NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Tax and accounting software firms such as Intuit (INTU - Get Report) are getting ready to step well ... into it. "We are at a point now where we see the world shifting once again," Brad Smith, president and CEO of the Mountain View, Calif., company, told analysts in September. "End users no longer want to be consumers. We want to be participants."
Schmidt spent a good hour over the phone with me explaining his research into the eroding economics of tax prep and accounting in the information age. It was a familiar call, since I have seen the same trends grind the music, publishing and legal professions to a similar fine, white powder. "It is pretty much the emergence of the free online tax filing systems," he explained. Just like in music and books, there seems to be no end to the number of outlets offering all or part of Intuit's products for free or at no incremental cost.