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Old 01-12-2015, 10:08 AM   #1
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Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

As of nowadays, only a few countries, such as Great Britain have understood that things as poker should be “single-taxed” at the source (aka “Rake”). However, even there the newest progress regarding taxation goes into a dangerous direction.

At the WSOP, some countries are “triple-taxed”. They pay rake, taxes in the US and taxes in their original country, making WSOP events unplayable with an ROI < 100%.Why is poker taxation, especially in the US, as unfair as today? It’s rather simple, poker players don’t have any influence in politics. On top of that, they don’t fight for others to understand some concepts about the game, which I’m trying to outline in the following paragraphs.

1) Poker players bring the capital
World class tennis players such as Federer or Nadal win price money and pay lots of taxes on their winnings, so poker players should do the same, shouldn’t they? Not at all, since tennis players don’t contribute anything to the price money (One could argue that they do, since viewers come to see them). However, poker players bring the whole capital themselves, when a price sum is generated. If it was somebody else raising that price money, then poker should be indeed heavily taxed. I’m aware that our top professionals in tennis are creating a lot more value to the world by being role models for our future generations. I’m not questioning that by any means with that comparison.

2) Poker players are like shareholders at the stock market
In Switzerland for example, it is possible to keep the “winnings” when shares go up in value. Unless proven to be doing this professionally, nobody is ever taxed at all. Only interests are taxed, but not the gain in capital. They can make millions in gains without doing more than pressing a button in their e-banking account (I also think, given a certain capital, stocks are much easier money than poker).
Poker players, on the other hand, should pay taxes on the same gain in capital, no matter how much expertise they have. I still don’t understand how high stakes cash-game regs don’t complain that much. When they have an upswing of 500’000$, they have to tax 50’000$. If they have a downswing of 450’000$ the following year, they are breakeven. Of course, this can happen for a company as well, but we all know variance is never as high in other scenarios and people can protect themselves having the right structure as a company.

3) Rake should be not regarded as a service, it’s a tax and double-taxation is killing the game long-term.
While it would be totally okay to tax poker in each country if we could play it for free (or for a monthly service fee of 19.90$), it is clearly not when we already paid taxes to play online. Some people say that rake is nothing else than a service we pay for. It’s rather obvious that this is plain wrong, as rake increases (in absolute $) with the level of buy-in.

4) What can we as players do to play in a sustainable poker market?
First of all, we should stop supporting double-taxation. I’m not saying we can change it for good, it’s utopic, but I know too many players who are delusional about the effect on double-taxation on the poker market. It’s pure poison that’s not happening anywhere else in a fully developed economy.
Second, we should try to influence poker regulation, because it’s coming no matter what we do. Pokerstars and other sites will be paying some of the taxes for players, but on the other hand might increase rake. Our goal should be that they pay our taxes and not increase rake as the poker market is getting tougher. That way, we can avoid double-taxation someday.

What do you guys think?
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Old 01-12-2015, 10:31 AM   #2
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

*Politicians are the worst enemy of the future of poker

FYT
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Old 01-12-2015, 11:13 AM   #3
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

ya, it ****ing sucks. paid enough poker taxes to build a palace
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Old 01-13-2015, 02:01 PM   #4
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

Quote:
Originally Posted by 39suited View Post
*Politicians are the worst enemy of the future of poker

FYT
Yes they are. Mostly discriminating minorities as poker players as much as they can in order to benefit themselves. But instead of just letting things happen we might want to work with providers as pokerstars when regulation takes place (as a community here).

