Amusement Tax Will Hit PlayStation Users In Chicago Starting Tomorrow

Published: November 13, 2018 1:39 PM /



The 9 percent "Amusement Tax" will hit PlayStation users in Chicago, Sony has confirmed. As of November 14, the tax will be levied on PlayStation Store receipts of PlayStation Plus, PlayStation Now, PlayStation Vue, PlayStation Music, PlayStation Video On Demand, and PlayStation Video Live Events.

This means that your PlayStation Plus subscription for a year will cost over $5 more than in any other part of the US, or if you purchase it via another method that isn't applying the Amusement Tax. It may not sound like much, but it adds up after multiple purchases if you make use of the PlayStation ecosystem.

Sony began enforcing local tax policies on PSN since 2016, and local taxes can affect everything from digital content to Amazon purchases depending on where you live. Additional reports suggest that this local tax could affect other places, including New York City.

Chicago's Amusement Tax hasn't just hit PlayStation. Spotify, Netflix, and Xbox are all being subjected to the same taxes enacted under Mayor Rahm Emanuel and has seen Netflix raise subscription prices in Chicago, too. The tax has also been colloquially donned "cloud tax" or "Hamilton Tax" after its effect over the popular Broadway musical Hamilton, which is also taxed in Chicago. 

The tax isn't popular in the city of Chicago, but Emanuel says the taxes are necessary to shore up the city's pensions. Several companies like Apple and Netflix are taking action against the city for the taxes, calling the tax unconstitutional and a violation of the 1998 Internet Tax Freedom Act, which prohibits states, counties, and municipalities from imposing discriminatory taxes on electronic commerce. However, PlayStation gamers are now subject to the same tax as other amusement activities until any changes are made.

Quick Take

This is a real bummer for PlayStation users in Chicago. The term Amusement Tax is a horrendously morbid one. They're not even trying to make it not sound insidious. Here's hoping it doesn't come to other states.

What do you think? Will you be affected by this? Do you think it will spread to other states? Let us know in the comments!

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| Staff Writer

Dan is a lover of games, music, and movies from the UK. He can usually be found buried in RPGs, shooters, roguelikes, and sometimes World of Warcraft, but… More about Dan