NC members in Amazon affilate program

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  1. DonnaCSmith profile image82
    DonnaCSmithposted 14 years ago

    Did you get this email message from Amazon? They don't give the name of the law so I haven't been able to find it. Wondered if this was a scam, or really from Amazon. I didn't follow their links, etc.

    "We regret to inform you that the North Carolina state legislature (the General Assembly) appears ready to enact an unconstitutional tax collection scheme that would leave little choice but to end its relationships with North Carolina-based Associates. You are receiving this e-mail because our records indicate that you are an Amazon Associate and resident of North Carolina.

    Please note that this is not an immediate termination notice and you are still a valued participant in the Associates Program. All referral fees earned on qualified traffic will continue to be paid as planned.

    But because the new law is drafted to go into effect once enacted – which could happen in the next two weeks – we will have to terminate the participation of all North Carolina residents in the Amazon Associates program on or before that same day. After the termination day, we will no longer pay any referral fees for customers referred to or nor will we accept new applications for the Associates program from North Carolina residents."

  2. JaCee profile image61
    JaCeeposted 14 years ago

    I got the email also but when I searched at the state's website I couldn't find anything about this at all. But I did search the web and found that several other people got the same email.

    I wonder if they will let us know when and if they terminate NC residents or is this the only email we will get.

    The email really isn't all that clear on what is going on. I wish they would give us more information as what is going to happen.

  3. profile image0
    \Brenda Scullyposted 14 years ago


  4. suziecat7 profile image85
    suziecat7posted 14 years ago

    Amazon itself calls it unconstitutional. I'm also trying to find out what I can and make a stink.

  5. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    This type of law passed in New York state and caused many affiliates to be dropped from dozens of affiliate programs such as CafePress. It is under consideration in many other states.

  6. fortunerep profile image69
    fortunerepposted 14 years ago

    I am fron NC and have not rec. this email or it is lost because my mail box is overflowing.  Kinda wierd.  Had not made money with Amazon but feel we should have the same rights.

  7. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    fortunerep don't forget we each live in different states with different laws. And if your state implements this, Amazon will cut you lose. Just because Amazon says it's illegal doesn't make it illeagal.

    Basically these laws say if a company has a physical presence in a state, then the company has to pay local sales taxes. These types state law usually say that affiliates are a physical presence in the state.

    But each state law is written a bit differently, so you need to read the legislation. I would contact  my state rep, if I were you.

    I think the more interesting response, will be from Hubpages. Will they work with other companies to give more affiliate options than Ebay and Amazon.

    1. johnr54 profile image49
      johnr54posted 14 years agoin reply to this

      The problem is that many other merchants are quick to drop affiliates once a law like this is passed.  Here's a list of merchants dropping NY affiliates, and it's quite long.

  8. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    Here's a link about this situation. It was started during the New York State tax debate. It is also following the practice in other states. You can find out what's happened to other affiliates. I just checked, there is info on North Caronlina and links to the legislation.

  9. dineane profile image71
    dineaneposted 14 years ago

    Thanks for the info, Nelle. I was just starting to see a little increase at Amazon, too :-(

  10. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    Don't give up hope, contact those folks at nyaffiliatevoice and learn how to fight it.

    A similiar tax law was just defeated in Maryland. Contact your state rep, and explain to him how it affects you. Most have no idea of what affiliates are. Usually they are sympathetic to small business owners.

  11. DonnaCSmith profile image82
    DonnaCSmithposted 14 years ago

    LOL, well if its a law I guess it is not illegal. But, they don't say what the law is, and I get a weekly newsletter from my state Senator and I haven't seen anything I would guess it is about. I emailed him a copy of the letter. If I hear back will update.

  12. Lissie profile image66
    Lissieposted 14 years ago

    I understand the law change is that as a NC affiliate Amazon would have to pay NC sales tax on any sale you were an affiliate for. Obviously impossible to track and too expensive for them - they dropped NY affiliates for the same reason.
    The law is due to pass within 2 weeks

    I suggest you "move" interstate -or at least your postal address does...

    1. Silver Rose profile image65
      Silver Roseposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      It's quite bizarre they are going after the little people like that - as you say, it's expensive to track.

      Here in the UK we have Value Added Tax (VAT), but it's only levied if you makes sales of more than £50,000 (circa $80,000). Below that, the small business/sole trader is exempt from the tax. The exemption was introduced because it's just too expensive to collect from the small person, plus they understand the pressures small businesses are under.

      If your state is desperate for tax income and doesn't want to borrow further, it might be worth suggesting to your politicians a compromise of a cut-off threshold under which you would be exempt. That way they will be able to tax the big guys who run all those huge affiliate-related sites, but work-at-home moms will be safe.

  13. Lissie profile image66
    Lissieposted 14 years ago

    Another solution (from someone who knows US laws) is to start a LLC in Nevada with a Nevada address and then just get your mail forwarded

  14. profile image0
    ysdataposted 14 years ago

    Delaware is also a tax free state

  15. profile image0
    ysdataposted 14 years ago

    I just did some research on the Sales Tax issue.  This is not a new development.  Apparently, there are many more states ready to pass the law.  I have written a hub with my finds, which includes videos and links to other resources that maybe helpful.

  16. profile image0
    rethansmithposted 14 years ago

    I have been cut from quite a few affiliate programs due to NY passing the law.

    Luckily, Amazon has kept New Yorkers on board, perhaps because of such a large market / large affiliate corps being headquartered in NYC?

