Consumer's Telegram March 2021Insert of n. 22 - Editorial office: Centro Europeo Consumatori (European Consumer Centre Italy - Bolzano office)
Automatic and Tacit RenewalConcluding an online subscription is easy: you can just subscribe, for example, to a specialized magazine, confirm your data and you are ready to immerse yourself in an exciting reading. But attention must be paid to the tacit and automatic renewal of the subscription, very often foreseen in the general terms and conditions. Some European Legislators - Austria and France in particular - have intervened to ensure that the tacit and automatic renewal becomes better clarified to consumers, and that they are put in a position to be able to withdraw in time. For more information: https://bit.ly/2NsCbDQ.
5 Years from the first Conflict ResolutionOn February 15th, the ODR platform celebrated 5 years of activity. It is an interactive website set up by the European Commission to resolve disputes arising from online purchases, both nationally and cross-border. To use the services offered by the ODR platform, you need to create your own account, which will allow you to access a personal dashboard through which you can monitor the status of the complaint. To start the procedure, you have to simply fill in a form. You can then choose whether to send a complaint to the seller and request the intervention of an ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) body or to negotiate the resolution directly with the seller. For more information: https://bit.ly/3ujplIB.
FACEBOOK AND PRIVACY
7 million fine from the AGCMAlready in 2018, the Italian Competition Authority had sanctioned Facebook Ireland Ltd. and its parent company Facebook Inc for 5 million euros, having ascertained that the social media giant misleadingly induced users to register on its platform by not informing them immediately and adequately – during the activation of the account – of the collection activity, with commercial intent, of the data provided by them and, more generally, of the remunerative purposes underlying the service. Furthermore, for the Antitrust Authority, the information provided by Facebook was too generic and incomplete and did not provide an adequate distinction between the use of data necessary for the personalization of the service (with the aim of facilitating socialization with other users) and the use of data to carry out targeted advertising campaigns. Given that the two companies (Facebook Ireland Ltd. and Facebook Inc) had not published the corrective declaration and had not substantially ceased the established incorrect practice, the AGCM has imposed a fine for a total of 7 million euros. More information on the AGCM website at the link: https://bit.ly/3aLPx7b.
CASE OF THE MONTH
An Italian consumer has taken out a paid premium subscription on an German dating platform. According to the agreements, she would have had to pay just under 40 euros a month for a year of service. After ten days (within the legal withdrawal period of 14 days), however, she decided to withdraw from the contract. The operator of the platform then asked her to pay 323 Euro for partial use, almost 70% of the annual fee, even though the consumer had hardly used the service. Failing to reach an agreement with the operator, the consumer turned to the European Consumer Center Italy, where she was explained that the European Court of Justice ruled on this issue at the end of last year. According to the Court, the calculation of that compensation must be made in relation to the period in which the service was used. Thanks to the intervention of colleagues from the European Consumer Center Germany, it was possible to fully enforce this principle with the operator of the platform for singles: the entire request for 323 Euros was canceled.
You can find more information on the decision of the European Court of Justice on our website at https://bit.ly/3qKAtfx.