The court found online commerce is just as subject to Hawaii's general excise tax as local brick-and-mortar businesses, said Attorney General Doug Chin. "It's a privilege to do business in Hawaii. Bottom line, these online travel companies derived substantial revenues from the sale of Hawaii hotel rooms and they need to pay their fair share," Chin said in a statement. Hawaii's tax department in 2010 assessed general excise and transit accommodations taxes against the online travel companies for back taxes starting from 2000. The companies refused to pay, saying they didn't generate revenue in Hawaii. Get the full story at SFGate