Online shopping was a way of life during the epidemic. Taipei City lodged the highest number of consumer complaints among all municipalities last year with over 18,000. Online and television shopping disputes ranked first, while art and performance and travel disputes entered the top five categories for the first time.
Taipei City received 18,753 consumer complaints in 2022, the most in Taiwan although the number was a 3 percent decrease from the year before. Of this number, 3,054 involved online and television purchases.
Yang Li-ping, Consumer Protection Official, Dept. of Legal Affairs, Taipei: “Most disputes are over defective items. There are very clear regulations governing custom-made items and perishable products. The seven-day return period doesn't apply to these.”
Transportation disputes ranked second with 1,724 complaints, followed by delivery platform disputes with 1,319; art and performance disputes with 1,195; online gaming disputes with 986; and travel disputes with 842. The Taipei City Department of Legal Affairs says the lifting of restrictions in the post-pandemic era and the resumption of large-scale events and the spike in entertainment spending caused disputes in the "art and performance" and "travel" categories to enter the top five for the first time.
Yang Li-ping, Consumer Protection Official, Dept. of Legal Affairs, Taipei: “In the case of a consumer that subscribed to (a delivery platform), they found that they still had to pay a transaction fee on every order even if their orders met the original threshold. The consumer wanted to cancel their subscription. If we're talking about disputes involving international travel agencies, they're often due to overseas operators not being able to deal with a dispute in an effective or reasonable manner.”
Under online shopping platform management regulations promulgated by Taipei last November, online platforms are held responsible for the actions of individual sellers and required to have transaction verification and consumer dispute resolution mechanisms in place.