Gatchalian wants Lazada, Shopee, Facebook to be held liable forselling violative products

Gatchalian wants Lazada, Shopee, Facebook to be held liable for
selling violative products

By Ernie Reyes

MANILA — Electronic commerce or e-Commerce platforms along with
parties or merchants engaged in the sale of prohibited digital
products can be held solitarily liable under the proposed Internet
Transactions Act, Senator Win Gatchalian said.

In a statement, Gatchalian said the National Telecommunications
Commission’s (NTC) issued a show-cause as well as cease and desist
orders to Lazada, Shopee, and Facebook Marketplace after
advertisements for the sale of SMS blast machines were found available
in the sites.

“The reason why we included the joint and solidary liability in Senate
Bill No. 1591 is to make these platforms responsible for protecting the
interest of the consumers,” Gatchalian, principal author of the bill,

Under Section 17 of SB 1591 or the proposed Internet Transactions Act,
if the online eCommerce platform knows or should have known that the
digital products sold do not comply with the law or if the online
merchant is not duly registered with the appropriate regulatory
agencies and the online eCommerce platform permits the online merchant
to sell digital products, both shall share solidary liability.

The NTC said the sale of text or SMS blaster machines and similar
equipment “appears to violate” the Radio Control Law and other
regulations such as its Memorandum Order 01-02-2013 or the Prohibition
of Portable Cellular Mobile Repeater and Portable Cell Site Equipment.

The bill at hand seeks to protect consumers from unethical, illegal,
and unscrupulous business practices of those engaged in eCommerce,
Gatchalian explained.

“Online shopping or eCommerce has radically changed the way we live
our lives. Whether as a consumer or a seller, technology and the
internet have dramatically transformed the way businesses and
transactions are conducted,” Vice-Chairperson of the Senate Economic
Affairs Committee added.

“Hangad natin na mapadali ang mga serbisyong iniaalok sa online ngunit
meron at meron pa ring nagsasamantala sa ganitong platform at ito ang
nais nating tugunan dito sa panukalang ito,” he said. (ai/mtvn)

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