2022年1月29日

“Double 11” is a mirror to test the effectiveness of platform governance

“Double 11” is a mirror to test the effectiveness of platform governance

S editorial

Regulatory authorities to strengthen the governance of online shopping environment, ultimately to safeguard the rights of consumers and small and medium-sized businesses.

As the Singles Day shopping festival is about to enter its climax, one noticeable change is that this year’s event is much less combative. Many merchants are trying to open stores on multiple platforms, focusing on those with lower costs and greater support. From the perspective of consumers’ experience, shopping options during “Double 11” are more full.

The more refreshing “Double 11” is the result of a series of governance measures taken by regulatory authorities. I still remember that on November 10 last year, the State Administration for Market Regulation issued the Anti-Monopoly Guide on the Platform economy (Draft for Comments), proposing regulatory measures for the abuse of dominant market position in the platform economy. In February this year, revised anti-monopoly guidelines were officially released and implemented, explicitly requiring operators to choose between competing platforms as a factor for abuse of dominant market position.

This year’s “Double 11” is a test of the achievements of policy supervision in the past year, and can also be called a mirror of the economic governance of Internet platforms. Much of the change is in the details. For example, the pre-sale time of major platforms was advanced by four hours this year, so consumers no longer have to stay up late. The frequent “SMS bombing” of merchants in the past has also been reduced, which is attributed to the efforts of the regulatory authorities to regulate the “Double 11” SMS marketing behavior.

Platforms and merchants offer profits, consumers enjoy benefits from discounts and promotions, and promote overall sales — like all shopping nodes, the core business logic of “Double 11” is not complicated. However, the performance of the “Double 11” in the past decade and more has given consumers the feeling that there are more and more restrictions and the routines are changing. It is no longer simple, easy and clear to obtain tangible benefits. At the same time, merchants are forced to choose between platforms, which significantly limits their willingness to discount.

Therefore, the regulatory authorities to strengthen the governance of online shopping environment, especially against the platform abuse of market dominance of monopolistic behavior, in the final analysis to protect the rights of consumers and small and medium-sized businesses. After the platform no longer requires “two to choose one”, consumers can calmly choose goods on the platform they are accustomed to, and merchants also have the opportunity to “bargain” with big platforms, so as to strive for better development.

In a healthy market environment, the ability of market subjects may be high or low, but their right to participate in competition is equal, which is the common sense of market economy. Taking the opportunity of “Double 11” to reaffirm this common sense is of guiding significance for promoting the steady and long-term prosperity of the digital economy.

In fact, no matter it is incremental competition or stock competition, the development prospect of e-commerce platform is still broad, far from the need for “exclusion” and “internal friction”. In recent years, the e-commerce industry in rural areas has sprung up, and the slogan “e-commerce helps farmers” has been fully practiced. It is the right way for the platform to seek steady growth to constantly improve service quality and adhere to differentiated competition.

According to the White Paper on The Development of China’s Digital Economy released by the China Academy of Information and Communication Technology this year, the scale of China’s digital economy reached 39.2 trillion yuan in 2020, accounting for 38.6 percent of GDP, a nominal increase of 9.7 percent year-on-year. “Double 11” is a direct reflection of the prosperity level of the digital economy and a representative achievement of the innovative development of the digital economy. From creating a new consumption point to creating a healthier e-commerce ecological environment, the innovation of “Double 11” is always on the way.

On the eve of this year’s “Double 11”, relevant departments also held an administrative guidance meeting on the issue of the platform blocking website links, and continued to urge the platform to open up the ecosystem. However, according to the Beijing News Shell Financial reporter’s test, so far, the common apps of Internet users are still not “interconnected” in the real sense. This requires platforms to “tear down walls” more thoroughly and achieve practical connectivity. Only in this way can consumers feel convenience and platforms gain the power to “start again”. The experience of the market economy tells people that only those who enjoy their success will go down, and only those who are compatible and inclusive can gain momentum. This is particularly evident in the history of the Internet industry.

Where there is market, there will be competition, and where there is transaction, there will be price difference. It is foreseeable that the game between platforms, merchants and consumers will continue. However, every game should be placed in the framework of rules, platform in accordance with the law to carry out the competition and attract more users, businesses honest management, based on product quality and service, consumers also respect the principle of fair trade, reasonably “uproot wool”, “11” double plate can be bigger and bigger, make “double 11” to promote the development of digital economy innovation goals to achieve.

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