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Re: can I sell fedora?

On Mon, 25 Oct 2004, Andrey Andreev wrote:

> Timothy Payne wrote:
> > On Sun, 2004-10-24 at 23:04, me phillipgeorge com wrote:
> [snip]
> > Excuse me, but why are we helping this guy cheat on his taxes?  Sorry
> > but I haven't finished my first cup of coffee yet.
> From what I've read in the thread, it seems that this guy wants to
> exploit a loophole in a law, created to subsidise sales of MS
> Windows with taxpayer money. The law seems to assume all OSes are
> commercial, i.e Windows in general, and pays back a part of the
> price for the license. I find this disgusting. As far as OP can keep
> his actions legal, I don't find him getting some money from the
> state any more ethically disturbing, than MS getting them. It's a
> stupid law, that's all.

there's a pretty sizable difference.  if you're paying microsoft for
the OS, then money is actually changing hands, and microsoft has a
legal obligation to declare that money as income for tax purposes,
which means you *do* have the right to claim the purchase price as an
expense.  nothing surprising there.

what the OP was suggesting is creating a completely fictitious
transaction strictly for tax purposes, which could backfire in a
couple spectacular ways.

first, if the OP got a friend to "sell" him the OS at some
artificially-inflated price, then it stands to reason that that friend
would have to declare that same amount as taxable income.  that would
seem to negate the value of the entire transaction.  any benefit the
OP would get in *paying* for the OS would be lost, given that the
seller would have to declare *getting* *paid* for the OS.  zero-sum
game, no?  but it could conceivably get worse.

if the government looked into this closely and determined that the
entire transaction was a case of simple tax fraud, the *seller* might
still be liable for the taxable income, but the *buyer* might be
prosecuted for tax fraud, *as* *well* as losing any tax benefit from
the transaction.

in short, my advice to the OP:  go for it, and let us know how it
turns out.  we all really want to know at this point. :-)


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