Telcos regulator seeks to monitor WhatsApp

Patrick

Are you based in California? Coz I know Ganja is legal there.. ?

That’s the only response I can think of regarding your post..

Regards

*Ali Hussein*

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On Tue, Nov 6, 2018 at 3:14 PM Patrick A. M. Maina via kictanet <
kictanet@lists.kictanet.or.ke> wrote:

> Whatsapp is not monetised and does not derive any revenue from anywhere
> yet (this will change next year). This should have no bearing at all on
> whether Whatsapp should be taxed or not. It is a billion dollar
> multinational company operating on a non-traditional business model. This
> means that it is our tax regulations which need to be *modernized* to rope
> in 21st century global business models that add a local cost burden on the
> government (e.g. increasing costs of security, turning kids into
> narcissistic screen zombies – with resulting impact on learning and metal
> health etc) yet do not contribute to the local kitty – which is unfair
> considering that they are *billion dollar* companies.
>
> To put it differently, any shilling that Government spends to mitigate the
> risks of fake news in whatsapp or Facebook (e.g. buying ads to push correct
> position) is a subsidy paid to Facebook and Whatsapp. This is money that
> could have gone to health sector to buy medicine, sanitation for clean
> water or agriculture for food security. Instead it goes to fix a problem
> created by an entity that has net negative value to the economy. Not all
> innovation is good or beneficial!
>
> How to tax Silicon valley business models: Use the same metrics investors
> use:
> 1. Estimated number of users / downloads
> 2. Risk / benefit factor (e.g. security risks or impact on jobs/wages)
> 3. Valuation (funds raised)
>
> Silicon valley companies are designed to make losses for decades even as
> they move massive amounts of money (literally avoiding taxes by exploiting
> obsolete legislation). The real business they are in is the fundraising
> business but that is under the tax radar.
>
> Signing off. Will check back later for updates.
>
> Patrick
>
>
> On Tuesday, November 6, 2018, 2:45:18 PM GMT+3, Ebele Okobi via kictanet <
> kictanet@lists.kictanet.or.ke> wrote:
>
>
> This is a fascinating and very timely conversation. As I’m sure all can
> imagine, I have many thoughts. ?
> I do have a question, first-how much revenue does WhatsApp derive from
> Kenya?
>
> On Nov 6, 2018, at 7:45 AM, evelyne wanjiku via kictanet <
> kictanet@lists.kictanet.or.ke> wrote:
>
> Dear All,
>
> In suppport of Mr. Patrick Mainas Maina’s input.
>
> The government needs to consider taxing the platforms. This is because
> they make money from us trade in our data and the revenue genereted
> benefits their countries and not ours given that they do not pay taxes
> here. This has been considered in Europe. In africa however, no country can
> apply this taxes on its own due to our ‘economically colonised’ position
> our countries find ourselves in. This means that the easiest option for our
> government becomes the easy route which is taxing the end user. This is
> counterproductive especially for those who use social media for productive
> activities. Therefore only a united african front would be succesful in
> getting these giants to pay up and keep our governments from considering
> taxing citizens. It is also important to consider that calls made on
> whatsapp, skype,viber cost less. This means that there is revenue reduction
> for the companies providing voice services. Considering that these
> companies are locally based and pay taxes to our government, why should
> their revenue be reduced by services that do not pay taxes to us? I suppose
> this is the logic used by countries like the UAE that block the use of
> whatsapp to make calls whithin their borders.
>
> As for the ability of whatsapp to cause chaos, this is true and has been
> proven and whatsapp itself has acknowlegded this fact in countries like
> India and Pakistan. These are countries where fake news and inflammatory
> messages delivered mainly through whatsapp have led to chaos that have led
> to deaths of many people. Whatsapp has responded by putting in measures to
> ensure that such spread of hate news can be controlled from their end.
> Whatsapp also remains open open to suggestions as to how this can be
> contolled and is actively leading research in this area.
>
> The question therefore should be, should we leave Whatsapp to be in charge
> of what is transfered on their platform and the consequences that follow?
> Should government have a role in monitoring how whatsapp is being used for
> harmful activities. Overall what is the role of government and the various
> platforms in ensuring this platform and others are used responsibly?
>
> Good day to all
>
>
>
>
> On Tuesday, November 6, 2018, 3:44:22 AM GMT+3, Francis Monyango via
> kictanet <kictanet@lists.kictanet.or.ke> wrote:
>
>
> Morning Mr Patrick Maina,
>
> You mention how messaging apps facilitate fake news, crime and other
> things. You also lay peace,development on a scale versus human rights such
> as free speech and privacy.
> Sir, it is good to be objective and factual. Last year Kenya had 10 months
> of hot politics. Research shows that the Kenyan authorities did not attempt
> to control, disrupt or shutdown the internet. Hence this tired line of the
> country going into flames because of the internet (messaging apps) doesn’t
