TIGA Urges UK Government to Reconsider DCMS Elimination

April 23, 2012 -

UK video game industry trade group TIGA is advising the UK government against any plans to abolish the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). The recommendation to abolish the DCMS as part of a tax cut package was part of a recent report from the Institute of Economic Affairs.

TIGA CEO Richard Wilson says that the elimination of the department would save very little money.

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Federal Court Gives Amazon a Win Against Colorado Sales Tax Reporting Law

April 5, 2012 -

A federal judge has ruled in favor of Amazon in a case it filed against the state of Colorado for trying to collect sales tax under a new law. The court found that because the company didn't have a physical presence in the state that Colorado didn't have a right to collect and that its new law ran afoul of the Interstate commerce clause in the Constitution - specifically, legislation forcing out-of-state retailers to report their customers' purchases to the state's tax authority.

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Georgia Senate Approves Bill to Cap Video Game Industry Tax Credits

March 29, 2012 -

The Georgia Senate has voted to limit the amount of the 30 tax credits the video game industry gets to $25 million and to restrict the credit allowed to individual companies to a maximum of $5 million. Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers said that the change allows for funds to spread around to smaller outfits rather than being used up by bigger companies. The new cap is a compromise from the original bill which sought to eliminate the tax credit altogether.

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Quantic Dream CEO: UK Tax Relief Saved UK Game Development Community

March 22, 2012 -

Paris, France-based game development studio Quantic Dream is thankful for yesterday’s announcement that the United Kingdom will offers its development community much-needed tax relief. Quantic Dream CEO Guillaume de Fondaumière went so far as to say that the UK games industry was facing a "tangible risk of collapsing" if the government hadn't intervened. de Fondaumière, who is also the chairman of the European Game Developers Federation, hopes that this will cause other governments in Europe to follow the UK's lead.

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UK Video Game Industry Delighted that Tax Breaks are in New Budget

March 21, 2012 -

Today the British government announced that tax breaks for the video game industry are part of the 2013 budget (thanks beemoh). Chancellor George Osborne announced plans to introduce corporate tax relief beginning in April 2013 for various sectors including video games, animation and high-end television industries. Osborne hopes that these tax breaks will "make the UK the technology centre of Europe."

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Connecticut Senate Bill Aims to Tax Your Video Games and More

March 14, 2012 -

The Connecticut State Senate is considering a bill that would add taxes to digital goods. The "stated purpose of the bill, is "to include digital movies, books, music, ringtones, audio and video works and similar downloadable products as subject to the sales and use tax." If passed, the bill would take effect July 1, 2012, and would apply to sales occurring on or after that date.

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Germany Considers 'Drudge' Tax

March 13, 2012 -

The Washington Times has an opinion piece that takes a shot at German Chancellor Angela Merkel's administration over what they are calling a proposed "Drudge Tax." The reference is to conservative Matt Drudge's popular web site The Drudge Report, which aggregates news from all over the web. While the flavor of The Drudge Report may not sit well with many, the concern with a new proposal being pushed by Merkel's administration is that it will levy taxes on web sites that aggregate content.

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Sony Accidently Overcharges Account Holders Sales Tax

February 25, 2012 -

One of our readers (who wishes to remain anonymous) passed along an email from Sony Entertainment Network customer service on Friday saying that the company had accidently overcharged them sales tax related to the period between November 18, 2010 and April 11, 2011. While his email noted that they overcharged him by 0.06 cents, we have seen at least one other email saying that the company overcharged a customer by $9.24.

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Rocksteady Co-Founder Urges UK Government To Offer Tax Incentives

February 9, 2012 -

Rocksteady co-founder and game director Sefton Hill has called on the UK government to offer tax breaks to game studios before it’s too late. Hill says it is time for the UK to support its games studios to match the benefits offered overseas or risk losing them.

"A lot of my friends have moved abroad to get work; there's a real talent drain," Hill said in an interview with CVG. "Montreal is a central place for development and it's mainly because the tax breaks they give are so phenomenal."

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Oklahoma Lawmakers Introduces Bill to Tax Violent Video Games

February 1, 2012 -

An Oklahoma lawmaker has introduced a bill in the state legislature that would impose a tax on "violent video games" to help fight childhood obesity and bullying. Oklahoma State Representative William Fourkiller (D-Stilwell) introduced bill HB 2696, which would add a 1 percent tax on games rated Teen, Mature, and Adults Only by the ESRB. These funds would be used for fighting childhood obesity and bullying. 

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The UK Brain Drain to Canada, USA

January 19, 2012 -

According to a survey conducted by Games Investor Consulting, 41 percent of jobs lost in the United Kingdom between 2009 and 2011 relocated to other countries with tax codes and incentives that favored the video game and entertainment industry.

