Internet Sales Tax

Marketplace Fairness Act: eBay and Etsy Get Political. Where Do You Stand?

by Mark Faggiano

It feels like everywhere you turn, there’s plenty of chatter about the Marketplace Fairness Act.

Some of the biggest channels for online sellers are getting involved. Just this week eBay and Etsy both asked for your help to defeat the bill.

In their post on the Main Street blog, eBay asks that you contact you local representative on congress, asking them to vote against the bill. Here’s an excerpt,

We believe that Congress needs to protect small business retailers by including a robust exemption for small businesses with fewer than 50 employees or less than $10 million annually in out-of-state sales.  Many of our customers would fall under this exemption, and we want our customers to not just survive, but to thrive. And that’s why we’re asking for your help as an eBay Inc. employee.

The fact that eBay is opposed to the bill is not news. They’ve never been shy about it. Between this post and emails to all of their sellers earlier this week eBay is clearly using every option available to crowdsource opposition.

Etsy is also asking sellers to get involved. Etsy doesn’t seem to have an issue with getting the sales tax system right. They just don’t want it done this way,

We at Etsy support the intent of the legislation, to help states reap the tax they are owed, but feel it will unnecessarily burden small businesses. Most Etsy sellers work from home and don’t have the administrative resources to comply with the law. That’s why the “small seller exception” included in the bill is so important. We believe in pushing that exception as high as possible, not only to protect sellers now, but to give their businesses room to grow down the line.

What are your thoughts on this issue? How closely are you following it? Will you take the time to contact your local representative? Interested to hear your thoughts in the comment section.

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