Update on Aug. 11, 2.15pm: This article was updated with Shopee's statement.
One person in Malaysia recently came across some rather disturbing material on Shopee's website.
She flagged it on Twitter on Aug. 5 by posting several photos of the listing, asking if it was real.
"Good stuff for sale"
The listing displayed photos of what appeared to be several young boys of varying ages, with some shots seemingly taken in their homes.
It was titled: "Good stuff for sale".
Priced at RM6,942 (S$2,145), the seller said it provided "free shipping" to Kuala Lumpur.
The 'product' was included in the "Personal Pleasure" category, under the Health & Beauty section.
More details provided in the product's description (in Malay) hinted to the unsavoury nature of the listing.
"masturbation material to be sold.
vintage limited items.
can PM (private message) to negotiate the price.
love ms puiyi"
Listing has been deleted
The tweet has since garnered over 1,300 retweets, with netizens questioning if Shopee reviews the products and moderates the listings before they are posted on the platform.
On the same day, Shopee Malaysia responded on Twitter, stating that they take such matters seriously.
They added that "action has been taken", and urged customers to report other such listings.
The listing depicting young boys has since been deleted.
Thank you for highlighting this to us as we do take this matter seriously. The action has been taken to the above listing and do report to us if have found a similar listing 🙏— Shopee Malaysia (@ShopeeMY) August 5, 2022
In response to Mothership's queries, Shopee said it has zero tolerance for the sale of prohibited items on its platform, including any form of abusive material.
Shopee requires its sellers to comply with local laws and regulations as well as the platform's own policies.
The company stated that it has removed the offensive listing and permanently banned the seller’s account.
"We will also cooperate with the authorities in any investigation," Shopee said.
Shopee's regulations against prohibited items
According to Shopee Singapore's website, becoming a seller on the marketplace is a fuss-free process.
One can start earning after downloading the app, creating an account, uploading their products and filling in the product details.
On a page detailing guidelines and advisories for sellers, Shopee wrote that listings for products like illicit drugs, prescription-only or pharmacy medicines, medicine or supplements with false/deceptive claims, weapons, cigarettes, and wildlife products are considered prohibited listings.
Here's the link to the full list of prohibited items.
Sellers who want to sell alcohol, condoms, personal mobility devices, self-defence sticks etc. must submit a valid license to Shopee which will be subject to approval.
Any seller who lists prohibited items on Shopee will incur penalty points.
Shopee's penalty points system has varying tiers of penalties, ranging from exclusion from the platform's marketing campaigns, to deboosting of products, to suspension of listing creation and updates, and the most severe, freezing of the seller's account.
Top photo from softcrocodile / Twitter