that has the potential to pirate music and film. A child tax would be useful as they might grow up to steal content, tax on all food because pirates have to eat, a breathing tax, because they also have to breath and a water tax for similar reasons. A sex tax would be vital because it creates children who could become pirates.