EU e-mail tax

A few days ago, word got out that the EU is thinking about introducing a tax on e-mails and SMS:

Lamassoure, a member of Jacques Chirac’s UMP party, is proposing to add a tax of about 1.5 cents on text or SMS messages and a 0.00001 cent levy on every e-mail sent. “This is peanuts, but given the billions of transactions every day, this could still raise an immense income,” he said. … Lamassoure argues that with billions of e-mails and texts sent around the world, it’s a novel and simple way to raise funds from new technology. “Exchanges between countries have ballooned, so everyone would understand that the money to finance the EU should come from the benefits engendered by the EU,” he said.

Apart from being absurd, hostile to both technological develpment and our communication culture, this story sounded remotely familiar. Why? Anyone remember this (German) April’s fool story ca 1998?


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