Despite the advancement’s amazon is going through with their mini scouts and the Ring camera, it seems like some essential issues need to be addressed.
According to an inquiry by The Wall Street Journal, Amazon is allegedly selling thousands of products that are mislabeled, prohibited, or declared unsafe by federal agencies. It discovered that on the on Amazon, no fewer than 4,152 products that are prohibited by federal agencies, were freely accessible to purchase.
The list of mislabeled, banned and unsafe products, which was found by the Journal, is shocking, including “FDA-approved” products that the agency has never examined, medicines that lack child safety warnings, banned baby sleeping wedges, illegally imported prescription medicines, electronics that falsely claim UL-certified safety ratings, toys with unsafe amounts of lead or potential shock hazards, and more. Many of the products found had the Amazon Choice label of the company, which is not something that you should put any trust in automatically. Perhaps worst of all, the investigation found at least 157 items that Amazon said it explicitly banned.
The problem here is the huge third-party selling network of Amazon that sells freely on Amazon and even ships from the warehouses of the company if they participate in the “Fulfilled by Amazon” program. Third-party sellers ‘ product pages can be difficult to differentiate from products “Sold by Amazon.com.” The only thing that shows who the real vendor is a tiny line of text.
There’s a large distinction between purchasing from Amazon and purchasing from somewhere else through Amazon. In other words, Amazon does not assume legal accountability for unsafe products because it is not technically the seller. Any disputes with the third-party vendors must be discussed with them directly.
It wasn’t always like this, but as marketplace sellers exploded onto the scene through Amazon, the moderation of those listings by the company (done by a combination of human workers and flags of machine learning) simply couldn’t maintain up with the sheer quantity of products. Without a significant change in policy in Amazon, it seems that clients will continue to be alone when it comes to making intelligent purchases from the internet retail giant, particularly when it comes to third-party vendors. Joanna Stern of the Journal has some suggestions on how to prevent unsafe purchases.