Quebec finance minister Carlos Leitao says the provincial government is prepared to impose a sales tax on SVODs in 2018 (with or without the feds). I used to (naively) be for “the tax” until I realized its a tax for consumers. I’ve always dreamed of a tax (contribution, quota – Flora MacDonald style) based on sales that would come out of Netflix’s (or any major players’) profits – not OUR pockets. Maybe that’s what the 500 million / 5 years pledge announced by Netflix a few weeks ago was all about. One way or another, (quota or pledge) I think it would be fair – say beneficial – for all concerned that, those who stand to make great profits from Canadian consumers be much obliged thank you, to channel funds back into original Québecois and Canadian content production. If that’s what Netflix is really doing, hats off to them – Bravo! Now its high time the US Majors stepped up to repent their greedy ways.
Here are two very informative articles by Michael Geist that helped clarify the issue for me.
Netflix Canada and the Misleading Claims About “Level Playing Fields”
Think There Should be a Netflix Tax?: Why There is Nothing Stopping Canadian Subscribers From Paying Today