Monday, June 30, 2008

Meet Jared, er Jay, er... what?

In getting to know our beloved admin better, and thusly gain insight into madness, I delved into the "about us" section on Etsy.

I stumbled on Jay, whose real name is Jared but the page explains:

"His real name is Jared, but Etsy admins decided to rename him Jay, so as not to be confused with Jared Tarbell. No one else in the whole world calls him Jay. Just us. His mom hates it."
I have one of the most common names around, and have worked in office with others of the same name, and in one case the EXACT same given and surname that I have as well, and we all managed to find a way to identify each other without changing anything. But Etsy can't manage two Jared's?

What's that mean for Rob White if he ever moves to work in Brooklyn? Will they have to rename him "Buttercup" so as not to be stumped on payday?

The Day in Quotes Monday, June 30th


i think dawanda watches what etsy does and then learns from it

Signs of frustration
I have been an Etsy member since the end of 2006, and it's really only in the last two weeks I have been driven to start posting in the forums, which as well as being time consuming, is also very depressing. 'Badgering the management' was not something I expected would need to be included in my daily timetable. If this is still intended to be a business site (and that is something that seems to be up for debate) it really does need to be run in a businesslike manner

Sums it up
the etsy staff has lost control of the site, if they ever even had it

Have you been quoted on EB?

You asked for more overlays to show off that you've been quoted on EtsyBitch, we actually listen to our customers.

Here are some more avatar overlays!

qoute overlay overlay Photobucket
Photobucket Photobucket

From the Bitches Auxiliary

I've finally seen the light.

Etsy has said many times its goal is to help artists make a living at their craft. We all assumed they meant we could make a living by selling on Etsy. But they had a much more creative approach in mind. They would frustrate us, show us all the ways not to run an internet business, and waste our time and money. Finally, one by one, we will realize it is easier and cheaper to set up our own sites and promote just ourselves - and get more exposure and sales too. Then we all will be successful artists.

Creative strategy Etsy - but couldn't you have just made a tutorial on how to set up your own website instead of making us hate cupcakes in the process?

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Eclipse on a Roll

The whole thread is freakin' hilarious.

Psychic Line

Let's all predict the locking post that is sure to come. (since a shop was called out with a direct link)
Whoever comes closest wins...uh...something awesome.

My guess:

Please do not call out Etsy sellers on the forum. Please do not post links to adult websites. If you see any items you think don't belong on Etsy, please report it using the "flag this item" link or email flagged [!at]

Please treat other users with respect and understand that behind every avatar is a real person. (or sometimes a whole factory full of real people)

Please see the Do's and Dont's regarding mature items. Tasteful nudes of hot chicks are allowed on Etsy. Please understand that behind every Etsy user is a behind. We just don't want to see all of them them.

I once saw a painting tagged as "erotic nude".
It was of a fat naked guy with a small endowment and I felt misled because it was not in the LEAST bit erotic. Artistic and well painted, yes, but erotic? NO.
Please do not mistag your nudies.


non-erotic nudes are permitted on Etsy but they should not use the tag erotic. If a nude does not pass the boner test it is not erotic.

Dear Rokali

Go read, maybe post if you're inspired. Who knows, maybe this time it's not bullshit.

Rokali, I'm gonna make a quick post, since I know you are following a thread in bugs right now. I have actually been avoiding posting in the fora over the weekend, because I’ve honestly been wondering, what’s the use? But, since I know you are around, I’m taking a chance that you will care enough to respond here. I hope you will take a few moments to ponder the increasingly stormy climate in the fora – and the reasons behind it – and then perhaps address some of our concerns.

When you say
"Trust me, we're right there with you -- we want all this stuff to work flawlessly, and we do our absolute best to make sure of it." (quoted from bottom of this page )
are you referring only to the particular DNS/ISP issue, or are you referring to the Etsy experience as a whole? Because there are a lot of issues needing attention.

Have you taken a stroll through the rest of Bugs? Through Site Help? Through Ideas? Have you noted the many frustrations and requests for help, clarification, fixes? So much has gone wrong lately, added to the accumulation of many longstanding 'little' concerns (some are actually not little at all,) that users are at their wits end.

