updated 09:50 am EDT, Tue June 24, 2008
Spain adopts 'iPod tax'
Spain will be one of the next countries to adopt a so-called "iPod tax," Billboard writes. Formally known as the "digital canon," the tax will go in effect on July 1st, and apply to all electronic devices (and their media) capable of storing, copying or recording sound and images, even to the extent of applying to printers, scanners and ink cartridges. The fee levied against manufacturers will vary depending on the particular device; while ellphones with MP3 playback will warrant a levy of €1.10, dedicated MP3 players will cost an extra €3.15 each.
The tax is meant to compensate artists and publishers for the alleged costs of piracy, but has been extremely controversial in Spain, and fought against by the likes of electronics makers and consumer groups. It was in fact intended to be imposed 18 months ago, but was delayed due to debate.
Under the terms of the digital canon, at least €110.2 million must be collected in the first year, but not more than €117.8 million; if the amount breaks these limits, the culture ministry must make revisions. Internet User president Victor Domingo suggests that the tax may pull in as much as €225 million though, and that collection societies will not be monitored to determine if money is being properly distributed.