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Social media tax: Would it work?

Thursday 23 August 2018

LABOUR leader Jeremy Corbyn has suggested a tax on social media companies such as Facebook, Google and Netflix, to help pay for the BBC. Dr Alex Fenton, Social Media expert from the University of Salford Business School, questions whether the move would work.

Dr Fenton said: “In principle, Corbyn is right, the massive tech firms are serving to generate large volumes of money from the masses for a smaller number of wealthy individuals. His idea therefore would help to re-balance this. In practise, this is unlikely to happen. These companies are already too powerful. It’s like shooting a tank with a pea shooter. 

“We’re set on a path where these tech companies will continue to grow in power and they will resist any substantial challenges to control them and will invest in other journalistic projects which they can control. 

“However, this move by Corbyn I imagine will be popular with the British public at least and it is good to see some challenge to this dominance, however small. The amount of money these companies are generating is huge and is increasing inequality in our society. 

“There is a cynicism among the public about the huge profits being made so you can see why it seems a good idea.”

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Sam Wood

0161 295 5361