Maybe you read today about bloggers in Philadephia having to pay new fees for a "business privilege license" if their blog is monetized, regardless of whether they make any money or not.
If bloggers in the city limits of Philly have chosen to opt in for receiving advertising revenues, they will have to pay a $50.00 licensing fee yearly, or choose to pay a one-time $300.00 fee. The city states that it has a right to collect revenue from anyone "engaged in a business for profit" and, apparently, blogging is considered a business for profit if ad revenues are a possibility. (CityPaper) If the blogger has opted out of all ad revenues, then it is just a "hobby."
I think it is ridiculous to call it a business when most bloggers who choose to monetize might make only 20 cents to a few dollars over the course of a year. Suddenly, bloggers will have to purchase a business license and complete self employment tax returns to show that they made $1.27 in advertising revenues, but spent $50.00 (or $300.00) for a license to have the privilege to make that $1.27?
In the middle of a Depression..er...double-dip recession??
I understand that municipalities are hurting for money also, but to put a further burden on already struggling individuals because they might be making 20 cents or 10 dollars a year from allowing ads on their blog is ridiculous, in my opinion. Blogging, for most of us, is a hobby.
What the outcome will probably be is to stifle the economy even more, because bloggers who make 50 cents are going to stop accepting ads at all. So, the city will not be getting any money from them for a license, and the advertising on blogs framework will dry up as well. Way to go, government!
What do you think?