You know you're doing something right (or horribly wrong) when the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) starts paying attention.
The trade commission has fined fast fashion behemoth Fashion Nova for blocking thousands of negative reviews on their website from 2015 to2019. It’s the first time a company has been penalized by a federal agency for suppressing reviews.
It's not the first time the FTC has punished Fashion Nova—in 2020, they paid US$9.3 million to customers for breaking their own shipping and refund policies.
Paying up: Suppressing negative reviews for flashy tops and bodycon dresses prevents customers from making an informed decision about their Miami weekend trip haul, while Fashion Nova profited.
- Fashion Nova will pay up$4.2 million and post all future reviews to settle the allegations but says the FTC's allegations are "inaccurate and deceptive" and that they fixed the issue as soon as it became aware of it.
Zoom out: The agency has issued new guidance for online retailers and review platforms to avoid misleading customers in the future.
Despite some questionable marketing tactics and labour practices that have drawn the ire of critics, fast fashion doesn't appear to be slowing down. Gen-Z fast-fashion giant Shein, which also happens to be one of the world's fastest-growing e-commerce companies, has revived plans to go public in the US later this year.