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France's 'Culture Tax' Could Hit YouTube and Facebook

timothy posted about a year ago | from the culture-of-collection dept.

Google 314

PolygamousRanchKid writes with this excerpt from BusinessWeek: "Should YouTube subsidize le cinéma français? France's audiovisual r.egulator thinks so. In a report this week, the Superior Audiovisual Council (CSA) says that video-sharing websites should be subject to a tax that helps finance the production of French films and TV shows. ... Although the CSA report says that videos posted online by private individuals should not be subject to taxation, it contends that video-sharing sites increasingly have become 'professional' content providers. ... Separately, France is considering a tax on smartphones, tablets, and other devices as another source of revenue for cultural subsidies. The proposed tax would raise an estimated €86 million annually that would be used to finance the 'cultural industries' digital transition,' France's Culture Ministry said at the time."

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Kickback time (4, Insightful)

MrDoh! (71235) | about a year ago | (#45803867)

"That's a nice video streaming business you have there, you should speak to my cousin, he runs a french language film production company, sure he can help you..."

Re:Kickback time (2)

Sqr(twg) (2126054) | about a year ago | (#45804337)

...except when the state does it, it is legal.

I don't see a problem with the YouTube tax. According to TFA, YouTube would be subject to the already existing tax on video-on-demand. This means they would have to pay a percentage of whatever people pay them to watch YouTube (on paid channels), just like their competitors.

The tax on smartphones etc is more problematic. It may lead to smartphones that disable or cripple video streaming just to avoid the tax. If you're wondering why your cellphone or digital camera can only record 30 minutes of video, it is to avoid another tax on "video cameras" [tested.com] that was designed to compensate culture workers.

Frogs (-1, Flamebait)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | about a year ago | (#45803873)

If French had any talent for making movies they would pay for themselves and wouldn't need to be subsidized. Name one French movie that isn't boring and pretentious crap.

There are more french film than you would think (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45803897)

5th elements was a french film. Leon was a french film. both from luc besson. And arguably both went beyond the "shootyshooty bang bang special fx" crapfest that seem to come out of holywood. But I am probably highly biased.

Re:There are more french film than you would think (2)

Eunuchswear (210685) | about a year ago | (#45804041)

And arguably both went beyond the "shootyshooty bang bang special fx" crapfest that seem to come out of holywood.

shooty shooty bang bang is Luc's speciality!

Taxi 1,2,3
The Transporter 1,2,3
Taken 1,2 ...

And that's just the letter "t".

Re:There are more french film than you would think (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#45804239)

First taxi was hilarious though. Definitely one of the better movies.

Re:There are more french film than you would think (3, Funny)

JustOK (667959) | about a year ago | (#45804283)

It lost something when they created the TV series.

Re: Frogs (5, Insightful)

lord_rob the only on (859100) | about a year ago | (#45803909)

There are many names you can cite
Proof is when a good french movie ls released you americans make exactly the same movie but with american actors

Re: Frogs (1)

stud9920 (236753) | about a year ago | (#45803925)

...and all the adult jokes removed / replaced by teenage wee-wee poop jokes, because the latter are ok

Re: Frogs (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45803969)

Stealing culture and money is the way of the Hebrew. Have you noticed Hollywood is overflowing with Jews and Scientologists?

Re: Frogs (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804021)

There are many names you can cite
Proof is when a good french movie ls released you americans make exactly the same movie but with american actors

Hollywood not in here sindrome dates back to the early 20th century. That is one of the reasons if not the main reason why professional dubbing for cinema was never a viable industry in the US for a large part of the 20th century. And also why foreign films most of the time have had niche status relagated to film festivals. Contrast that to France, Germany, Italy or Spain who have a domestic film industry going back almost 100 years, and yet they import foreign films and dub them for their local audience. And this means we don't have to remake foreign films, we give them the original product.

Re: Frogs (2)

tlambert (566799) | about a year ago | (#45804071)

Hollywood not in here sindrome dates back to the early 20th century. That is one of the reasons if not the main reason why professional dubbing for cinema was never a viable industry in the US for a large part of the 20th century. And also why foreign films most of the time have had niche status relagated to film festivals. Contrast that to France, Germany, Italy or Spain who have a domestic film industry going back almost 100 years, and yet they import foreign films and dub them for their local audience. And this means we don't have to remake foreign films, we give them the original product.

Clearly, you have missed out on the whole "Kung Fu Theatre" 1AM genre thing...

Re: Frogs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804431)

Proof is when a good french movie ls released you americans make exactly the same movie but with american actors

Proof was a really good play. Never saw the movie. Oh, wait, now I see the rest of the sentence.

Re: Frogs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804495)

benefits 'cultural industries'

now is this before or after the film industry in France sues or has there version DCMA, against those sites it "deems" to be pirating???