We have loved Etsy, been loyal and supportive, advertised and assisted in countless ways. In addition to promoting the overall site, here's a little tip-of-the-iceberg list to give you an idea of how devoted and committed Etsians are:

** flagging
** site help and bug-hunting
** newbie info (courtesy of sagittariusgallery, and a host of others)
** answers to FAQs
** contributions to the EtsyWiki ( )
** Etsy Mini gallery of shops ( )
** relevant search ( )
** front page treasuries ( , )
** 'hearts me' info-at-a-glance (Majaba - )
** site news (UEN - )
** site stats (EtsyTools, RIP)

To name just a *few* ways Etsy users - sellers *and* buyers - go the extra distance to benefit *everyone else* here.

As you can see, the community has a great way of pulling together and helping one another, but there is only so much we can accomplish. None of us are paid to do these things. We do them to fill gaps in Etsy services and features, because we NEED these things, and many more besides. How about a little Etsycorp love in return?

It appears as if Etsy has strayed far afield of its original mission statement, which is having a snowball negative effect. And it isn’t just the usual ‘vocal’ users who are dismayed – many members are coming out of the woodwork to voice their concerns. Etsy, for many, seems to be going to hell in a hand(made)basket. What do you say, Rokali, to those who are feeling demoralized and disenfranchised?

To quote a much-espoused sentiment:
"hope breaks your heart on this site."

Verybigjen's quote has struck a chord that still resonates.

The Day in Quotes Sunday, June 29th


This is exactly what happens when one starts drinking and hanging out in the forums.

Don't mess with the gerbil
I may be a pacifist, but I'm a REALLY aggressive one!

Cupcakes vs Fusspots
You'd better be careful.....some of us can spew fairy dust out of our arses and we know how to us it ;)

.....we just don't know how to spell the word *use*


So much for sharing anything with that neighbor. Do not let her borrow your tools, y' know?

Eb Comments of the Week

Anonymous old hippie bitch said...

C'mon, EB. That disaster from Vanessa deserves its own post!

What if "old" was replaced with "fat"?

Hi!!!:) This is your favorite cute admin, Cupcake Head! We have a
long layover in Hicksville, so we thought we'd feature our fatter
demographic. After all, you've got 'em there!

We're not looking for cute, skinny, hip crafters like us. We want
big-ass boomers who do traditional crafts like whittlin' and chewed
tobacco sculpting.

I'm dreaming of the 600 lb man who can't leave his house, but
still makes knit beer can hats.

Convo us, fatties!

forum rubbernecker said...
Good grief! I am really smart and even I won't try etching metal. With apologies to those without health insurance, I can see the forum posts now:

"Help, I got acid in my eye doing the Etsy metal etching tutorial they gave online, do you think it will stop eating away my eyeball eventually? I don't have health insurance and a doctor's visit will cost too much"


"Thank goodness I live in Canada where healthcare is free"

"Maybe see how much of your eyeball is left on Monday and then call a doctor"

"OMG, I am so sorry this happened"

"Once I got pickle juice in my eye and it hurt so bad, I know how you feel"

And so on .........

From the Bitches Auxiliary

Etsy Nursery Rhyme

EtsyEtsy locking threads
making sellers bang their heads.

EtsyEtsy use that mute!
Does anyone think that’s actually cute?

EtsyEtsy choose and pick
who to punish and who to kick.

EtsyEtsy punish, scold, and spank
and write those posts you think are “frank”.

EtsyEtsy it’s very clear
you do not hold sellers dear.

EtsyEtsy what else will you do
to make sellers think it’s turned into a zoo?

EtsyEtsy, hurt feelings and boo hoo hoo
if you mute lots of sellers, you’ll no longer be blue.

So think of the next time
you can fling the grime
And life will be cupcakes and pie
‘til the next time you try
to “engage” sellers with “We really like you, we do!”
and the sellers respond with “And up yours too!”

Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Day in Quotes Saturday, June 28th

In Search of a Clue

I would have thought you would be able to find "traditional crafts" with the search function

Time management
I'd much rather prefer as a buyer that Etsy take the time they'd spend creating how-to's videos, articles, cupcake parties, etc. and go through the million shops, items, resellers that have been flagged.

Recently I discovered the shocking amount of mass produced junk, and I'm not talking about supplies or vintage, being sold here under the notion it's handmade. When I can go to a reseller website and within minutes purchase 100 of the same item being sold on Etsy, I lose entire faith in this website.

I've drastically cut back my buying, preferring to stick with a few sellers I'm confident with and take my other purchasing elsewhere. I refuse to purchase something under the disguise of handmade and to later discover it's produced in a sweat shop. The aisles of Etsy, to me, are eerily beginning to resemble the aisles of Walmart. And we all know how much Etsians despise Walmart?

