France calls on app stores & search engines to block Wish app & site

Leading politicians across France have reportedly asked app stores and search engines operating in the country to block the website and smartphone app of e-commerce platform Wish, following an investigation of the online marketplace.

Ministers Alain Griset and Bruno Le Maire, alongside Cédric O, the Secretary of State for France's Digital Sector issued a joint statement that said that the e-commerce platform had violated the nation’s consumer rights by listing as well as selling products that did not comply with EU regulations.

As part of an investigation conducted by a French administration responsible for looking into consumer rights and fraud cases, more than 100 products sold on Wish were tracked, with the probe findings unveiling that over 50% of the products listed were non-EU-compliant, and a large number were considered dangerous.

With respect to toys, more than 95% of were found to be non-EU-compliant, with 45% being dangerous. Meanwhile, for electrical appliances, more than 95% of were deemed non-EU-complaint, with 90% being labelled dangerous.

When Wish was informed that the commodities were unsafe, it was quick to de-list them from its platform; nonetheless, the investigation revealed that in most instances, those products continued to be sold under a different label, and often by the same seller.

According to the administration’s claims, Wish also does not maintain any records of non-compliant and unsafe product transactions.

A majority of Wish's products are sold by merchants that are based out of China, and the site does not have any inventory of its own. As per France’s DGCCRF, Wish remained considerably unaccountable as a result of this. However, recent changes to European regulations and the new consumer protection rules have given app stores and search engines the power to delist troublesome sites and apps, effectively blocking them.

According to Wish, the company is committed to creating a great user experience, and one of the ways to do so is by offering quality products and services to the customers.

The online shopping business further added that being a marketplace platform, Wish is not legally obligated to check over 150 million products listed on both website and application.

Source credit: https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/wish-app-france-shop-ban-b1963641.html