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Raspberry Pi Heads to Manufacturing... in China

January 11, 2012 -

The Raspberry Pi Foundation announced via its blog that it has begun the manufacturing process for its ARM GNU/Linux machine in Taiwan and China. Besides citing prohibitive UK taxes on electronic parts (there's no tax on products already assembled and shipped into the country), the group chose manufacturers in Asia because the turnaround will be three weeks - as opposed to thirteen weeks.

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CEA Changes Course on Internet Sales Tax Collection

December 14, 2011 -

In the late 1990's and early 2000's a politician proposing an internet sales tax would have been ridden out on a rail. It used to be that lawmakers were scared of the subject. Now even retail associations - some of which represent huge internet companies - say they support the idea. One of those trade groups, the Consumer Electronics Association, has changed sides this week.

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Online Retailers Have Different Takes on 'Marketplace Fairness Act'

November 10, 2011 -

Major online retailers are divided over a new legislation called The Marketplace Fairness Act that seeks to tackle the issue of charging sales tax for purchases made online. Right now states only require customers to pay a sales tax on purchases made online if the online retailer has a physical store address in the state. The problem for states that want to collect those revenues is that most online retailers like Amazon only have shipping or service centers in-state.

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TIGA Urges Scottish Government to Create 'Creative Content Fund'

October 24, 2011 -

TIGA has publicly urged the Scottish Government to create a Creative Content Fund to help Scottish developers. The fund would be designed to offer up £100,000 investment to developers for new projects, and allow them to get the money the group invested back once a project starts making significant revenue. The fund would only apply to games where the developer owned the IP as well.

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Ireland Plans Incentives to Lure Game Development to the Region

October 11, 2011 -

Ireland Prime Minister Enda Kenny announced this week a comprehensive plan to attract more game development companies to the country by means of flexible incentive packages. Newly formed trade organization Games Ireland supports the move and hopes it will change the culture of games development in the country. "All the biggest brands in the world are almost here now," Games Ireland's communications director Paul Hayes told GamesIndustry.biz. "We just need to change the narrative and the types of projects they're doing.

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TIGA CEO Calls on UK Government to Do More for Games Industry

October 6, 2011 -

In a guest editorial on the UK version of the Huffington Post, TIGA CEO Richard Wilson ask the British government to give the game industry a break ... a tax break.

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Star-Ledger Editorial Board Wags Collective Finger at EA over Taxes

September 13, 2011 -

The New Jersey Star-Ledger newspaper has a rather strongly-worded editorial about what they see as EA's over-manipulation of the United States Tax code. The op-ed piece, a response to the New York Times piece on Sunday that basically outed EA for its practices, calls on the U.S. government to end "unfair tax breaks" for big corporations and to offer those incentives to smaller, more-deserving start-ups.

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Amazon v. California, Round II

September 6, 2011 -

While Amazon might be on the precipice of usurping legislation passed earlier this year by the state of California with a voter referendum this November, lawmakers are on the attack. The New York Times chronicles the fight going on in California in this article, which is interesting because it pits traditional retail in the state against online retailers.

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TIGA Comments on Zurich Insurance Report Conclusions

August 31, 2011 -

UK video game industry trade group TIGA said today that high technology businesses in the region were at risk of a "brain drain and skill shortages," complicated and compounded by the existence of tax breaks in other countries. The group has long sought tax breaks and incentives for the video game industry, but the financial downturn and austerity measures in the UK forced the government to abandon any measures that were on the table at the time.

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TIGA Calls for Expanded R&D Tax Credits in the UK

August 22, 2011 -

UK video game industry trade group TIGA proposed today that the UK's Coalition Government should open the Small Firms R&D Tax Credit to promote "a high technology recovery and job creation in high technology industries." TIGA made the comments in response to a "consultation exercise" by HM Treasury on the R&D tax credits.

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The Power of Tax Breaks in Ontario's Technology Corridor

August 19, 2011 -

Members of Ontario's "Technology Corridor" attended Gamescom in Cologne, Germany to show their support for the culture, work ethic and incentives the Canadian region provides to developers. Over the past two years, Canada's gaming industry has expanded 11 percent annually and is forecasted to grow 17 percent in each of the next two years. Executives from the Ontario Technology Corridor were at Gamescom to demonstrate the province's "winning combination" of talent and tax credits.

