Should Content Creators Be Asked To Pay Tax?

Nmesoma Okwudili


February 19, 2024

Currently, creators on social media platforms, including Instagram and TikTok, who have a significant number of followers, are being advised by Hussaini Ishaq Magaji, the Registrar General of the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), to formally register their businesses in adherence to the Company and Allied Matters Act 2020.

There has been support and opposition to Nigeria’s plan to tax content creators. This move is in line with indications that the Federal Inland Revenue Services is preparing to include media content creators and influencers in its tax system.


During a visit to Abuja by Opay’s managing director, Dauda Gotring, and his team, the Registrar General (RG) revealed that content creators on social media platforms make significant income without paying federal taxes.

While some individuals welcome the new policy, others express discomfort and dissatisfaction with the changes. Advocates of this initiative are often questioned on social media about why content creators, with their substantial incomes, and ownership of vehicles and properties, should be exempted from tax obligations.

Proponents argue that treating content producers similarly to those in more traditional sectors of the economy, who are subject to various taxes, promotes uniformity and fairness. Enforcing a just and consistent tax structure helps avoid potential disparities between digital and non-digital industries.

It is claimed that taxing content creators could increase the government’s revenue. Content creation has grown to be a profitable industry as the digital world expands, and taxing it might support public services and national growth.

In response to the discussion about the new regulation, an individual commented on Instagram post on gossipmillnaija stating, “Nigerians are lamenting that the county isn’t functioning, yet if you inquire about their contribution to the nation, the response is often zero. Have you ever observed a prosperous country that doesn’t pay tax levy?”

He added “Even the bible mandates tax payment. How can a nation progress without tax revenue? In Europe and America, responsible citizens meet their tax obligations. Regardless of your occupation, whether its prostitution, or nightclub dancing, you’re still obligated to pay your tax.”

Now, the entirety of this claim is debatable on its own. While the concerned Instagram commenter made a compelling case in favour of putting the new policy into action, people don’t appear to be persuaded. Nevertheless, they believe that those in authority don’t do anything practical with the tax revenue that advances the interests of the country.

It is easy to blame other nations that have similar tax laws, but how about we examine our own leaders and what they do with the public coffers? Have they handled it well given how much has been generated? It’s crucial to discuss how jobs are being produced, security is being provided, and citizen tax accountability is guaranteed while discussing other developing nations.

“what is happening in this country that can motivate you to pay tax? No job, no security, nothing at all yet you want people tax, from where exactly? Someone added.

Based on the feedback received on social media regarding this new policy thus far, the main concerns from those who are firmly against it are that they do not see the need for people to start paying taxes if they cannot provide proof of their tax returns in the nation. This includes content creators in particular. In essence, they seek the worth of their taxes.

Since content development is a creative field that demands a great deal of strategic planning and original ideas, taxing content creators could limit their creativity. Taxes may be considered as an extra burden that prevents artists from investing in their work and impedes the diversity and creativity of the material they generate.

Taxing content creators is opposed on the grounds that it could make talented individuals to consider leaving the country. Nigeria’s overall growth in the creative industry may suffer if creators go to more tax-friendly locations, which would result in the loss of skilled professionals.

It takes a careful analysis of economic, societal, and creative considerations to decide whether Nigerian content providers should be obligated to pay taxes. Taxation may help finance infrastructure projects and government revenue, but it’s crucial to balance this against other considerations including the possibility of losing talents and challenges in enforcing the law.

 In designing laws for Nigeria’s evolving digital world, a delicate balance between fostering growth and guaranteeing fair and reasonable taxation must be struck.



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