Re:Frogs (5, Interesting)

SerpentMage (13390) | about a year ago | (#45803929)

Actually French films are rather good. But as another poster said, Americans tend to remake French films. With an example being the original French film, "Anything for Her", being played by Russell Crowe or one you should know... "True Lies". Or did you know about "The Tourist"? I am not going to espouse that French films are superior, they tend to drivel quite a bit at times. However, to say that they have no talent shows that you are ignorant on movies.

Re:Frogs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804037)

True Lies sucked ass. Unless everything about it was lost in translation, you should move that from the "refutes GP's point" to "supports GP's point" column.

I'd also point out that the 20 or so Brits I know all thing the American Office is drastically superior in every way to teh Brit one. Of course, the US Being Human is utter shit. So I guess the point of this post is that True Lies sucked.

Re:Frogs (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804199)

Every good thing about that movie (La Totale, btw) *was* lost in the remake.

Re:Frogs (1)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about a year ago | (#45804215)

As a Brit, yes, the US Office was indeed better than the UK once. The UK one was sufficiently cringeworthy that it was a chore to watch.

But the American Coupling was vastly worse than the UK Coupling. With the same script no less. The UK Coupling was possibly the funniest series ever in any universe.

YMMV

Re:Frogs (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#45804253)

I suspect it's a cultural thing. UK version of coupling was understandable to those who have experienced UK culture to significant amount. It was a very Western European show if you will.

US version tried to do the same thing and failed because it was too alien for US culture. They should have changed the script to match the local culture far more to succeed in my opinion. It's true that you can to extent sell another culture's product, but it either requires heavy and costly indoctrination (as hollywood does it) or it needs to be something special (like classic movies). It doesn't really work for fairly modern sitcom that is very much based on real life experiences, as these are different between cultures.

Re:Frogs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45803935)

If French had any talent for making movies they would pay for themselves and wouldn't need to be subsidized. Name one French movie that isn't boring and pretentious crap.

If energy companies had any talent for producing oil, they would pay for themselves and wouldn't need to be subsidized.

If... hey, this is fun, join in!

Re:Frogs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804069)

Swimming Pool, Brotherhood of the Wolf...

Re:Frogs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804225)

"Le salaire de la peur", "le corbeau", "l'armée des ombres". There are good french movies. Unfortunately, all good french movies are old. Recent french movies are crap. It also doesn't help when americans do a shitty remake of a good old french movie ("Les diaboliques" cough cough).

Re:Frogs (2)

_Shad0w_ (127912) | about a year ago | (#45804327)

"Les cites des enfant perdu" is also good.

Re:Frogs (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about a year ago | (#45804289)

If French had any talent for making movies they would pay for themselves and wouldn't need to be subsidized. Name one French movie that isn't boring and pretentious crap.

Oddly there's quite a few Canadians who say the same thing about the government subsidizing movie and tv production here in Canada. Especially subsidizing things from Quebec...and it's gotten a lot more attention in the last few years, especially when large swaths of the media and publications have become anti-anglophone.

Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45803881)

The purveyors of cat videos should be taxed to support the production of works more substantive than cat videos.

Re:Yes (2)

Eunuchswear (210685) | about a year ago | (#45804053)

The purveyors of cat videos should be taxed to support the production of works more substantive than cat videos.

"Works more substantive than cat videos"? Heretic! Burn him!

Well... (0, Troll)

jamstar7 (694492) | about a year ago | (#45803885)

...you lost me at 'French culture'...

Re: Well... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804003)

Classic problem from someone from US. Culture is not in their vocabulary.

Re: Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804163)

They have culture. Unfortunately, it primarily consists of burgers, gangster rap and reality TV shows.

Re: Well... (1)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about a year ago | (#45804219)

No, the cheese has culture. Literally.

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804033)

...you lost me at 'French culture'...

Dont' worry, you just showed your infinite ignorance.
Have a good day.

Re:Well... (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year ago | (#45804273)

Infinite ignorance. What a concept. Can ignorance be truly infinite, or have we merely failed to measure the limits of ignorance?

Not Culture (3, Insightful)

mfwitten (1906728) | about a year ago | (#45803893)

If you have to subsidize it, then it ain't culture; it's history.

Re:Not Culture (5, Informative)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#45803951)

But everyone does it. The UK has a system of subsidies for movie production (Lottery money, mostly). Uwe Boll's financial success came from exploiting the German system of subsidies to make films that were subsidised for more than their production cost, making it impossible for them to do anything but profit. The US approach is less open subsidies than tax breaks, both official and a policy of openly tolerating accounting practices that would be considered illegal in any other industry.

Re:Not Culture (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804067)

But everyone does it.