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Texas Film Commission Increases Incentives for Video Game Industry

August 11, 2011 -

Texas wants more video game companies creating jobs in the state, so in an effort to make the state a more enticing location, the Texas Film Commission announced plans to increase incentives for the gaming industry to a level equivalent to what is currently given to film and television projects. Under the new rules, video game companies will be able to apply for grants that will give back up to 15 percent "of eligible in-state spending paid to Texas residents." This is a five percent increase over previous incentives.

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Gov. Rick Perry Hails EA Sports Expansion in Austin

July 19, 2011 -

On Monday Texas Governor (and presumed future presidential candidate) Rick Perry spoke at a press conference at EA’s BioWare Austin campus. The Governor, along with top executives of Electronic Arts confirmed that the company plans to expand operations in Austin - and in the process - adding 300 future jobs in the area. EA plans to expand its EA Sports division in the region and will hire 150 full-time positions, along with an additional 150 "contract workers."

During the official announcement Monday, Gov. Rick Perry said that Texas is "the perfect place" for video game development to thrive.

 

"'If it’s in the game, it’s in the game,' and right now Texas is where the game is being played," Perry told the press in attendance. "Much like the video gaming industry, our state is built on the foundation of competition."

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Tax Wars: Online v. Brick-and-Mortar Retailers

July 18, 2011 -

A war is brewing in California (and beyond) between traditional retail and online retailers on sales tax. For years politicians said they would not tax the internet, but a recent change in laws has made it so that Amazon.com has to collect sales tax from any affiliate doing business in the state. While traditional brick-and-mortar retailers applauded this change (they see it as leveling an uneven playing field) online retailers are, to turn a phrase, pissed off. Among other efforts, Amazon.com is seeking to rally anti-tax Americans by proposing a voter referendum in California to overturn the new state law.

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Game Industry Tax Relief Takes Center Stage at Develop

July 17, 2011 -

Vincent Scheurer of the London-based law firm Sarassin LLP passed us a note to let everyone know that he will be talking about game industry tax breaks in the UK at Develop. He will be presenting a talk called "Who’s Afraid of Games Tax Relief?" at the Develop conference in Brighton next week.

"This talk will consider, amongst other things, the arguments for and against games tax relief, together with an analysis of the lobbying from within the games industry which has recently been disclosed via the Freedom of Information Act," Scheurer wrote in an email to GamePolitics.

Scheurer's talk will commence at 4.30pm on Wednesday, July 20. Anyone with a free Expo pass may attend the talk. Scheurer says that he expects a "lively debate on the pros and cons of games tax relief."

You can find out more about Scheurer and his work by visiting his firm's web site.


Louisiana Enhances State Digital Media Tax Credits

July 12, 2011 -

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has signed a bill into law that improves the state's existing tax credits for the entertainment industry - which includes game developers. The addendum to the state's Digital Media Tax Credit will soon offer game developers doing business in Louisiana benefits as a refundable credit rather than a transferable credit. This allows those that are eligible for it to receive a cash rebate if the credit amount ends up being more than the outstanding tax liability for the year. Of course, the law still gives game developers a 25 percent tax credit on software production in the state and a 35 percent credit for state payroll taxes devoted to software development.

Louisiana policy makers say that these tax credits have been "instrumental" in attracting large companies into the state. For example, EA recently announced plans for an expansion of its game testing facility on the LSU campus.

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TIGA Warns of UK Development 'Brain Drain'

July 11, 2011 -

UK video game industry trade organization TIGA issued a warning today that the video games industry in the region continues to experience a "brain drain of skilled development staff." TIGA said that this warning is based on the results of a new survey of 104 UK games businesses which showed that 20 percent of respondents had lost staff to foreign countries over the previous 12 months.

Many of those highly skilled workers have been lost to Canada because companies there can afford to hire and commit funds to research and development due to generous government tax breaks and incentives.. The Entertainment Software Association of Canada recently said that Canada's industry has been "successful in attracting investment and skilled personnel from jurisdictions like the United Kingdom.."

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GDAA: Tax Credits Will Make Australia Tops in Five Years

July 6, 2011 -

Game Developers Association of Australia predicts that in five year's time Australia will be one of the top game development territories in the world. Tony Reed, CEO of the Game Developers Association of Australia, credits the future benefits of the Australian Government's proposed research and development tax credits.

The new A$1.8 billion ($1.89 billion) research and development tax credit legislation will give developers a 45 percent refundable tax credit. The credit is meant for companies that have a turnover of less than A$20 million, a requirement that many Australian game development studios fall into. Reed says that this new tax credit bill will help the local video game industry become one of the top three game development territories in the world and he hopes this can be achieved in the next five years. Australian studios have to register with the government to apply for the tax credit and are required to show proof of research and development.

