Government drafts framework to restrict fake reviews on e-commerce websites
India on Monday launched a crackdown on fake reviews and unverified ratings in a bid to make online interaction and e-commerce more authentic and less misleading to users.
The government has formulated a framework for companies ranging from the alphabet‘s The GoogleAnd the meta Platform Facebook And the InstagramAnd the Amazon.com, as well as travel websites or food delivery apps that rely on consumer reviews to validate products and services. Positive reviews help generate sales and interest from potential buyers.
Some companies have been criticized by consumers and various industry experts for downplaying negative reviews, or for accepting fake reviews, making vetting difficult for buyers.
The companies did not immediately respond to an email from Reuters seeking comment.
The Department of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution said the Department of Consumer Affairs set up a committee in June to develop a framework for checking fake and misleading reviews in e-commerce.
said Sachin Taparia, founder of LocalCircles, a community and polling platform that made the initial submission to the Ministry of Consumer Affairs and was part of the guideline drafting committee.
“As far as platforms like Google and Facebook go, the new rules will require them to verify the authenticity of the real person behind a review through 6 to 8 specific mechanisms which means that fake accounts created just to write a review will either disappear over time or they will no longer be valid,” Taparia said.
Full details of the proposal have not yet been released.
“We don’t want to get rid of this. We will first see voluntary compliance with these guidelines. And if we see that the risk continues to grow, we may make this mandatory,” Rohit Kumar Singh, secretary of the Department of Consumer Affairs, told reporters in India. New Delhi.
The Indian Standards Bureau The ministry said the assessment of compliance.
Online companies say they have internal audits to combat fake reviews, but failure to do so at this time is not a breach of compliance.
If the guidelines become mandatory, Taparia said, companies could face action for unfair business practices, to suppress negative reviews or to enable the planting of fake reviews.
© Thomson Reuters 2022