In­come made via so­cial me­dia sub­ject to tax

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - COMMENT - AN AR­TI­CLE

posted on the so­cial me­dia plat­form WeChat ti­tled Luo Er Sav­ing His Daugh­ter at­tracted do­na­tions of 2.6 mil­lion yuan ($400,000) be­fore the plat­form promised to re­fund the donors. Such ap­pre­ci­a­tion bonuses are tax­able in­come once they ex­ceed the ex­emp­tion thresh­old, China Youth Daily com­mented on Wed­nes­day:

In its user agree­ment, Ten­cent states that those who re­ceive ap­pre­ci­a­tion bonuses for their posts on its WeChat plat­form are re­spon­si­ble to pay taxes and fees, if any, them­selves. This means Ten­cent has no sub­sti­tute role in tax li­a­bil­ity for the posts.

At present, authors pub­lish­ing via pub­lic WeChat ac­counts can of­ten make up to tens of thou­sands of yuan a month, plus any rev­enue they get from ad­ver­tis­ers. If their rev­enue ex­ceeds the thresh­old for ex­emp­tion from per­sonal in­come tax, they have a le­gal obli­ga­tion to pay tax.

If there is no suf­fi­cient su­per­vi­sion of their in­comes, they are un­likely to vol­un­tar­ily re­veal how much they make know­ing they will be taxed on it. For the tax au­thor­i­ties, the cost of ac­tive en­force­ment would be too great.

In or­der to main­tain the se­ri­ous­ness and au­thor­ity of the tax law, the tax­a­tion au­thor­ity and Ten­cent should work to­gether to in­tro­duce an ef­fec­tive means of au­to­mat­i­cally de­duct­ing pay­ments from tax­able rev­enues made via the plat­form.

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