Do you use digital platforms (online intermediation services) to sell your product or service? Digital platforms must give you clear information, according to the Platform-to-Business Regulation (P2B Regulation). If the platform does not comply with the P2B rules, you have to be able to resolve this with the platform. Non-European platforms must also follow the rules from the P2B regulation.
What is a digital platform (online intermediation service)?
An online intermediation service can be a large or a small platform. You can use the platform to sell your products or services to consumers.
Examples of digital platforms are:
- reservation platforms for restaurants
- online marketplaces offering clothing or meals
- comparison sites for airline tickets or energy contracts
- app stores
Digital platforms have to offer you clear information (transparency obligation) on, among others:
- how the products or services are ordered
- what the possibilities are to determine the order of products by paying for it
- which platform data can be accessed by entrepreneurs using the platform
- how the platform or you can end the contract
- the reasons a platform can remove you. If a platform decides to remove you, then they should let you know at least 30 days before removal.
The platform must provide this information clearly and comprehensibly in the platform’s general terms and conditions. These general terms and conditions should be easy to find and read. These rules also apply to online search engines.
Why P2B rules?
More often entrepreneurs need platforms to sell their products or services. The platforms can make use of that situation by giving little or vague information. With the P2B rules entrepreneurs and consumers are better protected.
Help solve problems
The digital platform you use to sell your products or services should help you solve problems (dispute resolution). The platform must, for example:
- have a complaints desk where you can report for free if the platform does not keep to the rules
- appoint a mediator from outside the organisation to help you resolve a problem between you and the platform
This obligation for a complaints desk and a mediator applies to platforms with 50 or more staff and an annual turnover of 10 million euro or more.
What to do if you have a problem with a digital platform?
If you have a problem with a digital platform, you can:
- Try tot solve the problem with the platform. You report your complaint tot the digital platform’s free complaints desk. If necessary you can use an external mediator appointed by the platform.
- Go to court if you cannot reach an agreement with the platform. The court can assess whether the platform complies with the P2B rules.
Report to the ACM
You can report to the Authority for Consumers & Markets (ACM). The ACM can use your notification to investigate the platform you have a complaint about. As soon as the bill on the P2B regulation is passed by the Upper and Lower Houses (Eerste en Tweede Kamer) of parliament, the ACM act by issuing a fine, for example. The Tweede Kamer is expected to vote on the bill in the autumn of 2023.