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New York State Is Killing My Affiliate Business

Posted by on May 24, 2008

Well, today’s been interesting, I must say, for a Friday before a long holiday weekend.

I had two of the affiliate programs that I advertise for through Commission Junction tell me that they’re discontinuing my association with them because I live in New York state, and it’s stupid law which says out of state companies that do business in New York state online must collect sales tax from his customers and pay the state. One of them even went so far as to tell me that if I reincorporated my business in New Jersey that they’d be happy to have me back.

What am I talking about? Here’s a pdf link to a memo from the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance, Office of Tax Policy Analysis, Taxpayer Guidance Division that addresses this new legislation.

Sure, the economy isn’t tough enough for everyone right now, with gas almost $4 a gallon, the price of food and other stuff going up drastically, property taxes are going up, our Thruway fees are going up, postage just went up, and now New York is basically going to kill online business because this is just the tip of the iceberg. Amazon has already filed suit, and many other companies aren’t far behind. And, if it’s withheld, I can see more of these companies deciding they’re just not going to do business with New York, and there’s the farm, folks.

We already have one of the worst credit ratings in the country, we’re suffering mass exodus from the state, including New York City, because we have the highest tax rate in the country (at least we did; we’re up there in any case), the state is trying to close hospitals and make others merge in an effort to stem costs (with what I still feel was the recommendation from an illegally created panel; thanks Pataki), and now this? I mean, not that I’m making all that much money from it at this very moment, but taking away the opportunity for me to even have the chance to make money online certainly doesn’t help, does it?

For the first time I’m starting to wonder if my wife is correct and maybe we should leave this state. I have always loved it here because I think central New York is just a beautiful place, but I have to admit that it would be nice living in a state without income tax or restraint of trade for a change, one that’s not one of the most regulated states in the nation on a yearly basis (how much do people in other states pay for their annual car inspections anyway?).

No sir, I’m not a happy man today.

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Mike Harmon:

I came across your blog on Technorati. Nice site layout. I will stop by and read more soon.

Mike Harmon

May 24th, 2008 | 1:26 AM
John Dilbeck:

Hi Mitch,

I’m sorry to hear the bad news about the merchants canceling your affiliation through Commission Junction – just because you live in New York.

I agree. It’s hard enough to earn a living without having to deal with things like that.

All the best,


May 24th, 2008 | 2:08 AM

Hell mate half of them won’t have a bar of me an all because I live in Australia lol

May 24th, 2008 | 4:05 AM

Thanks guys. Sometimes I feel like I’m living in the Bangladesh of the United States. Yeah, I know, not close, but still,… 🙂

May 24th, 2008 | 10:19 AM
Gary Gregory:

As a fellow affiliate marketer, I feel your pain Mitch. It looks like you will have to switch over your promotions to Clickbank.

May 24th, 2008 | 7:15 PM

Thanks Gary. Thing is, I still have to figure out all the nuances of Clickbank. I still have lots of other advertisers from CJ thus far, so we’ll see just how big the exodus ends up being.

May 24th, 2008 | 7:54 PM
C.A. Simmons:

Sorry to hear that Mitch. I wonder how many other corporations will join the suit? Based on an article at the Huffington Post, NY alleges that they’re simply closing a tax loophole. I say it’s gov’t finding more ways to stick their hands in our pockets.

Hopefully PA doesn’t get the same idea. That would make the business of online marketing much more complicated then it already is and dramatically raise the barrier to entry.

May 25th, 2008 | 6:40 AM
C.A. Simmons:

~correction~ “…would make the business of online marketing much more complicated THAN it already is…”

May 25th, 2008 | 6:42 AM

New York would say something like that, C.A. I tell you, if it weren’t for the taxes this state would be great. Of course, most of our problems are because of how expensive it is to take care of NYC and it’s issues, and I’m saying that as someone who lives NYC.

May 25th, 2008 | 7:56 PM
Barnestead NH Real Estate:

Hey Mitch,
New Hampshire welcomes you! hahahah

March 26th, 2009 | 3:55 PM

Thanks for that, Barn. One of these days I’ll actually stop in New Hampshire instead of just driving through it. 🙂

March 26th, 2009 | 4:57 PM