back to article 'Ich bin ein storyteller', says UK taxman

Employers receiving HMRC's latest mailshot were confused to find the accompanying CD did not contain the promised payroll software but children's stories - read aloud in fluent German. The February edition of HMRC's thrice-yearly "Employer Bulletin" normally contains a CD of software designed to help small firms deal with …


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  1. Michael

    Good job it wasn't Snow white and the seven dwarves

    Apparently one version is a porno...!

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Ich Bin Ein Plonker!

    Easy mistake to make, it must be quite hard to tell the difference between German Fairy Stories and UK Tax Laws.

  3. Marky W

    Won't somebody think of the children!!

    Sitting there, excitedly waiting for storytime, glass of milk and bowl of sauerkraut in hand....

  4. Anonymous Coward

    ich bin confused

    "HMRC's thrice-yearly "Employer Bulletin" ... The CD is updated and mailed out twice per year."

    LE QUOI?!

    Kanst du mir helfen bitte? your ingerlish ist sehr merde

  5. The Mole
    Thumb Down

    But think of the children ...

    But think of the children who instead of getting some nice story time to send them to sleep instead get tax software!

  6. Sergie Kaponitovicz

    Minor Shit Happens

    Not exactly "OMG screws up again" is it?

    Whilst I remain 100% opposed to the Stasi database, this is a mistake by a third party that affected a miniscule amount of recipients.

    Come on, there are more important issues than this.

    And before anyone suggests it, HMRC never sends any personal or corporate specific info electronically or on disk, so 'No, this is not an example of future mega foul-ups"

    Mind you, the next HMRC laptop or USB Flash Drive loss will be a different story.

  7. Chris Williams (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: ich bin confused

    Umm... the Bulletin is sent out three times per year. Two of them are accompanied by a CD. All ist klar?

    - Chris

  8. wsm

    @Ich Ein Plonker

    Ahh, so that explains it. Tax laws, fairy tales, nothing new here...

  9. StooMonster
    Black Helicopters

    Major Shit Happens

    @ Sergie Kaponitovicz: "mistake by a third party"

    Yeah, it's not like vast parts of the British state apparatus and the ID and Stasi databases aren't run by third parties is it?

    Oh wait...

  10. Anonymous Coward

    mean while in Germany

    "Ich bin ein Register"

    Is reporting that German Copyright Lawyers are preparing a case against the pirates known as HMRC.

    "prepare for boarding, me young buckaroos"

  11. Anonymous Coward

    Obviously, it was a mistake.

    That CD was presumably intended to have the personal details of half a million random taxpayers. But it got lost on the train on the way to the CD pressers, so they had to make do with a story or two.

  12. Des

    Ja bitte

    Könnte ich eine deutschsprachige Kinder-CD wenden Sie sich bitte?

  13. Marie Bourgen
    IT Angle

    YAWN - is this IT?

    YAWN - is there nothing more serious to talk about....

    So these guys produce some wrong disks..what 100 out of a million? Big Deal, but bravo Chris for making a 'berg' out of a 'molehaufen'

    brrr...cold out here, back into my shell..

  14. david

    Commercial sensitivitiy...

    ...and it was on the label for all to see. I'd love to have been the one who pointed that out to them.


  15. Neil Lucock
    Black Helicopters


    Now's the chance to report HMRC to FACT (federation against copyright theft), not the German lawyers.

    It doesn't matter what your excuse is, if you distribute stuff without permission, you're guilty. Perhaps they can get a huge fine out of HMRC, enough to cover everyone's taxes? It seems like a good idea, perhaps we can then fight the winner and be rid of both forever?


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  17. Steve

    The lady doth protest too much

    "She stressed that there had been no loss of data..."

    Why would their have been?

    I can't decide if they think we're thick or if they just don't know what they're doing. I'm also not sure which alternative I like least.

  18. Anonymous Coward

    @ Ex-IT

    >Easy mistake to make, it must be quite hard to

    > tell the difference between German Fairy Stories and UK Tax Laws.

    German fairly tales usually have a moral element.

  19. Dave

    Makes as much sense

    As someone who doesn't speak German (I did an O-level and forgot most of it), the story disks would probably make as much sense as the tax ones whether I tried listening to them, reading the files or running them on a computer.

  20. Adrian Waterworth

    @The Mole

    "But think of the children who instead of getting some nice story time to send them to sleep instead get tax software!"

    It's OK, this is effectively a fail-safe event. If you've ever had to run even a small payroll, not to mention a payroll year end, you will know that the tax stuff will almost certainly get them off to sleep even faster than the stories would have done. God it's tedious...

  21. kain preacher Silver badge

    @Adrian Waterworth

    You want to put them to sleep not bore them to death.

    God why don't have Ben Stein read the tax code to the kids.

  22. Lionel Baden


    Hammer -> Nail -> Head

  23. Anonymous Coward

    not toooo bad

    Like it. Worth a little laugh. Now something totally different and far more interesting ...

  24. klykx

    article title...

    The title suggests a german fingermouse

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    @Chris Williams

    "All ist klar?"

    that would be "Ist Alles klar?"

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