The days of fake reviews on Flipkart, Amazon, and other e-commerce sites may soon be over. Some products on e-commerce websites often feature fake reviews, which can be done to promote or demote them. Such fake reviews can be misleading for buyers. This has led to the government cracking down on fake reviews and unverified ratings.
In order to stop fake reviews of products online, the Indian government has drafted a framework. Consumers in India will benefit from the move by having more authentic and less misleading online interactions.
According to Reuters, the Department of Consumer Affairs set up a committee in June to investigate fake and deceptive reviews in e-commerce.
The vetting process for consumers has been criticized by consumers and industry experts in the past for downplaying negative reviews or accepting fake reviews. According to Sachin Taparia, founder of LocalCircles, a community platform, and pollster, the new guidelines are designed to increase transparency for consumers and brands. Community platform members were part of the committee that drafted the guidelines for the Department of Consumer Affairs.
Moreover, platforms such as Meta and Google will have to follow these rules, requiring them to verify the real person behind the review through 6-8 mechanisms. This could prevent reviews from fake accounts. Draft proposal details are not yet available.
There will be no mandatory guidelines at first. The government will see voluntary compliance with these guidelines, said Rohit Kumar Singh. Fake reviews might be made mandatory by the government if the menace grows.
According to Reuters, online companies have internal checks to combat false reviews, but failure to do so is not a compliance violation. Negative reviews could be suppressed if the guidelines become mandatory. Websites and apps that enable or plant reviews may also face action.