Consumer Protection on Social Media Platforms: Tackling the Challenges of Social Commerce
in T.Synodinou, Ph. Jougleux, C. Markou, Th. Prastitou, Eu Internet Law in the Digital Era (Springer, Forthcoming)
25 Pages Posted: 17 May 2019
Date Written: March 1, 2019
Social commerce represented at least $14 billion dollars in 2015, steadily increasing from previous years. A survey by Statista showed that 65.4% of US users had used a social media platform to make purchase directly through a post in 2017. As the size of social media worldwide continues to grow, social commerce is predicted to develop. As social commerce tries to expand its reach, trust in online platforms is essential. Yet, there is equally convincing evidence available that social media sites are increasingly used by fraudsters, a fact which could rapidly undermine consumer confidence. This chapter explores some key trends as to how social media platforms are used to advertise and buy/sell consumer goods. It shows some of the challenges faced by consumers, in particular with the rise of e-commerce scams perpetrated on social platforms. The article reflects on a range of avenues (self regulation, intermediary liability, collective actions, public enforcement)s to improve the protection of users that engage in social commerce or use social platforms more generally.
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