Saturday, July 6, 2013

Raw Nerves




Finally after all these years of pushing buttons, I was banned from the Etsy forums today. They sent an email saying I was banned because of this comment:

>>>Your shop and website are amazing- MASSIVE amount of stuff, it must be overwhelming to make all these by yourself. There's no mention of other team members in your profile. Etsy requires collectives (ie shops who need more than one person to make what they make) be stated clearly so I assume you work alone. Your studio must be huge!

Most people would look at your stuff and assume it's not handmade, but then if it wasn't you wouldn't be here!<<<

Which was on a thread started by this woman. Look at the shirts she has in her feedback, now look at the shirts available! She was illegally selling Tshirts from The Mountain. She's even changed her shop name- she was pretending to be them and pretending the shirts were handmade by her. The owner of The Mountain even stopped by on the thread to let us know!

Anyway, apparently Etsy have a rule where you can't tell people if they're doing something that breaks Etsy rules. (Instead of helpfully telling people where they're going wrong, you're supposed to REPORT THEIR SHOP and let Etsy deal with it. No wonder their 'integrity team' are constantly overwhelmed with shops to investigate.) Even though that thread was 4 or 5 days ago and they just muted me today.

Because it's not the real reason!

The real reason they're banning me because I've been vocal and supportive of the protests around their sudden decision THAT RAW CRYSTALS ARE NOT LEGITIMATE SUPPLY and they're going to start requesting people take them down. Seriously. The only stones allowed now have to either be in some way visibly changed by the seller (wrapped, set in bezel, polished, etc), they have to have a flat back so they're considered a cabochon, or they must be drilled so they become a bead.

Here's the link to the thread in which Etsy lays down the word (see first Admin response, Sarah). As you can see this is not the most popular decision they'd made, the whole thread has been hijacked by outrage.

Good to see Etsy spending some time making their site legit huh? God forbid they should spend time getting rid of the shops who are doing the real damage, like all the fucking Chinese resellers. Not that they'd get rid of them, after all, they make Etsy so much money!

This place is fucked. One seller who supplies raw stones he mines himself has started sticking little paper mustaches to his stones, so they qualify as handmade. Meanwhile, people dip something in neon paint and it's handmade. A room of 500 Indian girls on sewing machines can be called a collective if the boss puts all their names on his profile. You can sell paper straws as supplies, and re-package stickers as handmade if you make your wrapping super-cute enough. (That shop has been a featured seller on Etsy before, by the way.)

Etsy has become a wasteland of loopholes, get-arounds and unbridled resellers. It makes a mockery of the notion of handmade and let's you call something made in 1993 'vintage'. UGH.

19 comments:

Star of the East said...

Penny, what a shame!

I've long given up to make some sense of Etsy's politics. They are totally aloof to any constructive feedback.

They are a corporation like any other and that is that, it is all business, don't let anybody be fooled.

13 said...

I avoid the forums because they make me want to punch etsy's eyes out! Firstly their stupid list crap thing, so pointless and for those like me who do treasuries it means I can't use the shmetsy treasury tool where I could make a treasury and tell sellers in 5 mins!
With the raw rocks it's idiotic, this is the most eco friendly supply you can get! What next found objects, bones, coins?
You'll find that etsy will soon try and introduce an authenticity system where sellers have to prove the source of their products and this is where the big guys will get in and the small sellers will be eliminated.

Chrisy said...

Oh you little stirrer you...good on you...can't believe raw stones aren't okay in supplies...what strange thinking...love the moustaches idea. Let's face it, if etsy wanted to get rid of resellers they could...they're not hard to find...but they're money makers so.....

Lucie said...

This Etsy thing about raw crystals is just nonsense, obviously, only money makes sense now... so sad!

wanda miller said...

just keep doin' what YOU DO! I love it all!!!

Alex said...

