Pretty sure all retailers are exempt from tax on out-of-state sales.
I don't think this is true in most states. If I as a resident of MA buy something from a company in CA, the company doesn't have to collect the tax and pay it to MA, but I am still responsible for doing that.
You are responsible for doing that for Internet purchases as well. See orev's comment above:
Everyone is required to pay sales tax for purchases made over the Internet, there's just no way for the states to enforce it. That's why most state tax forms now ask you what purchases you've made online so they can add that into the tax. If you don't answer this question truthfully, then your liable for tax evasion.
I think it's more of a "Greek tax" -- you are supposed to pay it, but almost nobody does. The current system is pretty unfair to local retails. I recently bought a new camera. My local camera store, Keeble and Schuchat, had it for $819. Amazon.com had it for $819. Santa Clara County sales tax adds an extra $75. How many people are choosing Amazon over a local retailer in that kind of situation -- I bet a lot do.
Well that's interesting. I can't help but think internet businesses have been spurred by this lax enforcement.
So the real question is should they continue to enjoy this oversight.
I suppose the eventual taxation of all online commerce is inevitable.
Seems to me that if the present conditions continued, eventually tax would be forwarded to carriers(UPS,FedEx,USPS). Maybe this is pessimistic but I see all online purchases being charged sales tax in the future. Of course, the bureaucrats will have to set up some system for that, which will take years if not decades.