Death, Taxes, and Social Media

Facebook public launchNews broke last week that, despite bring in over a billion dollars in profit last year, Facebook owes no taxes for the year 2012. Actually, the company will be getting a refund of close to a half billion dollars. This is due to a provision in the tax law that allows companies to discharge all previous losses, from their date of inception, during the year that the company goes public, as Facebook did in 2012. However, this is not necessarily a one-time windfall as Facebook may continue to get monster tax breaks in the coming years. And Facebook isn’t the only major social media company with no federal tax liability. This week it was revealed that LinkedIn has paid no federal income tax over the past three years, in spite of an estimated $160 million in profits over that time span.

The irony here is that much smaller businesses and/or individuals who promote these large companies through their social media services get no such tax breaks. In fact, I know of fellow small business owners who are struggling to meet their tax obligations at this time. Of course, social media is just one example, as similar situations exist in all trades and industries.

Politicians try to exploit such unfairness with lofty talk of “ending tax break for millionaires and billionaires.” The richest of the rich, such as Bill Gates and Warren Buffet, often avail themselves as props for such proposals. After all, who has more to lose than the richest of the rich? And if they are in favor of higher rates, why shouldn’t we be?

But when the rubber meets the road, such as in the fiscal cliff agreement less than two months ago, these same politicians advocate that the top tax rates be raised on those who make $200,000 per year (hardly millionaires or billionaires). So the brunt of the burden is carried by the small businesses on the lower end of the spectrum and, even for those of us who don’t quite make $200K, many of our clients and customers do. As for the likes of Buffett, such rate increases make no difference because these wealthy entrepreneurs have armies of tax attorneys to offset any meager rate increase. In fact, Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway has been fighting the I.R.S. over an estimated $1 billion in back taxes for over a decade (how many small businesses can afford to do that?).

The only real solution is to throw out the current tax system, which is loaded with loopholes for the crafty and traps for the less-connected, and replace it with a simple and straight-forward system for absolutely everyone. Such a common-sense solution will be vehemently opposed by tax attorneys and politicians who rely on the current convoluted tax system to grant special favors, but it would unleash an era of growth and certainty for everyone involved in commerce. Then even Facebook could “invest” in the infrastructure of our country.

~ Ric Albano

NY Post
Mother Jones
Huffington Post

Winter 2013


33 Dimensions Newsletter
January 31, 2013

Dollars for Diane compilation CDHappy Birthday to Diane!

My wife’s sister Diane turned 36 years old yesterday. When Diane was 30 she had a massive stroke which left her fighting for her life. In fact, doctors said it was unlikely she would survive a week. But Diane fought back and, although she continues to struggle with health issues daily, Diane continues to be in good spirits.

Three years ago, on Diane’s 33rd birthday, we held a fundraiser concert in her honor. We also collaborated with some of Pennsylvania’s finest musicians for a unique compilation album of original music. Since the beginning, we’ve sold this album for $5.00 with all proceeds benefiting brain injury research and a scholarship fund for Diane’s young daughter.

We still have plenty of copies of this CD which you can order at the link below for $5 plus $2.50 shipping and handling. More Info on Dollars for Diane Compilation CD

Ric Albano
Owner and Creative Director
33 Dimensions LLC

New Website, New Design

We are working on a whole new website with a new design (note the new logo on top) in time for our 4th anniversary in March. The new 33 Dimensions website will include regular articles with valuable information for our customers as well as many more features on small businesses and news concerning the web design industry.

Many thanks to Julie of Get Epic Creative for the new logo design.

Client News

Kids Theatre NewsKids Theatre News Central PA will be officially launching in the Spring, we currently have a sneak preview at Started by a theatre mom, the site will be a resource for busy theatre families, providing information about upcoming performances, auditions, local theatre companies, instructors, classes and camps, as well as resources and news pertinent to the industry.

The Cornerstone CoffeehouseThere is lots going on at The Cornerstone Coffeehouse in February. There will be several salon gatherings, fund raisers, and great culinary cooking classes. In fact, we will soon be designing a website specifically for the Cornerstone Culinary Kitchen.

The Cornerstone regularly features an incredible selection of coffee and tea, and a grat lunch menu includes salads, hearty sandwiches, and savory soups.

We strive for the growth and success of all our customers!

33 Dimensions
P.O. Box 126
Highspire, PA 17034


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