Category Archives: digital media

Twitter, Taxes and Turkish Prison

Twitter, Taxes and Turkish Prison

With conflict flaring over censorship of Twitter in Turkey around the time of March elections, the Turkish government has reportedly demanded that the company open an office there. Tim Worstall over at PandoDaily writes:

Why not just stick one employee there, as an “office” and make the local government happy? The answer being that having an office in a country changes the tax position completely and the important phrase to understand here for non-accounting types is “permanent establishment.”

Tim rightly points out that taxation of Internet businesses that flow across porous international borders is a thorny subject.  The largest, most successful services are understandable targets for tax authorities.  Nevertheless, in the case of countries like Turkey, I think the discussion of taxes, while valid, is mostly political theater. The main issue in my opinion is free speech, or rather the desire to manage and squash it. Continue Reading

Copywrong: Brilliantly Disruptive Startups from Napster to Pinterest

The law simply hasn’t kept pace with the largest upheaval in the distribution and consumption of content in human history, which has taken place in less than two decades since the consumer Internet was born in 1994. To a large extent, members of the general public have little idea what copyright is, how it works, or how it applies online, if at all. Continue Reading

When Good Legal Advice Is Worth $10 Million An Hour

When Good Legal Advice Is Worth $10 Million An Hour

One of the highest profile liquidity events in the first half of 2012 was Facebook’s deal to acquire Instagram for $1 billion. The popular mobile photo-sharing service should fit well into Facebook’s growth strategy as a public company, but its eye-popping valuation — more than that of the New York Times, for those keeping score… Continue Reading

Evaluating the Risks in Facebook’s IPO: Would You Invest?

Facebook is forthcoming about the challenges of mobile: No revenue currently generated from mobile advertising; unclear how much mobile use could be monetized; failure to solve this puzzle combined with a dramatic shift toward mobile usage could be a serious problem; and they don’t control the iOS and Android platforms. Frankly, if there were one thing that persuaded me not to invest in FB at current valuations, this would be it. Continue Reading

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