The TurboTax Turing Test

Dear TurboTax,

Thank you for making my taxes kind of annoying instead of a total nightmare. Sure, it cost most of my tax return to pay for the TurboTax version for under-employed freelancers, but that’s fine. You made it easier to turn a stack of 1099s and scribbled receipts into the single-digit check I’ll be receiving from the state of North Carolina. This is the very first year I’ve filed on time, and it’s all thanks to you. (Well, thanks to you and a nagging worry that I might be paying this year instead of receiving, and I’ve heard the IRS is less forgiving about late filing when one is meant to be sending them money.)

But a Captcha at the end? Seriously? A check to see if I’m human after all that? Turbo, honey, if there were a program that could find my gross income from last year’s return, the employer numbers from a half dozen 1099s, my date of birth, my social security number, my special TurboTax pin, my routing number and bank account number, and then put all those numbers into the right little boxes on a hundred different pages… well, if there were a bot like that, I don’t think it would be thwarted by a Captcha image!


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0 Responses to The TurboTax Turing Test

  1. jfount says:

    Wooo! I received the princely sum of *eight American dollars* from the state of Wisconsin this year, which is a big improvement over last year’s $1 check.

  2. Meg says:

    Haha! I’m getting $2. Which is enough for a cup of coffee, so thanks, NC!

    I’m actually thrilled I got a refund at all, because a large portion of my income was freelance assignments (Meg: I rock, I’m a paid writer!) without taxes taken out, but fortunately, I made so little money (IRS: No Meg, you don’t really rock.) that I got the earned income credit!

  3. Andrew says:



    Enjoy that coffee!

    I can’t seriously believe they thought that CAPTCHA was necessary. Never mind.

    I don’t know what the situation is like in the States, but I can tell you that as a former CPA in Australia, the Australian Taxation Office does not care two hoots if you submit your return late – as long as they owe you money, not the other way around.

    Basically, if you owe them money, get those returns in quickly or they’ll slap a whole heap of fines on you. But if they owe you money, they don’t care at all how late your submission is.

    I would imagine it would be similar in your country.

  4. Meg says:

    I think that’s the way it goes here, too.

    CPA to Korean ESL teacher, huh? That’s got to be quite the culture shock!

  5. Pingback: Times You Don’t Need a Captcha Check : HyperGadget

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