Temu accused of manipulation and fraud: UFC-Que Choisir files complaint against the Chinese giant

Temu accused of manipulation and fraud: UFC-Que Choisir files complaint against the Chinese giant
Temu accused of manipulation and fraud: UFC-Que Choisir files complaint against the Chinese giant

By

Raphael Lardeur

Published on

May 16, 2024 at 11:01 a.m.

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Temu in the sights of UFC-Que Choisir. The consumer defense association file a complaint against the e-commerce site low cost.

The reasons ? The Chinese site would not guarantee its “users a safe, predictable and trustworthy online environment”, reveals the press release, published on May 16, 2024.

Based on the “Digital Service Act”

A true internet giant of online commerce and launched in Europe in 2023, the Temu site “is the subject of much criticism”, details UFC-Que Choisir.

On the basis of Digital Service Act (DSA), a European regulation which aims to make platforms and 16 other associations accountable, the complaint was brought before the Arcom (the Regulatory Authority for Audiovisual and Digital Communication).

A plant taken “very seriously” and seen as an opportunity to “continue the dialogue in order to improve services to consumers”, explains a Temu spokesperson to -.fr.

What is the site criticized for?

The list is long. The UFC-Que Choisir and the European Bureau of Consumer Unions (BEUC)* “observed” several shortcomings:

  • “Temu does not provide sufficient traceability of professionals who sell products,” indicates the association created in 1951. A “major” offense because consumers must know “who to contact in the event of a problem” to obtain “replacement, repair or refund”;
  • The site is called “ to explain how its recommendation systems work and the value of the selection criteria for displaying individual products”;
  • Temu is accused of not “providing high levels of security for minors by not making access to the service conditional on age verification”;
  • Temu uses a number of handling techniquescalled “dark patterns”, notably through the use of fake time counters or by creating a so-called limited stock creating a sense of urgency.

“Be transparent”

Contacted by -.frthe Temu site says it has “listened carefully to feedback from customers, regulators and consumer advocacy groups” since arriving on the European market a year ago.

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The Chinese brand claims to be committed to “being transparent and fully respecting all applicable laws and regulations”, without specifying how it would defend itself against the complaint.

*Testachats/Testaankoop (Belgium), BNAAC (Bulgaria), dTest (Czech Republic), Forbrugerrådet Tænk (Denmark), Kuluttajaliitto ry (Finland), EKPIZO and KEPKA (Greece), Federacja Konsumentow (Poland), DECO (Portugal), Spoločnosť ochrany spotrebiteľov (SOS) Poprad (Slovakia), CECU and OCU (Spain), Sveriges Konsumenter (Sweden), Altroconsumo (Italy), Consumentenbond (Netherlands) and ULC (Luxembourg). BEUC, for its part, filed a complaint with the European Commission.

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