Udemy Online Courses Class Action Lawsuit Over False Advertising and Pricing of Its Products
The plaintiffs in a proposed class action lawsuit claim that Udemy, Inc. falsely advertised “original” reference prices, leading customers to believe they were receiving a discount on the company’s instructional video courses.
Marion Williams v. Udemy, Inc.
In a new class action lawsuit, the plaintiffs claim that Udemy’s deceptive business practice of displaying falsely original prices on its online instructional courses, along with accompanying bogus discounts, has misled and damaged consumers and is continuing to distort markets.
Lead Plaintiff Marion Williams filed a nationwide class action lawsuit against Udemy on August 23 in the state of California. He alleges that the company’s false and misleading advertising, marketing, and pricing scheme violates California and other federal laws, which restrict the promotion of items for sale at a discount from previously advertised prices that are untrue.
The class action lawsuit alleges that Udemy falsely raises product prices and sells them at a reduced rate by portraying the discount as a deal.
The consequence is an artificial pricing differential that misleads consumers into believing the goods they are purchasing have a higher worth than the market has determined and stimulates them to make a purchase, the claim states.
The approach artificially inflates a product’s actual market price by increasing customers’ reference prices, allowing merchants to offer products at a premium to their actual market value and price — with consumers bearing the cost.
According to the lawsuit, Williams hired investigators to follow the pricing of specific courses listed for sale on Udemy.com at various intervals between 2019 and 2021. They discovered that the course Williams ordered had been priced with a bogus reference price as well as an associated discounted pricing for at least the 90-day period promptly preceding his purchase.
In September 2020, Williams purchased the course “AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate 2020” from the Udemy website. He claims that he purchased the course because it was on sale for $12.99, despite the fact that it had an original advertised price of $94.99 when he first saw it advertised.
Fear of Missing Good Deals
Due to the defendant’s deceptive reference price discounting scheme, the actual market value of the goods acquired by the plaintiff was artificially inflated, causing him to suffer a loss on his purchase.
The claim states that products advertised on Udemy.com are never sold at the stated reference price.
Thus, the advertised reference pricing is intended to persuade consumers that the products were previously offered at the reference price and will be once more if the buyer does not act quickly to purchase at the “discount” price.
According to the class action lawsuit, Udemy and other retailers engage in the illegal practice because they believe they can improve sales and profits by deceiving consumers into making decisions relying on advertised reference pricing.
The argument asserts that misleading advertising influences a consumer’s decision-making process in three ways:
- The price of a product is also regarded as an indicator of its quality
- Reference prices appeal to consumers’ desire for bargains or deals
- Consumers place a value on the psychological experience of receiving a product at a perceived discount.
According to the claim, vendors are well knowledgeable of consumers’ inclination for bargains and hence have an incentive to deceive them.
Williams wishes to represent everyone in the United States who has purchased a course from Udemy.com during a sale in the last four years. In addition, he alleges violations of the Consumers Legal Remedies Act, the False Advertising Law, and the Unfair Competition Law in California. Lastly, he is demanding monetary compensation, restitution, a declaration, and an injunction, as well as a jury trial.
Editor’s Note on Udemy False Pricing Class Action Lawsuit – Deceptive Discounts To Lure In Customers:
This article is written to inform you of the class action lawsuit against Udemy over allegedly violating unfair competition laws, false advertisement laws, and the consumer legal remedies act of California. Recently, a class action was also settled by Greystar over them allegedly charging tenants screening fees.
Case Name & No.: Marion Williams v. Udemy, Inc. Case No. 3:21-cv-06489
Jurisdiction: U.S. District Court Northern District Of California
Products/Services: Online educational courses
Allegations: Udemy allegedly displayed false prices on its product and accompanied it with bogus discounts
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