Italy Fines Amazon $10.68 Million for Automatic Subscription Settings

The Italian Competition Authority (AGCM) has imposed a $10.68 Million (EUR 10 million) fine on two Amazon companies. They are named Amazon Services Europe and Amazon EU. The fine is a result of an investigation that found Amazon automatically setting the frequent delivery option for many products on its Italian website.

This setting is part of Amazon's "Subscribe and Save" program, which offers perks like free shipping, discounts on packaging, and scheduled deliveries on eligible products. The program provides a discount of 5% to 15%, depending on how many products a customer subscribes to.

The authority argued that this setting limits customers' ability to make free choices because it pushes them towards repeating their orders instead of making one-time purchases. This setup could lead customers to buy items more regularly than they need, which restricts their freedom to decide.

The watchdog described Amazon's approach as not meeting the professional standards expected of a major online retailer. It expects Amazon to design its website in a way that allows customers to make informed choices freely.

Initially, the investigation also looked into Amazon’s practice of pre-selecting the paid fast delivery option. However, Amazon changed this to only offer the free delivery option as the default, which the authority accepted.

Amazon has expressed disagreement with the decision and plans to appeal. The company stated that the Subscribe and Save program has helped customers in Italy save over €40 million since its introduction.

Image: DIW-Aigen

Read next: Apple’s Woes Continue As Tech Giant Loses Top Spot In China’s Smartphone Market Amid Decline In Shipments
Previous Post Next Post