How about Etsy eat cupcakes while going through the flags? That would be a party!

For now I'm changing my old Etsy motto "Show me something I want (that isn't factory made)".

If Etsy was juried
Incestuous jury selection - If Etsy picked its jury like it picks the rest of its employees, they'd all be Brooklyn 20-something hipsters and the whole site would be packed with American Apparel tshirts, knit scarves and rock n roll belts, possibly of a certain amount of ironic hideousity. Artists with different "visions" might be excluded.

Sad but true
hope breaks your heart on this site.

A new award for Valor

VeryBigJen, you have fought a hard battle. Etsy Admin seem to have it out for you. Apparently it is okay to accuse someone of being an EB and going batshit crazy on them, but not to call the accuser a lame ass for using the word "buck" instead of fuck.

I thought calling out and bringing non-Etsy business into the forums was a no-no. Oh, and notice this: the e-mail was sent to VBJ on 06/28 at 330pm. It took Etsy a full 3 days to act on muting VeryBigJen. Yeah, consistency is a load of bullshit.

VeryBigJen, since you are not an actual EB, you can be an honorary one. As is anyone who posts for the greater good. But you took a direct attack for us, and that is admirable and valorous.

For that she was muted for 7 days.

Rob, sir, you are a douchebag for this action. VeryBigJen was attacked, provoked and yet you punish the innocent. What a reactionary response, and very immature to boot.

VeryBigJen, feel free to use any of our valor awards in your banner.

Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades

That is something a teacher of mine used to say, and it immediately came to mind when it was pointed out that Vanessa's tragic attempt at reaching out was closed by MaryMary only to be restated - in a potentially insulting way.

who specialize in traditional artisan crafting and/or might be in an older age bracket. We'll leave it to you to decide what older age bracket means since many of us are all only as old as we feel. With that it mind, we'd still love to hear from anyone in the area that might be interested.

Now, I have to give them credit...they're trying! They've obviously been listening and realize that the aesthetic they've been pushing is too narrow and just not cutting it. They also changed the group they were looking for, notice the broader inclusion in MaryMary's OP versus Vanessa's.

However, admin have multiple tools at their exposure that would bypass the need of such posts, nevermind referring to the "older age bracket." But these tools we've been complaining about not working or being relevant aren't even being used by admin!!

Now THAT tells you something.

By the way, noone has yet posted in MaryMary's thread...let's not. Let's make admin use their own faulty tools so they get a taste of our daily life and maybe some ideas on making them better.

From the Bitches Auxiliary

I'm so glad we're going to have arts and crafts classes at etsy, instead of them policing the site to see that it doesn't turn into ebay. I can't believe all the people that use other peoples'copyrighted images to make a buck.

366 of these -§ion_id=5345185

I went to the actual wallet category and get cell phone charms and key chains. And you know what? The damn NOT search isn't working - so I can't exclude the two links above or the other garbage. So I attempted to find a fun little wallet for 30 minutes. I'm so frustrated I'm just going to go buy one at Target today.

But hey, at least we get arts and crafts, where Etsy will teach other people how to etch metal. What's more fun than learning how to play with acid and hazardous materials over the internets? I wonder if they will be explaining the creation of free copper ions and the needs to dispose of the mordant as hazardous waste? With the level of intelligence so often shown in forums I wonder how many people will end up hurt? Maybe they can teach cold process soap next, so everyone that posts to a dormant thread and feels the need to say "OMG I killed another thread!" 1 minute later can go play with lye.

/rant off

Seriously frustrated,

Bitch wannabe.

ps - thanks for protecting my identity. I love the blog.

Friday, June 27, 2008

This is Why Supervisors Exist

From the Bitches Auxiliary:

Once again, Etsy has let loose with a forum post directed to old fogies, old bats, old ladies, hags, little old ladies — otherwise pigeonholed as Etsy to be "traditional crafters" and people who make, well, products worthy to be sold to the public online! You know, like, ARTISANS.

Anyone at Etsy heard of supervision and management? How about Public Relations? How about proofing an extremely long and insulting Admin forum post BEFORE it gets posted? How about running it by the "Does this reflect the Etsy Image?" manager?

Didn't Etsy learn its lesson several months ago when the furor resulted in a blast in the Consumerist? Or is it a terminally short attention span?