Etsy has a very clear bottom line, and it's "get the money." They've been turning a blind eye to resellers for years and instead punishing legit sellers for daring to say anything. It's the utmost in bullshit. Though I have no idea what would motivate the decision about the crystals.

I say try selling the crystals as vintage... they ARE rather old ;-P

Anonymous said...

you want life to be fair, so do I, but it is not at all, and you know it better than most, be strong, look beyond the small stuff

fanciful devices said...

i cant even... this is why i avoid the forums. this is why i avoid even newspapers! really. fuck. i adore raw stones. and you do have to fucking get them out of the earth. goddamn it.

fanciful devices said...

i cant even... this is why i avoid the forums. this is why i avoid even newspapers! really. fuck. i adore raw stones. and you do have to fucking get them out of the earth. goddamn it. followed the link and they said ...so many bizarre, self-contradictory things it made my head hurt. i just cant...

fancylinda said...

Yes, there are some dumb policies and some sellers breaking the rules. But overall, Etsy provides honest sellers like myself a way to earn a living working from home, setting my own hours, and having my wares instantly seen by millions of people all over the world without my having to spend money on advertising. It has been a real godsend to me over the past few years that I've had my supply shop, and continues to be so. I just like to focus on the positive, keep my head down and work hard to make my shop the best it can be. My buyers appreciate that, and come back to me time and time again. Karma will eventually get the dishonest ones.

sue said...

erm - I just don't get it at all. I followed the link too and even though I am not personally invested in the issue by the time I finished reading the admins posts my teeth were on edge! In the end you have had the courage of your convictions and made your views known - well done you. Shall forward a soapbox as soon as I find one!

Kimberly Rogers said...

That's just messed up all the way around. What are they thinking? I don't blame you for being upset.

Kimberly Rogers said...

Etsy just doesn't get the "penny for your thoughts" idea at all do they?

don't be a mesmire said...

i no longer sell on etsy. i was banned from the forums (for 1 month). i don't remember what comment i made. it was related to the circular relevancy though. either way, i think that admins of etsy getting paid to sit and read threads and ban people is pointless. wish etsy was like it used to be 2005-2010. miss those days. it took months of zero sales to finally throw the towel in after many great years. i don't know if there is such a thing as an etsy blacklist. but i think i'm on it.

Laurel Hill said...

thanks for speaking up! etsy can be so frustrating, and the fact that they spend time policing the forums for potential hurt feelings instead of working on the website's integrity is ridiculous.
and, thanks for the heads up about the crystal points, i've bought them on etsy in the past to use in jewelry. love the guy putting mustaches on the stones, brilliant.

Kimberly Rogers said...

It looks as though they are rethinking their policy on this with all of the voices that have spoken out. I hope that's good news.
https://www.etsy.com/teams/7722/discussions/discuss/12625903/page/9

Lela said...

Yes...what Kim said. Looks like someone knocked some sense into them.

http://www.etsy.com/teams/7722/discussions/discuss/12626753/page/25

It's a good thing that I stay out of the forums.

Anonymous said...

I just got "indefinitely banned" from the forums today, too! it was also for a post I made more than a week ago.

ugh, so stupid. I barely ever even post there because it's just an echo chamber anyway so it's not like I care, but when this type of thing happens it just reminds me that my BUSINESS depends on someone else's whim and arbitrary application of rules and it cheeses me off no end.

etsy admin are douchebags, period.

RaggedRobyn said...

I stopped even looking on etsy forums years ago they are so irritating, they just made me feel ignored and unheard. The raw stone thing is ridiculous and they will surely go back on that decision. The mustache thing is totally genius! 'Vintage' pisses me off as well and also the blatantly mass produced stuff as well. I don't get why they are spending money employing people to ban everyone from forums rather than hunting out the fraud shops.
I love etsy because of the friends I have made and the genuine artisan's and craftspeople I can be get inspired by. The forums are just politics to me and I cant even watch the news...call me ignorant but it just scrambles my brain and winds me up.