> hold any weight. The number of Kenyan users of these messaging apps and
> other factors such as social class of users, bots affect the impact of the
> internet in democratic transitions. The broadcast media shut down in
> January should tell which communication medium has more impact on the
> Kenyan society. ?
>
> I believe your intention was to state why companies that offer over the
> top services should pay taxes here. That is a different argument all
> together with a different set of facts unless you are advocating for a
> blanket over the top tax to be paid by users to avoid ‘spread of gossip and
> lies’ just like in Uganda.
>
>
> On Fri, 2 Nov 2018, 13:26 Patrick A. M. Maina via kictanet, <
> kictanet@lists.kictanet.or.ke> wrote:
>
> These messaging apps facilitate fake news, crime, foreign meddling (to
> subvert democracy), brainwashing and hate speech on a massive scale. We
> know this for a fact.
>
> So as citizens and stakeholders in our country, we need to ask: what do we
> value more, is it things that improve peace, stability, economic
> development and democracy, OR, is it some utopian, unbounded notion of free
> speech and privacy that is disconnected from our contextual reality (e.g.
> protects criminals, malicious defamers and violence mongers in equal
> proportion as law abiding citizens)?
>
> The companies running these uncontrolled messaging platforms will not be
> impacted if our country goes up in flames. They cost governments tons of
> money in maintaining internal security (especially during democratic
> transitions – sometimes to existential levels) yet they don’t pay any
> taxes… and mark you, they are *billion dollar* companies! This also means
> that funds that ought to have bought, say, medicine to save lives gets
> diverted to fix an *imported problem* with no path to holding the parent
> company accountable for damage caused.
>
> Gok needs to modernize our tax laws, which currently are based on the
> traditional “for profit” enterprise model and thus out of touch with
> Silicon Valley’s “make losses by design” model. The basic assumption that
> entrepreneurship is a profit oriented endeavour does not hold for Silicon
> Valley VC subsidized companies. They are designed to operate as loss makers
> for decades (but still move *massive* amounts of financial resources at
> massive scale). This has the technical effect of *tax avoidance* because
> massive profits *are* still being made by the offshore VCs – which denies
> governments billions in taxes (despite imposing local burdens as
> illustrated above).
>
>
> A smart government would create modernized laws to tax VC funded Silicon
> Valley companies e.g. on the basis of *funding rounds* and *valuations*
> because this is their *real* business i.e. its how the investors intend to
> make money from day one – and the primary reason they push for perpetual
> losses!
>
> There should also be a turnover tax and VAT on online revenue earned in
> Kenya by foreign billion dollar internet companies (e.g. advertisement
> revenue and appstore revenue), to level the tax playing field for local
> businesses. Similar to what other countries like the UK are working on:
>
> www.wired.co.uk/article/facebook-uk-tax-bill
> <urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.wired.co.uk_article_facebook-2Duk-2Dtax-2Dbill&d=DwMFaQ&c=5VD0RTtNlTh3ycd41b3MUw&r=ArvepG4_wcNu_X9xi3nb_Xa9WsGLVfmK6mwPdVONOTE&m=t74BOKebo761FiLlF3R…>
>
> CA will obviously have a hard time monitoring and enforcing though, under
> the current traditional framework due to technical barriers (e.g.
> encryption) and also due to jurisdictional challenges.
>
> So the other thing that CA really needs to do once the rules are set is to
> consider blocking non-compliant foreign apps completely at ISP level
> (especially now that political temperatures are cool and people and
> thinking clearly). Lets have local startups filling any gaps with copycat
> apps China-style.
>
> To be clear, I support free speech and privacy. But I also support peace,
> stability, safe neighbourhoods, democracy, sovereignty and economic
> predictability!
>
> A delicate balance is needed to maximise the rights of law abiding
> citizens while minimising the ability of those with evil intent to exploit
> basic rights in order to harm the innocent.
>
> Good day.
> Patrick.
>
>
>
>
> On Thursday, November 1, 2018, 11:00:44 PM GMT+3, Grace Githaiga via
> kictanet <kictanet@lists.kictanet.or.ke> wrote:
>
>
> Kenya is considering regulating online services such as WhatsApp and Skype
> in a radical move that could force the internet-based service providers to
> share data with the government.
>
> The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) is in search of a consultant to
> study and determine how the so-called over-the-top services (OTTS) operated
> by groups such as Facebook, which runs WhatsApp, and Skype owner Microsoft,
> could be regulated.
> Read on:
> www.nation.co.ke/business/Telcos-regulator-seeks-to-monitor-WhatsApp/996-4833020-fn9u7s/index.html
> <urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.nation.co.ke_business_Telcos-2Dregulator-2Dseeks-2Dto-2Dmonitor-2DWhatsApp_996-2D4833020-2Dfn9u7s_index.html&d=DwMFaQ&c=5VD0RTtNlTh3ycd41b3MUw&r=Arv…>
>
>
>
>
>
> Best regards
>
>
> Githaiga, Grace
>
>
> Co-Convenor
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> to bring about change – but in yours”—Barrack Obama.
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