If you didn't get your old hag dander up with the original post, you have to read the "apology" with additional snide remarks by — well, the same Admin group that were exposed the last time!

Another fine example of lack of thought, lack of integrity, and the widening gap between Etsy the company and Etsy the Sellers.

Pie in the face (or faces) does not do this one justice.

The Day in Quotes

There are so many quotes out in Etsyland that we figured grouping them together might provide a better reading experience. Some of these below are actually backlogged from a few days ago. So please keep in mind that they are not necessarily from today.

In addition, since this has been brought up in comments, keep in mind that the general focus on quotes is to:
- highlight something funny
- summarize current problems at Etsy
- something idiotic that Admin has done yet again
- show that we were all young and excited about Etsy once long ago
- highlight an interesting trainwreck
- and highlight a moment.

We're not trying to use any quotes to encourage attacks or add fodder to "do not buy" lists. Instead, proper use of the Day in Quotes plus
should provide anyone with a nice daily fix of Drama from Etsy.

mmmmmmmmmmmmmm, smells good

"This thread proves what I have seen claimed - that threads are only locked when they complain about Admin"

Let's test that theory.

Admin smells like chicken fat

Doing their job
I've been thinking about this the last couple of days, and here's what
I've realized:

Admin rely on sellers to advertise Etsy for them and bring buyers (and more often than not, new sellers) to the site.

Admin rely on sellers to flag questionable shop items or sellers for them.

Admin rely on sellers to flag offensive forum posts/threads for them.

Admin rely on sellers to flag questionable Alchemy requests for them.

Admin rely on sellers to search for critical site info (bugs, new tools) themselves through vast forum threads.

Admin rely on sellers to answer numerous and varying site "Help" questions on the forums, rarely commenting on the threads themselves to give more definate answers in cases, for example, involving Etsy policy and procedures.

I don't mind helping out other sellers, I've done it many times in the forums, and will continue to do so relying on my own experience on the site, but surely Etsy can take a more proactive approach to guiding their sellers and policing the site themselves as this is their bread-and-butter?

Basic Instinct
Stella, I think the point being missed is that it's not *just* the slowness or *new* features.

It's the BASICS that are missing & are sorely needed. And have been needed ... for a LONG time.

1. the inability for a shop to search their sold listings
2. being unable to edit expired listings before renewing
3. being unable to delete expired or inactive listings
4. receipts that don't have the multiple shipping charges tallied
5. (the list is long. I'll stop now.)

These aren't fancy, revolutionary concepts or ideas. These are the most rudimentary needs for a seller on this site.

Perhaps not fun, flashy or exciting to program, but desperately needed.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

From the Bitches Auxiliary

It occurred to me today after reading the latest Etsy Finds or some other promotional piece that Etsy is absolutely a juried site.

- To be successful here you have to be promoted from within and by Etsy.

- To be promoted here you have to be juried in, a friend of or a relative of or in some kind of relationship with admin OR you have to be a cheerleader and in no way controversial or negative OR you have to be bringing in a lot of revenue for Etsy (eg. resellers and other shops which have been flagged repeatedly and somehow are still there).

-Then you are featured as a seller on the front page, in Etsy Finds, in the Gift Guides, in media releases ... and so on, thus successful and you can give up your day job.

Whoever says Etsy does not jury is deluded IMO or maybe they just call it by its proper name - favouritism. Not only that, Etsy has refined this jury technique to the point where, just like everything else Etsy does, they eventually reveal their real intentions.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Quotable Quotes: From EB Comments

"Etsy: Your place for touchy feely goodness with no business stuff to make you feel bad!"

Quotable Quotes: Summer Camp!

Time for arts & crafts!

" It's summertime. Time for camp and crafts.

Tech stuff is School & Difficult & Un-fun. Crafts & glue & glitter & singing around campfires & field trips are fun.

I swear I feel like I'm at Girl Scout Camp sometimes in this place. Etsy, please tend to business. It's really getting quite foolish in here."

Quotable Quotes: From EB comments

"I bought the Etsy seller experience and all I got was this stupid bill for relisting!"

From the Bitches Auxiliary

Forum Quote:

"Hey! Wouldn't it be nice if everyone who blogs would put a notice up in their blogs about these job openings? Then we could ALL help ourselves by helping etsy!!"

Bitches Auxiliary Response:
If this isn't objectionable, then I need Prozac

Am I just too bitter to get it? Seriously? I'm not putting an ad on my blog for their open job positions unless they PAY for that ad. I sure as heck won't be recommending people apply for positions there. And for pete's sake, why is this our job?