Do you actually think that is a reason? . . . or are you trying to hold everyone else accountable? I learned at a pretty young age that when I tried to use the phrase, "but all my friends are doing it," that I was *still* accountable for being responsible and doing the right thing - which meant that I reaped the consequences of the stupid thing I just did that I tried to use that excuse to escape.

Check your language - whenever you use that phrase you should seriously question your logic.

Re:Not Culture (1)

Anarchix (3411975) | about a year ago | (#45804151)

YOU should clearly check your logic. He used a reductio ad absurdum. By arguing that everyone does it, the logical deduction is that there is no culture and that there is only history when it comes to movies, which is just stupid.

Re:Not Culture (4, Insightful)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#45804235)

Actually I was arguing that if everyone does it, all must do it. As with any other area of protectionism. It's your basic game theory:

- If no-one does it, all achieve modest success (ie, cultural influence)
- If some do it and some don't, those who do achieve great success at the expense of those who do not.
- Therefore if some start doing it, everyone else has to join in to achieve an even playing field again.

Re:Not Culture (2, Insightful)

erikkemperman (252014) | about a year ago | (#45804187)

And don't forget the Pentagon. Whenever you see a two bit tv show featuring, say, an aircraft carrier, it is subsidized by DoD. Strings attached of course, so it is effectively outsourced propaganda.

Re: Not Culture (1)

BESTouff (531293) | about a year ago | (#45804265)

Do you have a reference for that ? I'm genuinely interested.

Re: Not Culture (2)

erikkemperman (252014) | about a year ago | (#45804379)

sure [salon.com] . But this is just one of many relevant google hits for "Hollywood pentagon".

Re: Not Culture (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804393)

Top Gun.

They had recruiters ready outside when people left the cinema.

Google finds on your mil/art funding question (4, Informative)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#45804423)

"The Pentagon’s strengthening grip on Hollywood"
http://www.salon.com/2011/08/29/sirota_military_movies/ [salon.com]
"The U.S. military's Hollywood connection"
http://articles.latimes.com/2011/aug/21/entertainment/la-ca-military-movies-20110821 [latimes.com]
http://movieline.com/2013/02/06/military-entertainment-complex-hollywood-pentagon-relationship-battleship-zero-dark-thirty/ [movieline.com]
Operation Hollywood
http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2004/09/operation-hollywood [motherjones.com]
A script often self corrected until the use of mil equipment works out.
The UK, Australia, Germany, France all have their funding mixes for their own culture. The US mil movie/script 'corrections' aspect is well known, has been reported for years.

Re:Not Culture (2)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year ago | (#45804203)

Imagine you want to make a movie.
One the one hand, you can fund it yourself or try to find investors who you'll have to pay back if the movie makes money.
On the other hand, you can just take some free government money and keep all profits for yourself.
Just because everybody does it, doesn't mean they can't do without.

Re:Not Culture (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804063)

If you have to subsidize it, then it ain't culture; it's history.

Wrong. I know that it's a difficult concept for an American to grasp, for someone that was raised in the paradise of quantitative finance; but some things you cannot put a price on. France (it's not the only country to do this by the way) has decide since a long time ago that CULTURE cannot be reduced only to a pure capitalistic profit driven enterprise.
Hence why a part of the taxes that are paid by the French go into subsidizing the production of local culture, be it films, literature, etc... It's a choice made by the French. Not everything has to be sold or evaluated on the altar of neo-liberal capitalism.

Re:Not Culture (2)

alexgieg (948359) | about a year ago | (#45804165)

It's a choice made by the French.

No, it's a choice made by the French government and imposed on French citizens. Those, when they chose, do so by way of opting to watch this movie and not that movie, by paying for this and not for that. No imposition is ever a choice, except by those who do the imposing.

If French movies were good, as in "something the French are actually willing to directly pay for", subsidies wouldn't be necessary because those movies would pay for themselves. Since the French don't actually want to pay for them what they'd cost to become profitable, then the roundabout way is to make them pay anyway just because. After all, what would happen to all these friendly filmmakers of ours if they had to, you know, make stuff people wanted to watch? Oh, the horror! Oh, the tyranny! No, no, no, much better to have everything decided by enlightened bureaucrats who, as every bureaucrat knows, are always and by definition superior in their judgment to the wishes, preferences and desires of the ignorant rabble, harumph!

Re:Not Culture (4, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year ago | (#45804343)

So, Alexgieg - you are merely defending America's capitalistic approach to "culture", am I correct? Basically, if it doesn't make a heap of money for Hollywood executives and investors, then it's not really culture, right?

Sadly, America has lost a lot of culture in the past century, because of Hollywood. There was a time when an American citizen could be entertained by Russians, Slavs, Africans, Asians, Mexicans, or any other culture they might choose. Today? We've lost almost all of that. The only entertainment that has survived is that which corporate executives approve of. Entertainment which they have harnessed toward the goal of milking Americans of their money.

