Peter David asks his fans to pay his taxes

Comic book and Star Trek novel writer Peter David is in trouble. He has a massive tax bill due and he doesn’t have the money to pay it. As of now, he owes $88,000 in back taxes, interest, and penalties.

All this is from money he earned making a Canadian kid’s TV show called Space Cases. It appeared on TV for two years, beginning in 1996. According to Peter David, his now ex-wife pilfered half the money he set aside in a bank account for taxes. She used the money to hire a divorce lawyer. He then used the rest of the money to hire his own divorce lawyer, leaving no money for his taxes.

Peter David says he tried to make payments to the IRS. He would make payments, but then when April 15 rolled around, he wouldn’t have any money to pay that year’s taxes. He had already spent his money on paying his past tax bill.

Then, according to Peter David, the IRS forgot about it.

As fate would have the IRS recently remembered Peter David’s owed a lot of money. They now want him to pay what he owes. Imagine that.

Peter David wants donations to pay his taxes - Bent Corner

Peter David is now asking each of his Facebook and Twitter followers to send him $10. According to him, he has 5,000 followers on Facebook and 13,000 followers on Twitter. That means if each of these fans sends him $10 as he’s asked them to do, that will give him $180,000. That amount is much more than what he says he owes the IRS.

Fans can send him money through his PayPay account or special Go Fund Me page. As of this morning, his Go Fund Me page is showing people have given him over forty grand.

It’s things like this that make me glad I deleted my Facebook account. I’d hate to have some minor celebrity I follow on Facebook hit me up for money so he doesn’t have to go to prison. I do have a Twitter account, but I’ve never followed Peter David on Twitter. For all I know, he’s got me blocked.

I don’t know what’s worse: cheating on your taxes or begging fans to pay what you owe the government. Both scenarios involve you not paying what you owe. For me, asking people I don’t know for money because I decided not to pay the IRS like a regular person is much worse. It’s embarrassing. A worthy cause this is not. I will not be sending Peter David any money. He needs to pull up his big boy pants and pay his own taxes and not beg his fans to do it.

I pay my taxes every year. He should do the same. Endless wars in the Middle East don’t pay for themselves.

When Peter David is convicted for tax evasion and goes to prison, I might donate money to his prison commissary account. He could use it to buy beef jerky and Gatorade, items I’m told are quite popular in federal prison. If he gets sent to Cumberland, I could even visit him in person. It’s not that far from here.

Brianna Wu accused of fraud by Patreon supporter

Self proclaimed “Godzilla of Feminists” Brianna Wu is being accused of fraud by an anonymous Patreon supporter. The basis of the accusation is connected to the stated purpose of the Patreon goal. Here is what Wu posted on Patreon:

Here’s where you come in: If you appreciate what I do, please chip in so I can hire some help with the Women in Tech advocacy I do. I need someone to help me with the medial parts of dealing with my attackers so I can focus on my work, making and shipping games. I imagine we’ll also have them work on women in tech advocacy.

Wu’s Patreon supporters collectively give $2,184.70 each month. This helps with paying for the full-time employment of a person named Natalie O’Brien.

This is what the anonymous Patreon supporter wrote on Medium:

In various publications, Brianna has mentioned a woman named Natalie O’Brien. She has claimed that Natalie O’Brien is a pregnant woman who she hired as an administrator. I now believe that Natalie O’Brien may not exist and that Brianna Wu has simply pocketed the money for herself.

In my humble opinion, complaining about possible fraud on Patreon is a lot like swimming in the Atlantic Ocean and then complaining about getting wet. Fraud is always a real possibility with Patreon because there are no mechanisms in place to make sure money is actually going to the stated purpose.

Fraud becomes even more of a possibility because it’s connected to Brianna Wu. This is not be the first time Wu has been accused of not telling the truth.

My advice to anyone wanting to give to a cause and they want to make sure the money is going to that cause, stay clear of Patreon. Look instead for organizations who’ve been vetted by the IRS as bona fide non-profits. These organizations must file reports with the IRS every year that show how much money they take in and how they use the money. These reports are made available to the public.

By all means give money to people on Patreon if it makes you feel good. Just don’t expect any kind of verification or proof. That’s not what Patreon does.

Patreon has new community guidelines

Patreon, the San Francisco based company that allows people to give money on a recurring basis to the artists and creators they support, introduced new community guidelines. These new guidelines dictate what Patreon recipients can and cannot do to be eligible for receiving Patreon money. There’s a long list of violations that will get Patreon members banned from using Patreon, or depending on the severity of the supposed violations, strikes on their official Patreon record.

Reading through the lengthy new guidelines, they strike me as something written by a child.

The guidelines are vague and not really well-defined. For example, one of the actions that will get a Patreon recipient the boot is to engage in “malicious doxing”. Although I knew what doxing means, the Internet-based practice of researching and broadcasting personally identifiable information about an individual, I had no idea there were different kinds of doxing. To ban malicious doxing implies not all doxing is wrong, and not all kinds of doxing will get you cut off from that sweet, sweet Patron money.

Before reading Patreon’s new community guidelines, I thought doxing was doxing.

As dumb as these new community guidelines are, the most ridiculous thing is how they will be enforced. If people see a page on Patreon that they feel violates the new community guidelines, they’re encouraged to send Patreon an email. In other words, to tattle on the Patreon precipitant they feel is violating the new guidelines.

This should go over really well with people who love to snitch on other people, especially when they can do it over the Internet.

Personally, I hope these new guidelines encourage people to stay away from Patreon. Instead of relying on handouts from people they don’t know, it’s better for artists and creators to actually earn the money they receive. It’s better for them, and it’s better for society.