Oh wait, I know---now that my vintage store has screeched to a stop, I have time on my hands to PR and HR. Nevermind, clearly I should be happy for my new focus in life. Heh.

Please, tell me this is sarcasm and I'm too dense to get it!

Quotable Quotes: Vegas Baby!

Feel like gambling?

"If I was a seller on this site I am afraid I would feel like I was on
a slot machine, pumping in my 20 cents and hoping for the jackpot."

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Quotable Quotes: What Kind of Site is Etsy?

Food for thought:

""I think people are despairing a bit because you get a very distinct feeling that Etsy doesn't need any of us, and it shows, and as the big sellers migrate elsewhere, Etsy might find itself with a lot of sellers but very little buyers, and there goes the revenue from sales."

This bears repeating. I hope the Etsy admins - and the new COO in particular - is paying attention to comments such as these.

And it wouldn't hurt for them to note why you, and others, are looking to go solo. You just listed some of the most fundamental selling tools that Etsy, after three years as a 'selling venue' still. does. not. provide.

If Etsy truly wants to be competitive, as well as live up to their mission mantra, they need to start listening to, and acting on, the feedback from their clients."

Quotable Quotes - Getting Screwed

In the comments of one of our threads, Old Hippie Bitch has it so right!

Even ebay takes you out before they screw you. Etsy just wants you to wait up all night for their booty call, which may or may not come.

Etsy's 3, She's been in a month...

Rome is burning, Maria. Maybe it's time to address the citizens? Or do we need to devise a evacuation plan on our own?

Quotable Quotes: Cost of Living

"The completely random, unprovoked stabbings wouldn't be so bad if they would just drive down rent prices."

What the Fuck Is Going On Here?

We’ve seen not one, not two, but THREE different forum threads within the space of 24 hours asking what the hell Etsy thinks it is. Sellers are fed up and feeling screwed.

It’s getting pretty old hearing admins say, “Thanks so much for your input and terrific suggestions. We’ll make note of your ideas and will continue to discuss (read: laugh at, then ignore) them and we’ll get to work on making the site a great place to sell your handmade goodness.” Look at
DanielleXO’s adorable comments in one thread – she’ll pass our comments along and will get to work on scheduling a whole bunch of things we’ve been asking for for the past three years. Thanks for your feedback, Danielle!

All this makes me think that pretty much everything Rokali says is bullshit. His forum thread and
Storque article on “Focusing Our Priorities” says “we’ll use your input to prioritize development.” Clearly I missed all the input asking Etsy to prioritize fluff and to give us more “sharing and caring,” more play time for EtsyLabs staff, and more tutorials on how to half-learn a craft and make crap you can then list and relist for months on Etsy.

In January, Rob read us a nice bedtime story and then proceeded to give us
his grand vision for spending the $27 million that Etsy sucked up. Let’s see – what did he promise? Improvements to checkout, a better search function, an effort to “grow and improve” Etsy service “from customer support to shopping tools.” And then he capped it off by saying, “As Etsy grows, the responsibilities to our sellers grow.”

Did I miss something? Was there a flood of requests for more fun in the Labs from Etsy users? Doesn’t it sound like Rob keeps promising BUSINESS-BASED improvements? WTF is going on in Brooklyn?

To the cheerleaders who think the tutorials sound fun, and who don’t understand why people are worried the classes will detract from their business – you’ve missed the fucking point. And apparently, so has Etsy. We want SALES tools before fluff. The cute stuff won’t placate us while we wait for something we can actually use. If Etsy wants to be, or wants to teach users how to make a Swimmy from pipe cleaners and toilet paper rolls, that’s great. But don’t claim to be a place to “help people make a living making things” if that’s not what you are. I don’t pay fees so I can spend an hour watching Anda fuse plastic bags.

It appears that we need tutorials on how to choose an ecommerce platform for your independent website, how to market your own shop, and how to write a business plan that doesn’t include an Etsy shop. Perhaps the Bitches and friends will get to work on those, so we can give you something useful. In the mean time, don’t bother saving me a seat for
Cupcake Night.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Vintage and Supply sellers to get reacharound

Etsy sent a letter to members (twice in a week? OMG!) and posted the requisite Storque article on Etsy giving free 4 month extensions on a V&S listings.

