From the Jan./Mar. 2008 Review of Tax Research Systems
[Editors Note: This related article accompanied the review of tax research systems.] Over the course of just a little more than two years, TaxAlmanac.org has greatly reshaped how many tax and accounting professionals get their tax information, interact with peers, and provide their own contributions to the professional community.
The free online tax research website was created as a “user content-contributed” site in 2005 by a cadre of Intuit’s tax and technical staff. Their goal was to provide tax and accounting professionals with a free resource for primary source materials such as government publications, in addition to giving them the ability to edit and post articles pertaining to specific tax treatments and laws, much like the online encyclopedia Wikipedia.
TaxAlmanac also offers several collaboration functions geared toward tax and accounting professionals, including the Wiki-style editing tools, discussion forums, community portal and current events listings. TaxAlmanac’s library of tax content now stands at more than 49,000 articles written by tax professionals from across the country, and includes Internal Revenue Code, Treasury Regulations, Internal Revenue Bulletin material, and general business topics. Content is divided into major categories for income, deductions, depreciation, credits, etc. It also offers breaking news information through both the feature article and “In the News” sections.
Although primarily intended for professionals, many traditional consumers also utilize the website, which now receives as many as 60,000 hits per day. TaxAlmanac has received several accolades from the industry and mainstream press, including Time Magazine and The CPA Technology Advisor, which awarded the vendor with a Tax & Accounting Technology Innovation Award in 2006 (www.cpatechnologyadvisor.com/go/1196).
TaxAlmanac’s unofficial motto sums up the concept of the community-based
tax resource quite well: “None of us is as smart as all of us.”
In other words, the collective, real-world knowledge of a group of tax practitioners
is far more effective than an individual’s research in solving tax problems.