As a young boy, and as a young man, I remember being fascinated by the diversity that was obvious in my own hometown, and in the surrounding region. Today - cultural diversity seems to be about dead. Everyone, no matter their background, flocks to the cinema for their entertainment. They all listen to music for which they have paid - music approved by RIAA represented companies. What has happened to our folk music, and our folk lore?

Culture?

I really don't know much about French movies, or French music, or French culture in general. I'm not a student of any of the arts. If I were a student, maybe my opinion of French art would be lower than Hindi, or Chinese, or Russian. Maybe. I really don't know.

What I do know, without a doubt, is that the shit that Hollyweird puts out is truly that - shit. Bang-bang shootemups, often times with less plot than little children could offer. "Action thriller" is just about synonymous with "brain dead".

If California experienced an earthquake that swallowed Hollyweird and all of it's execs, along with all of it's major actors - mankind would have lost nothing.

I would much prefer to sample a little culture from places like France, than to be forced to watch another idiot action movie out of Hollyweird, thank you very much. Not that I intend to start studying any of the arts, mind you. But, I do enjoy a little entertainment now and then. There is nothing on the airwaves in the US that entertains me.

Re:Not Culture (1)

phayes (202222) | about a year ago | (#45804345)

Also it's muuuuch better to create a new administration to manage the money as the management positions are a handy hideaway for politicians that have been voted out of office. We wouldn't want any politicians going unemployed, no, no, no. French politicians prefer that the rest of the economy be weighed down by these blood sucking vermin & now that the pool of french donors is insufficient for their increasing appetite, they are looking to the internet for new hosts...

Re:Not Culture (1)

Alioth (221270) | about a year ago | (#45804407)

There are quite a good number of good French films. However, the French have an uphill struggle making a movie profitable even if it were the world's best movie, because they are in French.

Hollywood has it easy, the English speaking world that understands US culture is enormous (300M Americans, 30 odd million Canadians, 60 odd million Brits and Irish, several million Australians and Kiwis, plus a huge number of people who can speak English fluently as a second language). The French on the other hand have only 65 million French people as their potential audience and that's it and hardly anyone learns French (yes, British people tend to be forced to learn French at school, but probably under 1% ever actually go on to learn it well enough to enjoy a movie in French, I'd wager the number of British people who can even hold a basic conversation in French is in single digit percentages).

If the French want any French language films at all, they almost have no choice but to subsidise them.

Re:Not Culture (1)

isorox (205688) | about a year ago | (#45804441)

If you have to subsidize it, then it ain't culture; it's history.

Like the lord of the rings film? NZ$300 million in subsidies. Iron man 3 got $20m.

Re:Not Culture (1)

TheP4st (1164315) | about a year ago | (#45804447)

If you have to subsidize it, then it ain't culture.

Isn't a lot of the US cultural institutions subsidized via donations and fund raisers so that rich folks to mingle and be seen with other of their ilk also pretending to be socially/culturally concerned by donating a tiny fraction of their wealth and then write off the donations on their taxes? The difference is that in socialist Europe we cut out the middle man by taxing directly and then distribute to directly to theaters, museums, art projects, movies and so forth.

Culture being subsidized is hardly anything new, be it via donations, taxes or a patron.

By your criteria Beethoven's compositions would fail to qualify as art as he were dependent on Archduke Rudolph's patronage to such a degree that he dedicated more than 10 of his compositions to Rudolph.

Behind the times. (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about a year ago | (#45803895)

FTS:

The proposed tax would raise an estimated €86 million annually that would be used to finance the 'cultural industries' digital transition,' France's Culture Ministry said at the time.

If they're now thinking of a tax (which probably takes years to implement) to fund (more time to implement) the digital transition of the cultural industry, those industries are really well behind the times.

They should be well on the way by now, if not finished already, with this digital transition.

Re:Behind the times. (3, Insightful)

rusty0101 (565565) | about a year ago | (#45803953)

You're making the assumption that french culture is independent of the french govornment. While this may be true for those artists that are earning a living on the art they produce, the govornment of france feels that they are responsible for maintaining french culture, and as a govornment agency have mandated studies that have determined that this is the cost of making this transition, and as a result have instigated other studies that have recommended that taxes on these artifacts of the digital transition should cover that cost. The fact that the cost has already been bourn by the artists and art viewers as they have made the transition independent of the studies of the state does not eliminate the requirement that the state collect those fees, to make the transition.

When all is done, every artist in France is likely to be given a 2 Euro digital camera that does not capture more than 6 images at VGA quality or lower, at a time, and does not support any of the various flash media storage formats that are in circulation, To allow them to transition to 'digital'. any remaining incidental funds recovered by the temorary taxation will be used to cover the costs of distributing those cameras.

