The drama continues regarding the Temu Conspiracy! On Thursday, Chinese fast-fashion e-commerce giant Temu got hit with a major complaint from the European Union over potentially breaching online content rules.


The Plot Thickens…

So, here’s the deal: the European Union’s Digital Services Act requires online marketplaces to tackle illegal and harmful content. This includes counterfeit products. Essentially, they’ve got to keep things clean and safe for consumers.

The BEUC, a Pan-European consumers organisation, has raised the alarm with the European Commission, and 17 of its members from countries like France, Italy, and the Netherlands have also filed their complaints with their national authorities.

The main concern? According to BEUC, Temu, which boasts a whopping 75 million monthly EU users as of March, isn’t providing consumers with crucial info about the sellers on its platform or whether their products meet EU safety standards.

And there’s more. The complaint claims Temu uses sneaky tactics, known as dark patterns, to get consumers to spend more than they intend. Plus, there’s not enough transparency about how it recommends products.

BEUC’s Director General, Monique Goyens, didn’t mince words, saying, “Temu is being complacent here because it is breaching the EU’s Digital Services Act. Products sold on marketplaces, whether online or offline, whether they are European, American, or Chinese, must be safe and comply with European law if they sell to European consumers.”


How did Temu respond?

In response, Temu, which only entered the EU market just over a year ago, said it’s committed to aligning with local practices and regulations. The company stated, “Regarding the BEUC complaint, we take it very seriously and will study it thoroughly. We hope to continue our dialogue with the relevant stakeholders to improve Temu’s service for consumers.”

I think the main takeaway here is that this wasn’t a surprise. Anyone who has shopped on Temu before, and I’ll put my hand up and admit that I have, will know that it was never the most trustworthy app. The outrageously low prices of their products were a main concern for many in the past. It’s not the first time data privacy has been questioned on an online store anyway. So, the moral of the story? Putting Temu aside, never go to dodgy stores or websites for a good deal. The consequences if you’re unlucky will cost you a lot more than what you saved buying elsewhere.

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