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California to Out-of-State Online Retailers: Collect State Sales Tax

June 30, 2011 -

California has told out-of-state online retailers to start collecting sales tax for customers residing in the state Beginning July 1. This includes Amazon.com, Overstock.com, and GameStop.com. Beginning Friday this new requirement for retailers takes effect, along with a 1-percentage-point drop in the tax. The new tax collection scheme is projected to raise $317 million a year in new state and local government revenue.

Besides the slight cost to California customers, there are other adverse effects for companies connected with Amazon and similar retailers. Amazon and online retailer Overstock.com have reportedly told thousands of California Internet marketing affiliates that they will stop paying commissions for referrals of click-through customers. This is due to the fact that the new requirement applies only to online sellers based out of state that have a connection to California, such as workers, warehouses or offices.

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Should 'Hatred' have been removed from Steam Greenlight?:

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Matthew WilsonI hope its released to netflix or amazon12/18/2014 - 12:11am
prh99Basically they've given every tin pot dictator and repressive regime a blue print how to conduct censorship abroad. The hecklers veto wins again. At least when it comes to Sony and the four major theater chains.12/17/2014 - 11:55pm
MaskedPixelante"It's not OUR fault that our game doesn't work, it's YOUR fault for having so many friends."12/17/2014 - 9:48pm
Matthew Wilsonapparently tetris did not work because he has a full friends list12/17/2014 - 9:21pm
WonderkarpSo Sony cancelled the release of the Interview. was it ever confirmed that the Sony hacking was done because of that specific movie?12/17/2014 - 8:54pm
MaskedPixelanteWow, Ubisoft went four for four, I didn't think it was actually possible.12/17/2014 - 8:37pm
MechaTama31Oh, ok, I was mixing up "on Greenlight" and "Greenlit".12/17/2014 - 8:23pm
Matthew Wilson@phx you beat me to it. how do you screw up tetris?! my ubisoft this is just stupid. no one should ever preorder a ubisoft game again! ps people should never preorder any game regardles of dev.12/17/2014 - 6:28pm
PHX Corphttp://www.ign.com/videos/2014/12/17/what-the-heck-is-wrong-with-tetris-ps4 I give up on ubisoft12/17/2014 - 6:01pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://comicbook.com/blog/2014/08/16/exclusive-original-unaltered-cut-of-star-wars-trilogy-to-be-rele/ Yeah, this'll never happen.12/17/2014 - 5:03pm
NeenekoThey have and exercise control over which games are allowed on their privately controlled 'open forum'. Their endorsement is fairly minimal since it is only 'we do not reject this', but it is still an endorsement of sorts.12/17/2014 - 3:58pm
NeenekoHistorically there have been issues with libraries allowing some groups but not others. Perhaps 'endorsement' is too strong a word, but their editorial control IS a preapproval process, even if the standards are pretty minimal.12/17/2014 - 3:56pm
E. Zachary KnightLet's put this a different way. My local library allows any group to reserve and use multipurpose rooms. That does not mean that the Library endorses all events that take place in those rooms.12/17/2014 - 12:54pm
E. Zachary KnightValve's editorial control comes from removing problem games and accepting games to Steam. They make no claim over any games otherwise.12/17/2014 - 12:52pm
E. Zachary KnightNeeneko, It is not at all a form of endorsement. Grenlight is an open forum for game developers to pitch their game to Valve/Steam and Steam users. Does Valve have some editorial control? Yes, but not to the point that they preapprove games.12/17/2014 - 12:51pm
Neeneko@EZK - I disagree. Greenlight is built off Valve's brand. While not an explicit endorsement, it is a form of it, otherwise Greenlight would have no value over other platforms.12/17/2014 - 12:05pm
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.latino-review.com/news/exclusive-viola-davis-bags-amanda-waller-role-in-suicide-squad Latino Review says Viola Davis will be Amanda Waller. History of Latino Review says "wait for a REAL news site to confirm".12/17/2014 - 10:48am
PHX Corphttp://www.polygon.com/2014/12/17/7407869/assassins-creed-unity-glitch-broken-problems-xbox-one-patch -Facepalm- Screwup means Assassin's Creed Unity's patch is the 40GB full game on Xbox One12/17/2014 - 10:17am
PHX Corphttp://www.theverge.com/2014/12/16/7401769/the-mpaa-wants-to-strike-at-dns-records-piracy-sopa-leaked-documents Sony leaks reveal Hollywood is trying to break DNS, the backbone of the internet12/17/2014 - 10:05am
E. Zachary KnightA Game being on Greenlight is not an endorsement of said game by Valve, Steam or anyone related to Valve or Steam. Greenlight is a combined sales pitch to Steam and its users.12/17/2014 - 9:51am
 

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