REGISTER -- Could the Dutch become a nation without iPods? That's what Faultline suggests in an article about a proposed tax on MP3 players in the Netherlands that could devastate sales of hard disk players, and set up international waves over copyright legislation. The tax is being proposed by the Stichting Thuiskopie foundation, and is set to become law in the Netherlands in a few short months unless the European Commission finds a reason to intervene. It is unlikely that will happen, as it has failed to come up with a policy for levy taxation so far.
The Dutch legislation could result in surcharges of €3.28 per gigabyte, which adds €180 to the price of a top end iPod. This creeping taxation is already underway in Germany where consumers pay a levy on PC hard drives. The Register says, "If it is left in place ... the tax will come to far outweigh not just the cost of the drive, but the cost of the device. Under this Netherlands law, if it were extended to the PC, the cost of 1,000 GB would be €3,280." The tax would apply to the Nokia N91, which debuts with a 4GB drive onboard.
Faultline -- "Dutch plans for iPod tax could kill MP3 industry"