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DTI clampdown on erring shopping platforms welcomed

Digital Pinoys

A network of digital advocates welcomed today the ongoing effort of the Department of Trade and Industry to clampdown on deceptive, defective and regulated items listed on online shopping platforms.

Digital Pinoys national campaigner Ronald Gustilo said that the effort of the trade department to curb lemon items found in online shopping platforms is a welcome development for consumers.

“For so long, consumers have been complaining against fake, deceptive and defective items listed for sale in various online shopping platforms. Now that the trade department is keeping the online shopping sites and their sellers in check, the worries of the consumers will be lessened.”

Consumer issues with online shopping platforms range from poor product quality, fake items, tampered parcels, late delivery, poor customer support and even scam shops selling high ticket items, but sending out cheap items like tissue papers or wet wipes and other like-priced items.

Gustilo also urged the Department of Trade and Industry to penalize online shopping platforms who fails to act upon customer complaints despite providing proof that their complaint is valid.

“There are also cases in which the customer support of online shopping platforms failed to resolve the concern of a consumer despite providing proof that their complaint is valid. Usually, DTI tries to mediate these kind of cases. However, we think that the platform should be penalized for failing to act upon the complaint. Shopping platforms should resolve valid customer issues as soon as possible.”

Deplatform sellers of fake, deceptive items

Gustilo also urged online shopping platforms to deplatform shops selling fake and deceptive items, which makes the bulk of the complaints filed. Gustilo also said that shops selling items that may be prone to abuse such as fake protocol license plates and uniforms and stickers of law enforcement agencies and other government offices should be removed from their platforms so that they will not be easily accessible to everyone. He also urged the trade department to ban the sale of such items.

“We have seen too many complaints of fake and deceptive products and these are the bulk of consumer complaints. Online shopping apps should be proactive in keeping their platforms safe and free of illegal products. DTI is also urged to ban the sale in online shopping platforms of items such as fake protocol license plates, uniforms and emblems, insignias and stickers of law enforcement and other government agencies as they are prone to abuse from unscrupulous individuals.”

Reference: Ronald Gustilo, Digital Pinoys, National Campaigner