    1. embitca profile image83
      embitcaposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      Amazon decided to pay the taxes in NY because they had also brought a suit in NY as well, which they had expected to win and win quickly. I believe that suit was thrown out however, so things could change in NY re Amazon anytime.

  17. R. Blue profile image61
    R. Blueposted 14 years ago

    It wasn't a scam...I got it too...and it was on TV here in Raleigh.   Not that I give a crap....I don't write here for the money anyway.

  18. profile image0
    newsworthyposted 14 years ago

    It appears it was published Friday at San Francisco, Wall Street Journal Market Watch … siteid=rss

  19. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    Lissie, it's not difficult or expensive to track the state and charge sales tax, when you consider the computer power and software capability of Amazon.

    Amazon just doesn't want to increase the price of their products. So they are getting rid of affiliates because they are considered to be a physical presence in the state. And it's the physical presence that triggers the tax payment.

  20. profile image0
    newsworthyposted 14 years ago

    The same legislation for Internet tax has been protested by Amazon for Rhode Island, Connecticut and California recently. 

    On Friday, Rhode Island Senate passed a budget including Internet tax and is expected to be signed by the governor.

    It is thought that other states will follow suit.

    Will Amazon dump them all?

  21. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    sure they'll dump all the American affiliates. They've got the rest of the world to push business to them. If you're writing on hubpages does it matter if you live in Paris, France or Paris, Tennessee. All the same to Amazon. They'll just outsource us, to the rest of the world.

  22. profile image0
    newsworthyposted 14 years ago

    Would the same apply to Google Adsense affiliates?

  23. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    Gee I hope not! I haven't heard of this happening.

    But there is hope. Some companies in the affected states especially NY have told their affiliates that they can't send out direct mail, email, or do PPC. Because that would make them active sales people - and make them a presence in the state. As opposed to just advertizers. The affiliate signs a document agreeing to these addtional terms. And all is good

    I thought this might be what Amazon was up to, when they told their affiliates in the US that they could no longer send traffic to Amazon with PPC. But apparently not.

  24. profile image0
    newsworthyposted 14 years ago

    The email came from Google today.  It instructs me that it has mailed a pin number to my home address. I have to assign the pin number to my Adsense account before payout issuance.

    I thought possibly that this is a preliminary to something special. 

    Maybe Im being paranoid, with all the fuss.

  25. Misha profile image63
    Mishaposted 14 years ago

    You are being paranoid smile

  26. profile image0
    newsworthyposted 14 years ago

    Thanks for your reassurance Misha. Im off of it now that you have checked my phobia.

    So much for Internet taxes and affiliate changes. I'm headed to research Tom's of Maine long-lasting care apricot deodorant. Not only trial and error of the product but to see if I could possibly get a tax break for ordering Tom's of Maine natural care on the internet.

    Because I'm sure the store where I bought Tom's of Maine 12 hour long-lasting odor protection paid taxes to get it shipped here. I then paid my state's tax for my underarm to smell like apricots. I'm going to see how much state taxes are in Maine because I dont think that I paid taxes to Tom in Maine to smell like an apricot, and without using the internet.

    I have my doubts that either finding will kill the funk. But for now, long-lasting is whats important.

    Coffee and beignet to the North Carolina Amazon affiliates who worked so hard.

  27. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    I use Toms of Main honeysuckle rose. Coffee and beignet, reminds me of a hot and sweltry night in New Orleans at Cafe du Monde. There was this guy with a telescope on the sidewalk and we kept paying to look at the stars. It was a very fun night.

  28. profile image0
    rethansmithposted 14 years ago

    So what happens when all states get greedy and pass the legislation?

    Does Amazon abandon associates in the US altogether?  Or do they simply cave to the pressure?

  29. johnr54 profile image49
    johnr54posted 14 years ago

    This is one area where the Squidoo affiliate model where Squidoo is handling the payments is better than the Hubpages model where Amazon deals with all of us individually. 

    If Hubpages were the affiliate that Amazon was dealing with, I'm sure they could get Amazon's attention because the aggregate sales is quite large when you look at 100% of the sales all of us get.

    But that would require Hubpages to handle all the sales tracking and payments, as opposed to just a few lines of code to stuff our affiliate code into 60% of the impressions.

  30. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    So if you sell an Amazon Product at Squidoo, which percentage commissin do you receive 4,6,6.5, or 7? And are you paid by paypal?

  31. johnr54 profile image49
    johnr54posted 14 years ago

    Don't get me wrong, I actually like the Hubpages model better, but for those who are getting dropped by Amazon, it clearly is not good.

    Squidoo is not very transparent on how much your cut it, but for the sales I've seen it appears to be a little under 3%.  That needs to be compared to 60% of your Hubpages, since you don't get 100% of your impressions.  So if you are currently making about 7% on your Amazon sales, then that is effectively 60%x7%,  or about 4.2% on average.

    The payouts for Squidoo do come through Paypal, and it comes from Squidoo, not Amazon.

    The caveat in all this is that for me, at least, both the traffic and the conversions are pathetic at Squidoo.

  32. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years ago

    I still like the fact that I know where I stand with how many products I sell. I have lots of other sites that I can combine with my Hubs to keep my percentage up at Amazon.

    And I haven't seen traffic like this in years. I couldn't be happier than I am with hubpages.

  33. fortunerep profile image69
    fortunerepposted 14 years ago

    I just realized my account was closed today, I am from NC

    1. profile image0
      Nelle Hoxieposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      I'm so sorry. I hope you can make it up with adsense and Ebay.


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