Re:Behind the times. (1)

Panoptes (1041206) | about a year ago | (#45804267)

The French (capitalisation) government (spelling) has (singular verb) initiated (not instigated) ... and so on. What price culture?

Taxes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45803911)

There has to be a way to tax those corporations.

On everything I buy in a shop, there's tax.
My income is taxed.
If a brick and mortar store makes a profit they get taxed.

If google makes a profit they get.......oh wait. If you're a multibillion corporation you don't have to pay taxes.

Re:Taxes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804001)

This is due tax evasion by using tax havens and is not related to this at all.

All the biggest corporations do the same, their European head office in Dublin and all the national subsidies operate nominally in zero profit, thus avoiding income tax.

Tap this grieving injustice before fabricationg special taxes that potentially hinder competition.

Re:Taxes. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804081)

There has to be a way to tax those corporations.

On everything I buy in a shop, there's tax.
My income is taxed.
If a brick and mortar store makes a profit they get taxed.

If google makes a profit they get.......oh wait. If you're a multibillion corporation you don't have to pay taxes.

I can't but help ask: Why, if you have a dick up your ass, is it more important to get a dick up everyone elses ass than it is to remove the dick from your own ass?

You have an obnoxious tax, and you solution is to obnoxiously tax people other than yourself, rather than stopping the obnoxious taxation of yourself? Why is it more important that other people suffer, than it is to stop your own suffering?

Re:Taxes. (4, Interesting)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#45804279)

No, it's important to make everyone pay by the rules. Anarchist bullshit you're spewing sounds nice if you have a strong anarchist bend, but otherwise, it sounds quite insane. Reality is that taxation is about preventing the suffering, rather than creating it. It creates safety nets, pays for medicine, police, fire protection and so on. It guarantees some income even if you lose your job, or get hurt. It lets you go to work when you have young children and gives you a place to put them in daycare. It provides centralized and functional education system. And countless other things.
Tax dodging is what generates suffering, heavy suffering at that. Much of the current budget problems in France are because traditional tax revenues are dying up - because of increasing paths of tax evasion being available to traditionally large contributors, such as large companies.

Companies that dodge this need to be taxed like others, both to prevent suffering and to allow competition to survive and adapt. They should not be allowed to effectively steal their contribution from taxation pool as they do now while destroying their competition though these unfair means.

Re:Taxes. (3, Informative)

phayes (202222) | about a year ago | (#45804419)

Some people visibly like having having a dick up their ass and will use any means to do so like conflating refusing an unjust tax with the refusal of the members of the EEC to harmonise their tax codes so that they could eliminate/control the double Irish. It isn't anarchy to denounce this manoeuvre by French socialists to finance their buddies by taxing everyone on the Internet. For the amount of money I already pay for my blank DVD, Internet access, Hard drives, USB keys, etc, I as a french citizen have received precisely nothing.

The landslide starts (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45803913)

Some of you will say it has already started. And in some ways, it already has. However, as these 'small' little seperators wiggle their way into the legal framework, country by country, the Net is going to become a legally convulated hell for personal media, personal information, and copyright. It's pretty grey now, however this is just going to murk up the waters more.

Net neutrality was a half-assed attempt to stopgap it in the US, but the FCC, however contadictory politicized and impotent, sure as hell isn't going to consider that now! With Italys' recent win over Google, and now France's 'tax' hitting the major players, this feels all to familiar that it's just the beginning of a landslide of legislation to reign in information sharing, and to insure capitalizing from it.

Nice try. (4, Informative)

nospam007 (722110) | about a year ago | (#45803915)

Just like last time when they tried to save the french film industry from the pirates, they created a new agency to stop piracy.

After a couple of years and a for a budget of 13,7 million dollars a year, they actually had exactly 2 users convicted, 1 user slapped on the wrist and 1 user who got a fine of 150 Euros.

This will work exactly the same, not at all.

http://www.billboard.com/biz/articles/news/1483616/frances-hadopi-2-convictions-1-fine-125-million-warnings-since-2009 [billboard.com]

Re:Nice try. (1)

Anarchix (3411975) | about a year ago | (#45804171)

Comparing Hadopi to a tax... The failure of Hadopi is no argument to presume the failure of such tax. I don't see any logical deduction here.

Re:Nice try. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804179)

And no users were hurt.
That was actually (probably) exactly what they wanted.
France is on the legal side of copyright, while not hurting individuals. :)

Translation (1)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | about a year ago | (#45803921)

In more general terms, what they are saying is that successful businesses should be taxed to pay for their unsuccessful competition to catch up.

Re:Translation (1)

DrEasy (559739) | about a year ago | (#45804075)

Because the quality of art and culture can be measured by its financial success?

Re:Translation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804111)

Because the quality of art and culture can be measured by its financial success?

