Picture this: You're scrolling through the Instagram page of a local online shop and you see something you like. You consider making a purchase, but naturally, before you decide to spend, you've got to know the price of the item to see if it fits your budget. Unfortunately, there's no price on the post and no comprehensive price list on the page. Now you've got to message the seller—don't worry, we know the struggle. Sure, it's not rocket science to send a DM, but it always add an extra step to the buying process. Plus, oftentimes, you'll find out through a message that the item is actually way out of your budget—now you put in all that effort for nothing. Annoying, isn't it? Well apparently, it's also against the law.
Here's Why Online Sellers Are Required to Display the Prices of their Products
The Department of Trade and Industry today, November 25, posted a lighthearted announcement on Facebook reminding folks not to be "evil sellers," referencing the popular "Evil X Be Like" meme. They noted in the post that any product being sold (online or otherwise) is always required to have a visible price tag. This is according to Republic Act No. 73944 a.k.a. the Consumer Act of the Philippines, which was made to protect the interests of consumers and establish standards of conduct for businesses and industries. While the law was established in 1992, it also applies to online businesses.
Article 81 of the Consumer Act, titled "Price Tag Requirement" states that "it shall be unlawful to offer any consumer product for retail sale to the public without an appropriate price tag, label, or marking publicly displayed to indicate the price of each article." Article 82, on the other hand, notes that the price "must be written clearly" while Article 83 emphasizes "visible placement of price tags." So no, online sellers, PM is, in fact, not the key. Price tags must be immediately visible.
The Consumer Act also states that anyone who violates the provisions of Article 81 to 83 for the first time shall be subject to a fine of no less than P200, but no more than P5,000. In their Facebook post, the DTI also noted that should you spot any online sellers not following the prescribed price-tag requirements of the Consumer Act, you can file a complaint through their official website.
*This story originally appeared on Spot.ph. Minor edits have been made by the Preview.ph editors.
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