What Tax Classification Should Bloggers Use on Their Tax Returns?

Another blogger posed the question in a private Facebook group… What kind of business do you list you blog as on your tax return? Here’s my simple answer:

711510 Independent Artists, Writers, and Performers

I’ve been using this as my business code on my tax forms since I got laid off from my last office job. For me, there wasn’t much of a question about it. I wasn’t really making money from my blog, but I’d started an independent copywriting company. I may not have been able to choose the right tax code myself, but it just so happened that I had the opportunity to do a tax preparation mystery shop at a tax prep chain. (That was a nightmare, for the record; the retiree who was “helping” us typed my name in wrong, and we had to correct many other things she entered into the computer improperly.) BUT she did find this number for me, so there’s that, at least.

1040 Tax Help

Here are some of the relevant job titles that count under this heading:

  • Ghost writers, independent
  • Journalists, independent (freelance)
  • Newspaper columnists, independent (freelance)
  • Photo journalists, independent (freelance)
  • Photographers, independent artistic
  • Poets, independent
  • Speakers, independent
  • Technical writers, independent
  • Writers of advertising copy, independent
  • Writers, independent (freelance)

HOWEVER… If your blog is big enough, you may want to consider this one:

519130 Internet Publishing and Broadcasting and Web Search Portals

The language is a bit outdated, referring to online “portals,” but if you don’t do any writing for other sites and make your living primarily on your own site(s), this might be the code you want to go for. Here are some of the relevant job titles that count under this heading:

  • Entertainment sites, Internet
  • Financial magazine and periodical publishers, exclusively on Internet
  • Internet broadcasting
  • Internet entertainment sites
  • Internet magazine publishing
  • Internet news publishers
  • Internet newsletter publishing
  • Internet sports sites
  • Magazine publishers, exclusively on Internet
  • Pattern and plan (e.g., clothing patterns) publishers, exclusively on Internet
  • Publishers, Internet greeting card
  • Special interest portals (e.g., parents sharing information about child rearing, etc.), Internet
  • Video broadcasting, exclusively on Internet
  • Web broadcasting
  • Web communities

This post does not constitute legal or financial advice. If you have questions about your tax filings, please consult a tax professional.

Christina Gleason (924 Posts)

That’s me: Christina Gleason. I’m a professional copywriter, editor, and blogger. My company is called Phenomenal Content. (Hire me!) I’m a relatively high-functioning Aspie who also lives with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), depression, anxiety, and chronic pain. I am not ashamed to admit that I am in the care of a psychiatrist, who assures me that people in therapy are often better adjusted than “normal” people who are not, because at least we know what our issues are and are working on them. I’m a geek for grammar, fantasy, and select types of gaming, including World of Warcraft and Plants vs Zombies 2. I hate vegetables. I have an intense phone phobia, so I’ll happily conduct business over email or IM instead. I have started writing no fewer than five novels, and I hope to finish one of them...eventually.

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