All you have to do is see how well McDonald's is doing! From this, we can see the level American art and culture.

Re:Translation (1)

phayes (202222) | about a year ago | (#45804469)

Macdo, as they are colloquially called here in France is doing quite well here. It is the biggest purchaser of french beef, all of which is consumed locally. For all the Egghead Intellectuals that complain about fast food while sponging off governmental programs, there is rest of France that tries to work for a living, and yes, goes to Macdo occasionally.

There is another option (2)

Charcharodon (611187) | about a year ago | (#45803933)

They could just post videos on the web just like everyone else. Last time I checked its not exactly expensive to do.

Stronger copyright laws - not "culture tax" (2)

Phoeniyx (2751919) | about a year ago | (#45803961)

Some of the posters are saying that France produced this and that movie and Americans just ripped them off - and that somehow makes this culture tax justifiable. Well, if these movies "were" ripped off, then what you need are stronger copyright laws. The various countries have their own copyright laws that are connected with international treaties - lobby to have them strengthened. My "guess" is that while there may be a "few" movies that were "ripped off", this culture tax would try to "recover" much more than what was taken from these few movies. And what the hell does Google/youtube have to do with some American studio ripping off some French movie? These "stealing" American studios try to keep their produced content from youtube also and youtube has a good take down system. This whole episode reminds me of the blank DVD tax saga in Canada - where to support the Canadian music industry that are "negatively effected" by music piracy, the stupid government allowed a blank DVD tax where every blank DVD costs a few cents extra to go to the coffers of the Canadian music people. WTF. I don't even copy music. They tried to do the same nonsense with USB sticks - but failed.

Re:Stronger copyright laws - not "culture tax" (2)

Eunuchswear (210685) | about a year ago | (#45804091)

I think you're misreading the talk about remakes - they were in response to the claim that France has no culture, not an excuse for the tax.

The remakes are not "rip offs", Hollywood is pretty serious about not getting involved in "Intelectual Property" disputes with anyone with enough money to pay for serious lawyers. I think you'll find that the people who own the rights to the original film get paid before the remake is made.

Re:Stronger copyright laws - not "culture tax" (1)

phayes (202222) | about a year ago | (#45804483)

Indeed. The people who sell the rights often make more off the bad Hollywood makeover than they do off the original.

Re:Stronger copyright laws - not "culture tax" (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year ago | (#45804359)

Good God - don't encourage ANYONE to strengthen copyright law! Outrageous, draconian copyright law already inhibits artists. Real artists that is, not the media whores who sign those big corporate contracts.

We already have this in Sweden. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45803983)

Here the fee for owning any device with a CPU is 200 EUR/year. Owning any programmable device without paying for this "licence" is illegal and will result in a visit from the police.

Re:We already have this in Sweden. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45803991)

Wait, seriously? Not even one-time sale tax, but annually?

Could somebody elaborate on that, please? Is that correct? How's that reported/calculated/audited?

Re:We already have this in Sweden. (1)

kthreadd (1558445) | about a year ago | (#45804059)

He/she is talking about the television fee. Since a couple of years ago public radio and television in Sweden is broadcasted on the Internet, and as a result any computer capable of connecting to the Internet is license bound. The license fee is collected once per year per household. This has of course been somewhat controversial and the topic is currently under heavy debate. The entire funding system is likely to change in the future, probably to a more traditional tax-like system.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Television_licensing_in_Sweden [wikipedia.org]

Re: We already have this in Sweden. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804087)

He is talking about the Swedish broadcast fee. Swedish public service radio and tv is financed not by tax, but by a fee. The fee is, by law, for any device able to receive tv broadcasts.

Since Swedish Television are now "broadcasting" (you can watch the channels on their homepage) on the Internet, the agency responsible for collecting that fee has decided fee that any device capable of browsing webpages on the Internet make the owner liable to pay this fee. Thus, anything with a cpu and a network connection, including smartphones.

The fee is per household though, not per device.

Re: We already have this in Sweden. (1)

tomhath (637240) | about a year ago | (#45804329)

Swedish public service radio and tv is financed not by tax, but by a fee. The fee is, by law, for any device able to receive tv broadcasts.

I suppose calling it a "fee" means they don't count it against the Swedes' tax rate. But what you describe is a tax.

Re: We already have this in Sweden. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804401)

Kind of. It's called a fee for historical reasons. The idea is that the state should not be able to control it directly, since it would be inappropriate if the state controlled the funding of the entity that has journalistic responsibility to examine the state.

Re:We already have this in Sweden. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804123)

Worth it. SVT is awesome.

Oh, quelle catastrophe! (1)

Confused (34234) | about a year ago | (#45804005)

What a catastrophe, Youtube and DailyMotion are supposed to pay a tax of 1% or so on the business involved in France! I'm certain, this 1% of their revenue will make the difference between going bankrupt or being the pride of capitalistic success.

