Economist: taxing virtual property is inevitable

Any economist will tell you, ad infinitum, that there is no such thing as a free lunch. In virtual worlds, people can make high profits by producing goods where there are no tangible costs (only time). Such alchemists are not going to be happy with comments made by Dan Miller, a senior economist with the Congress' Joint Economic Committee.

Miller notes that, "given growth rates of 10 to 15 percent a month, the question is when, not if, Congress and IRS start paying attention to these issues ... so it is incumbent on us to set the terms and the debate so we have a shaped tax policy toward virtual worlds and virtual economies in a favorable way."

The details of a virtual tax would be hard to assemble, and this CNET article highlights some of the major issues with implementing such a tax. Our take? We're not sure how one could even track all transactions, much less verifying what country in which they reside, but with people making millions building virtual houses and gold farming, they should at least be giving some of that back to the community.

[Via The Escapist]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.