Taxation – The New Technetium?

I tend to poke the odd bit of fun at Gevlon Goblin, but the one area in which I respect his efforts is with numbers. Don’t get me wrong, I still think he’s a little bit Trumpie, a little bit Reagan too, but the boy knows how to crunch numbers.

Well, he just crunched some more, and anyone with a vested or even mild interest in sovereignty null-sec best take a look at his taxation post. For brevity’s sake, I’ve quoted the meat and potatoes below (English is a second language for our little green man, so let’s poke no fingers at grammar here, please):

“First question: how much broker fees people pay now? The February economy report says that people spent 9.8T on taxes and 5.9T on broker fees. Let’s assume that the average sale was done with has Accounting 4. This is reasonable, since max-skilled traders are responsible for most sales and training Accounting to 3-4 isn’t hard. This means 0.9% average tax. With that, the average broker fee was 0.54%.

These numbers mean that after the patch the same people will pay 1.5% transaction tax and 4.15%!!! broker fee. If it wouldn’t affect traded volumes (it obviously will), people would pay 16.3T transaction tax and 45.3T broker fee. Let me put these numbers in perspective: the total ratting was 33.9T and the total faucets were 71.5T. You see that paying such money is impossible. The only explanation is that CCP means it to be impossible to force people to trade in citadels. Citadel owners can set any broker fee and that fee is not an ISK sink, since it goes to the owner. If everyone would trade on citadels, the new tax wouldn’t be much more than current tax+broker fee.

About 90% of trading is done in Jita, Amarr, Dodixie, Rens and Hek (see market value by region graph). Since the trade hub citadel must be competitive for max-skilled traders, the player-set broker fee can’t be more than 3%. Assuming someone would set such citadels and divert trading to them, his income would be 32.8T. Again: the trade hub citadel owner would make as much ISK as all ratters combined, without even loging in.”

I read it a few times, as maths and I have an understanding; I don’t bother it, and it doesn’t bother me. However, this put a bit of a chill up my spine, so I hope I’m wrong. Before I left 30Plus, I remember helping a member who had fat-fingered a market listing and oopsied a…large…amount of ISK down the dunny. That was when I learned that these trade taxes are paid to NPCs, currently. It would seem, as things stand, the citadel owner will soon receive this previously recycled ISK.

Fair enough, too. Those things are ludicrously expensive, so anyone banging one together should cop some wallet to compensate. Except for the things that Goblin points out there, that is. See, a while back, when these citadels were still being revealed to us plebs of non NDA molestation level privilege, I remember saying that I wouldn’t be surprised to see Mittens plonk one down in Jita. Well, he can’t do that, but he can put one next door. If he then directs all Emporium traffic to that address, technetium moons will look decidedly last year, won’t they?

Never mind high-sec, though. What about the null-sec trade hubs? Every time the Emporium suicides another “Didn’t want those -enter expensive space trinket name here- anyway” fleet, the coffers of the big boys will fill to overflowing. Every single item that currently sees large sums of ISK removed from the game on a daily basis via taxation, will see huge piles of ISK (just look at those flaming numbers in that quote, would you?) poured into the Emporium cash register.

CCP, seriously, what…the…hell?!

I have no idea what you boys are smoking, but damn, it must be good gear. It would seem, if Gevlon is right, that CCP have simply walked away from Eve Online. As they did, they waved to the kid in the wizard hat, saying; “Here, it’s all too hard, just take it and have some fun with it.”

Seriously, does anyone in the land of eternal fart-gas even play this game anymore?

Okay, so the world is a little bit weird right now. The US is going to give the reins of the biggest superpower the planet has ever seen to some nut job with a big wad of cash; fair enough. The Pacific is big enough that most of the ammunition won’t reach the Sunny Coast anyway, so they can let Donald have it, if they want.

But, dammit all, I play this game. CCP don’t have to make sure the game is THAT real, do they? As it sits, sovereignty null-sec is…well…cactus. Big fleet battles that nobody gives a flying one about, because the ISK doesn’t matter, sovereignty that’s taken by pointing a magic wand at a thing and holding it there for x amount of time, invasions that are carried out by someone sitting cloaked and playing something else, and others making ISK while in a capital ship, also playing something else.

I hope, deep in my heart, that this is something that gets the nerf bat to the face, and hard. Surely, surely, there is someone in the Reykjavik office who has been away from the bong long enough to peer red-eyed through the haze, wave the smoke away from the white board, and say, “Hey, hoo fort of dis shtoopid idea?!”

If this thing goes through as it is, they have handed the game to Mittens and co. to do with as they please. An unending, gushing pipeline of ISK, that flows straight into the Emporium coffers. Oh, sure, the Russians are going to benefit, too. Then again, BOTLORD will be replaced by CITLORD (see what I did there?) quicker than you can put a Trump For President sticker on a police cruiser’s back bumper (don’t do that).

Come on, CCP. It isn’t April, yet. You can stagger out of the back room, chewing on breath mints and whacking in eye drops, order some pizza and tell us all it was just a big joke.



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