Seriously, to corporations like Google or Amazon, taxes and tariffs are just regular business to be dealt with as appropriate, just like road traffic is to be dealt with when driving around the city. It really doesn't matter whether its called VAT or some other name or if the money is used as bribes for corrupt politicos - sorry lobbying money - to avoid costly laws. It's never a matter of freedom or or up about fairness. In the end only one thing count and that's how much money is left after all expenses are paid.

Classic France (2, Insightful)

pablo_max (626328) | about a year ago | (#45804019)

Seriously, this is classical French behavior. Over the years they have put various taxes on this or that to protect this or that industry. Think taxes on blank media which should go to the record companies. Not a cent to artists mind you, but I digress.

Actually, the only real way France will learn is to simple ignore them. By ignore them, I mean completely pull out of the France. No french versions of websites. No, french youtube, no French google or bing.

I wonder how long it would take for the French people to freak out for being cut off from any meaningful content?

Alternatively, for French versions of websites, you have have a "pay to enter". On youtubes page, there can be a sign saying due to the ridiculous cost of operating in France, you will need to pay 5€ per month in order to watch any videos.
The same on google and bing and yahoo. Want to search? 15 cent per search.

I say call their bluff and pull out of France. Now, if we could just get those surrender monkeys out of the EU....

Re:Classic France (1)

Anarchix (3411975) | about a year ago | (#45804181)

We are a sovereign country. Why do we care of what we do in our country? If Google doesn't make any money in France, I am sure they will pull themselves out of France.

Re:Classic France (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804233)

I'm sure Google pays as much tax as anybody else in France for the part of their business they conduct in France. That should be enough. There's no reason why they should pay culture taxes for their entire business just because some stupid little country (which may or may not include France) wants them to.

Re:Classic France (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year ago | (#45804397)

You're sure, huh? Maybe you haven't been reading any damned thing about corporate taxes. Or, maybe you've been reading but suffer some comprehension problem.

NONE OF THE MAJOR CORPORATIONS PAYS MORE THAN A PITTANCE OF THE TAXES DUE IN ANY NATION!!

I hope that is clear enough for you. When Google, or any other major player, has a million dollars in tax liability, they just shuffle numbers on ledgers, move some money around, and hide that liability wherever convenient - like Ireland.

Google is your friend. Look up "tax haven".

Re:Classic France (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804453)

There's no reason why they should pay culture taxes for their entire business

A tax is a tax is a tax. Money is fungible. My taxes support my country (as well as this other one I live in these days), for their healthcare, their wars, their state dinners and their homeless shelter programs. I don't get to choose individually what the money is spent on. It's how the world works if you want to live in a civilized society.

Re:Classic France (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804479)

Well that's cute. So let all of us in the entire world go together and pay tax to this French culture company.

Archive.org: MAME 0.151 ROMs (November 2013) 42.8G (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804049)

Archive.org: MAME 0.151 ROMs (November 2013) 42.8GB zip/torrent

#

that's the jingle bell
that's the jingle bell
that's the jingle bell rock!

https://archive.org/details/MAME_0.151_ROMs [archive.org]
https://archive.org/download/MAME_0.151_ROMs/MAME_0.151_ROMs.zip [archive.org]

MAME 0.151 ROMs (November 2013)

MAME (an acronym of Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator) is an emulator application designed to recreate the hardware of arcade game systems in software on modern personal computers and other platforms. The intention is to preserve gaming history by preventing vintage games from being lost or forgotten. The aim of MAME is to be a reference to the inner workings of the emulated arcade machines; the ability to actually play the games is considered "a nice side effect".

This item is part of the collection: MESS and MAME
https://archive.org/details/messmame [archive.org]

Identifier: MAME_0.151_ROMs
Date: 2013-11
Mediatype: software
Year: 2013
Publicdate: 2013-11-23 12:59:45
Addeddate: 2013-11-23 12:59:45
Language: English

#

Internet Archive releases hundreds of classic game console ROMs

http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2013/12/internet-archive-releases-hundreds-of-classic-game-console-roms/ [arstechnica.com]

Confirms what I know about France (1)

vikingpower (768921) | about a year ago | (#45804057)

Last week, there was news that, although economic growth is picking up nearly everywhere in the EU ( the 2008 crisis seems finally over ), France is lagging behind, and we hear more and more often the epithet "sick man of Europe". I studied and worked in France, hence I know that society pretty well. The problem has always seemed, to me, that the average Frenchman expects the French state to provide him with anything he needs: health, safety, a job, a pension, vacation. Add to this the curious "cultural exception" France has always demanded for itself to be made within Europe and, indeed, the entire world; add to this its isolationism, and its lack of true opening to what is now the modern world - and you have the recipe for driving an entire country to insignificance. France, indeed and as a culture, is no more.

