NEW DELHI: India launched a crackdown on Monday against fake consumer reviews and unverified ratings in a bid to make the online world and e-commerce more authentic and less misleading for users.

The government has drafted guidelines for companies from Alphabet Inc’s Google, Meta Platform’s Facebook and Instagram, and Amazon.com Inc to travel sites and food delivery apps that depend on reviews to validate products and services. Positive reviews help generate sales and interest from potential buyers.

Some companies have been criticised by consumers and industry experts for downplaying negative reviews, or accepting fake ratings, making the vetting process difficult for buyers.

“Feedback mechanisms such as reviews are essential for consumer interest. We welcome the steps being taken by the government ... and are obliged to be a part of the constituted committee,” said a spokesperson for Zomato.

Published in Dawn, November 22nd, 2022

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