Social media activists will have to pay due taxes

social media influencer holding like
(Photo: Envato Elements)
AMMAN —  Social media sites have been abuzz over the past few days over the news that the Income and Sales Tax Department (ISTD) is ready to collect taxes from all social media activists and bloggers who have defaulted on payments.اضافة اعلان

The news was received with mixed reactions.

The ISTD has assigned a team, made up of its employees, to ensure that social media activists and bloggers who make money from their activities online, income that is taxable, submit tax returns and pay the due taxes.

ISTD consultant Moussa Al-Tarawneh said on Thursday that the department has several ways to follow up on the financial revenues of “social media celebrities”, check the numbers and compare them with their financial disclosures.

Tarawneh said that the department will use all available methods to collect the taxes due by celebrities and social media activists, “fairly, based on the real amounts they obtain”.

Reactions from activists and bloggers on social media, interviewed by Jordan News regarding the decision, varied. While some said that they encourage the decision because the outcome will benefit the national interest, others criticized it, saying that the government does not provide any assistance to these people, and therefore making money from them is “illogical”.

Travel blogger Hind Khlaifat told Jordan News that “I strongly support this step because the taxes derived from the money earned from advertisements on social media sites are public funds like any other source of income,” and it is the government’s legitimate right to tax them.

“We ask the government to give us full services, and when it does not, we criticize it. If we want to benefit from services, we must give the government what is rightfully its as well, including paying taxes and financial dues,” she said.

Blogger Zayna Hamarneh told Jordan News: “I definitely support the decision. Everyone must pay taxes and it is unreasonable that some workers should pay tax and others do not, while everyone earns money, regardless of the source of income.”

She added “I have paid tax, since I became taxable, as a Jordanian citizen and as a company owner, and I always ask all those I work with to deduct the amount of tax from me and to have it supplied to me after a while in the tax return”.

“I do support each and every decision that controls and organizes the social media sector, which is still new to all of us,” she said.

Actor and social media activist Ahmad Massad told Jordan News that he “deeply” regrets the decision, especially since “the government, represented by its various institutions, does not provide any kind of services to activists and does not support them”.

“If the government does not provide any kind of services to us, why do we have to pay taxes,” he asked.

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