Saturday, November 27, 2021

France calls for the Wish app and site to be blocked

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Several leading French politicians have urged search engines and app stores to hide the Wish app and website after investigating the online marketplace.

Ministers Bruno Le Maire and Alain Griset, as well as French Secretary of State for the Digital Sector Cédric O, said in a joint statement that Wish had violated consumer rights by listing and selling products that did not comply with European regulations.

More than 100 products sold on Wish were tracked as part of an investigation by the French consumer rights and fraud agency.

Toys were found to be 95 percent non-compliant, of which 45 percent were dangerous, while electrical appliances were 95 percent found to be non-compliant, of which 90 percent were dangerous.

Wish removed the goods when they were told they were dangerous. However, the investigation found that “in most cases these products are available under a different name and sometimes even from the same seller”.

The administration also alleged that Wish does not keep a record of transactions involving non-compliant and dangerous products.

Most of the products listed on Wish come from China-based retailers, with the platform itself not holding any inventory.

According to the Direction Générale de la Concurrence, de la Consommation et de la Répression des Fraudes (DGCCRF), Wish was able to remain relatively unpredictable in app stores – essentially shadowbanning.

It is the first time that politicians have tried to implement these new online consumer protection powers of European law.

“These decisions are unique in Europe and are aimed at protecting consumers and ending Wish’s breaches of the safety obligations of the products it sells,” said a press release.

Wish did not respond to a request for comment from The independent one at the time of publication.

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