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  Taiwan Competition Law Update
Print | Date: 2022-04-15  

Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission Fines Ecommerce Platforms for “Bait-and-switch” Misconduct Control Cases

On April 12, 2022, Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission (the “TFTC”) fined e-commerce platform companies, Kubobrothers Corp. (“Kubobrothers”) and Mobix Corp. (“Mobix”), for unfair conduct pursuant to Article 25 of Taiwan’s Fair Trade Act (the “TFTA”).

Kubobrothers and Mobix had used “search engine optimization” (SEO) by paying for keyword searches for products that they did not actually sell. So, when customers searched for certain products, they would see search results for those products and be directed to the Kubobrothres and Mobix sites but may then be offered alternate products to purchase. This conduct would not only increase the traffic directed to their platforms, despite not carrying the products being sought by those customers, but would also entice arriving users to purchase alternative products offered by their sites, which would mean that the original brands being sought would lose out on being purchased. The TFTC ruled that such “bait-and-switch” conduct had not only harmed the interests of consumers but could serve as a model that other platforms may emulate. Therefore, the TFTC imposed a fine of NT$ 2 million (approximately US$ 69,000) upon Kubobrothers and NT$ 800,000 (approximately US$ 27,600) upon Mobix.

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This publication is intended to highlight selected legal developments and not to be comprehensive nor to provide legal advice. If you have any questions on issues reported here or if you have any issues you would like to see covered in future editions, please contact the editors:

Fran Wang, at +886-2-8725-6607, franwang@yangminglaw.com

    
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