France Wants to Tax the Collection of Private Data on the Internet

Eric Pfanner, writing for The New York Times:

The report published Friday said a tax on data collection was justified on grounds that users of services like Google and Facebook are, in effect, working for these companies without pay by providing the personal information that lets them sell advertising.

I can empathize with the dilemma facing governments today. The world economy, in general, has not been good and the related tax revenue has been impacted.  However, that doesn't excuse naked cash-grabs like this proposal. Trying to argue that users of Internet services are 'working' for those companies is like trying to argue that the act of cooking a hamburger is a form of 'manufacturing'.

As it has been said, "The only things certain in life are death and taxes."