Re:Confirms what I know about France (1)

Anarchix (3411975) | about a year ago | (#45804209)

Economic growth is picking up nearly everywhere in the EU? I have missed that, can you provide us some sources? France isn't doing well, but calling it the sickman of Europe is rather blunt to me (http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/11/09/more-notes-on-france-bashing/, http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/12/les-not-so-miserables/ [nytimes.com] , http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/13/more-on-not-so-miserable-france/ [nytimes.com] ). Also I don't see the link between the state of our economy and us wanting health/safety... To me the euro currency is to blame.

Re:Confirms what I know about France (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year ago | (#45804415)

I'm sure that Vikingpower means Greece. The economy in Greece is really kicking off. Oh yeah, I have a really nice bridge for sale that would look great in your back yard!!

Outrageous. (1)

Adam Colley (3026155) | about a year ago | (#45804095)

Yeah, and I hope if the French do that, Yougle's action is to simply block their site in France.

The internet should not be subject to extortion by what is these days a minor country producing little of worth outside its own borders and it's not the first time either. Search engines can be prosecuted in France if they don't block access to Nazi content (Historical memorabilia included!) and let's not forget they were the first country to ban PGP.

They want to live in the stone age, fine, let them.

Re:Outrageous. (1)

Anarchix (3411975) | about a year ago | (#45804223)

"The internet", I am not sure what you mean by that. Google is making money in France, we are a sovereign country, we should be able to tax it. Now if you think that taxes equal to extortion, it is your problem, but don't blame the French for that. I don't see any reason why we shouldn't be able to tax a company just because it operates on the web.

Re:Outrageous. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804427)

Maybe I'm not getting it, but my reading of the article gave me the impression that this French thing want to tax Google for the business they do all over the world just because it might impact French citizens. I don't know if Google has an office in France, but if they do and all France is doing is tax that office for the business they do in that office then I think all would be fine with it.

Re:Outrageous. (1)

spongman (182339) | about a year ago | (#45804367)

They don't need to block the site at all. They just need to move the ad sales transactions out of France.

How about we agree to it for French videos? (1)

tlambert (566799) | about a year ago | (#45804117)

How about we agree to it for French videos originated in France (not Quebec, Louisiana, or elsewhere)?

If it was uploaded from France, it's subject to the tax, otherwise it's not? If it's a French Culture Tax, then obviously, it's because of the value to the world of the French Culture, right?

How the invisible hand of the market ... (1)

Coeurderoy (717228) | about a year ago | (#45804139)

People will whine about how the French government should not tax stuff to support local culture.

But any movie produced in any country larger than France (for instance US, India, China) can be paid for in the local market and then basically given away for free or as close to free as needed to kill the local production.

Add to this that the US is rabidly promoting "patriotism" which is a form of nationalism so that anything "foreign" is automatically suspect.
The various programs promoting this are ways to close the US market against "foreign influence".
(And BTW US "Patriotism" is being "Proud of being American", and unless you are a wet back Latino who on peril of his or her life crossed the border illegally than worked for many years with fear of deportation in his or her stomach and then finally get citizenship it is being proud of being born and nothing else.)

So the market is "not free and fair", and taxation is one way of offsetting the fact that it is inherently easier to make money when your market starts with 400M citizens instead of 65M.
And it is "nicer" than resort to propaganda, like forcing small children to "pledge to the flag", militarization of the society and such things.

And to finish, you can play a "fun game", look at "family oriented" blockbusters and try to read the "sub text" and what it says about your society.

Re:How the invisible hand of the market ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804249)

That's why you have import tax. You tax that, not videos on the Internet because that would just be stupid.

Re:How the invisible hand of the market ... (1)

Coeurderoy (717228) | about a year ago | (#45804311)

That's what it is, an "import tax", the vidéos are "imported" through the Internet....
And BTW the "freemarketer numbskulls" are trying to explain to the world that "import taxes are bad and naughty
and should be forbidden...." so it is only because in the 80s Français Mitterand insisted on an "exception culturelle" for cultural content ... against of course the outraged protest of the US representatives...

In practice it works this way : the "first world countries" go to poorer countries, and explain that if they ask import taxes for products we want to sell to them, we'll put import taxes on their natural ressources, and since the top dogs are sitting on that well they agree and help us screw their citizens, you do not need that many jobs to export petroleum...

France (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804389)

Pretty soon they'll find a way to tax the air you breath..

Just abandon this communist butt hole and live on. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45804477)

France become a communist butt hole.
Time to abandon it.
There is no place for business in a country of Marxism.
Let them live their 'fair' and poor^Wwealthy lives, surrounded by such worthy immigrants.

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