What I am also interested are players, who are actually not having the same opinion than me above. I know players personally who actually think the situation is okay at the moment and that it's normal that poker players must be taxed twice or three times.
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Old 01-13-2015, 05:01 PM   #5
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

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Originally Posted by 39suited View Post
*Politicians are the worst enemy of the future of poker

FYT
Politicians are the worst enemy of the future...
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Old 01-13-2015, 05:59 PM   #6
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

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Originally Posted by MiXeR View Post
Politicians were the worst enemy in the past and are the worst enemy of the present and future...
FYF.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:00 PM   #7
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

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Originally Posted by DuFisch View Post
It’s rather simple, poker players don’t have any influence in politics.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:04 PM   #8
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

^wp
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:06 PM   #9
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

Im pretty sure we just need some poker-radicals with bombs and guns, we can use fear and terror to get our wishes met!

violence is the only thing the corrupt politician will understand.
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:12 PM   #10
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

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Originally Posted by WateryBoil View Post
Im pretty sure we just need some poker-radicals with bombs and guns, we can use fear and terror to get our wishes met!

violence is the only thing the corrupt politician will understand.
You gonna remember to turn those guns on the corrupt population that puts them in power too?
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Old 01-13-2015, 06:28 PM   #11
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

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Originally Posted by WateryBoil View Post
Im pretty sure we just need some poker-radicals with bombs and guns, we can use fear and terror to get our wishes met!

violence is the only thing the corrupt politician will understand.
if that were true the entire jewish world population would be in concentration camps or dead and it would be a criminal offense to criticize Islam or for women to go outside not wearing a burka, It would also be a criminal offense for a women to be raped I don't mean to rape the women I mean she would be in trouble for been raped.

if someone was stupid enough to do this they would first forfitt there life by been killed or spend the rest it in confinment dont know of many maryters so that some other people can take money from other randoms who they do not know.

to succeed you need to say things in the right way, eg if you turned round to a potential employer and said you did not want to work over time etc forget the job you have shown the wrong attitude if you turned round and said you believe in a work life balance you might get away with it. (my best advice dont bring the topic up unless your asked or actively want to hint that youd do overtime happily.)

however its all about spin and saying it in the right way not one of my talents, but i recognize the art exists.

taxation isnt the worst enemy of poker the fact is the poker sites will only charge what they can get away with. It does not matter if the money goes straight to there back pocket or to tax etc, people are only willing to continue to play for a certain rate and once that rate is changed they may not continue.

obviously with taxes poker sites can make less then before but in most cases they are still doing very well for themselves. just not as well as before. they can hike the costs to put them at the same level but then they will lose business. taxes is irrelevant the poker sites do not exist to pay the players a wage they exist to make money. grinders are important to the poker sites and play the majority of hands lose the grinders and you lose the majority of your profit.

the real threat is technology, everyone knows bots will eventually become sophisticated enough to crush humans at all forms of poker and humans will never stand a chance until or unless the singularity occurs (mankind becoming cyborgs) at which point the games we play will be far far more complicated then poker.

I have already emailed pokerstars a realistic suggestion about surviving and keeping online poker going at this point and there is hints they may have listened or already thought of it.
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Old 01-13-2015, 07:19 PM   #12
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

santa taught me all that
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Old 01-13-2015, 07:52 PM   #13
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

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Originally Posted by LukeSilver View Post

taxes is irrelevant the poker sites do not exist to pay the players a wage they exist to make money. grinders are important to the poker sites and play the majority of hands lose the grinders and you lose the majority of your profit.

.
The point that you're missing is, that poker players actually take money OFF the site and what they tax is not reentering the "market" anymore. Therefore a lot of $ are drained out of the market not only by pokerstars, but also through taxation. If fish who randomly won 1 million with spin and go have to pay 150k$ in taxes, those $ will never see poker again, but will be kept by governments. That is a serious issue, especially at the WSOP nowadays, not being adressed enough...

(out of the 60million$, 12-15 million$ are drained each year in the Main event). If the same happens to online poker, our winrates will be all reduced severely.
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Old 01-13-2015, 08:00 PM   #14
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

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Originally Posted by LukeSilver View Post
if ...

the real threat is technology, everyone knows bots will eventually become sophisticated enough to crush humans at all forms of poker and humans will never stand a chance until or unless the singularity occurs (mankind becoming cyborgs) at which point the games we play will be far far more complicated then poker.
...

.
Just a question, ..... you anticipate that cyborgs would play games ?
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Old 01-13-2015, 08:42 PM   #15
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Re: Taxation is the worst enemy of the future of poker

OP is correct, taxation and regulations will be the end of the new online poker. If not done right the new online poker will be like a lottery or pit game.
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