If you have your tagging right. If the moon is in Leo. If you said your nighttime prayers and are wearing clean knickers.

They invite you to comment in a forum thread (any bets on how long it takes to spiral and require a second, third, and fourth due to locks?) as they have locked the Storque article.

Don't get me wrong, free extensions for V&S is a a pretty huge monetary concession for pulling a bait and switch considering most of Etsy's biggest sellers, and bill payers, are V&S folks. But I don't recall a huge outcry for Etsy to do this. Sure some suggested getting free extentions, but most of what I saw after they made this announcement (and after the change of search defaults ) was to have NO default thereby making the searcher pick what they wanted to look for being aware then that there was more than handmade on Etsy.

I see both sides on this. I see the need to be impartial when you have three distinct kinds of sellers, but I also see the need for cohesion of some sort when your tagline is "your place to buy & sell all things handmade" which is what I think Etsy was trying to do. Sometimes I do feel for them. They had a cry for vintage, they added it. They had a cry for supplies, they added it. They start to get complaints about them being the mass of Etsy's sales and are forced to cater to the handmade crowd as well. Sometimes they can't win for losing and for that I sometimes feel sorry for them.

If the moon is in Leo.

Stop the hatin'!

One thing that really gets my panties in a twist are people who feel it's necessary to bash other Etsy sellers, or buyers, here on our blog. Now this is just me talking about one of my pet peeves, but it is our policy on this blog that we focus on Etsy the business and the people who run it. If you need a refresher, read our mission statement on the sidebar!

Now, for all of you who can not turn off your Etsy forum habits - KNOCK IT THE FUCK OFF!

We do not and will not tolerate the Etsian versus Etsian carnage that is so frequent among its members elsewhere. If we are so busy hounding each other's merchandise, business practices, or opinions, we won't have the time or energy to fight for what we deserve as customers of Etsy. This should be our focus! Not tearing each other apart.

It doesn't matter what your craft or art is, if you're a vintage or supplies seller, or if you are or aren't a pain in the ass know-it-all with a vendetta. We are Etsy's customers and have a common goal. To put the site back on track. The community they've built has resulted in the need to say such things, but that is beyond our abilities to repair, not without each and every one of us stepping aside and saying 'ya know what, there are bigger fish to fry!'

So take off your boxing gloves, turn the other cheek, and stop insulting each other. Get off your high and mighty soap boxes and turn the energy towards Etsy and your business.

There are other outlets for you to let out your angst about your experiences with other people, but this is not one of them. This blog is about Etsy - the business and the management.

We know people rub you the wrong way. We understand the frustration with some people. Believe me, we all have those we steer clear from. But if you're going to say Etsy shouldn't have public favorites or a blacklist then neither should we or you.

If you agree with us, great. If you don't, then whatever. You piss us off, we don't care which category you fit in above, we'll tell you to fuck off. We're bitches like that. Get over it!

*btw, this is my opinion.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Quotable Quotes: Fussy Analysis

I'm starting to think that there are aliens among us:

"Fusspots fuss. If they keep on, they will become a Fuss. Nothing but Fuss! Misery does love company, Misery likes to evangelize, but I'm not buying what Misery is selling. I like being happy. I like my attitude of gratitude! Yay!"

Don't talk business strategy, you might hurt someone's feeeeeeeelings

The big flat foot of Etsy admin stomped hard on a thread in business the other day, stifling a perfectly valid discussion about streamlining your supplies purchases.

stellaloella says:
Please be considerate of your fellow community members when posting ideas like this in the Forums. What may be beneficial to some could have a negative impact on others. It's important to balance these ideas to make sure that no one (or no group) is sidelined in the process.

What she really means is that if you whine, cry and snivel enough that your feelings are hurt by other people thinking of their bottom line, you can get a legitimate talk about business strategy shut down.

Grow the fuck up. Business is business and it ain't for the thin-skinned. No matter what delusions Etsy harbours about making things "beneficial" for all sides, people are going to do what's best for their own business. They're going to trim excess spending where they see it, and if that terrifies you so much you feel you have squash a discussion other folks are rightfully entitled to have, then maybe you'd better re-evaluate if you're cut out to run a business.

Shame on you, Etsy, for supporting that childish mentality. You made a Business board for people to talk about Business topics. Not all aspects of business are fuzzy-wuzzy kittens drooling rainbows. Stop serving the self-interests of one group by shutting down relevant and meaningful strategy talk. You actually might learn a thing or two yourself.

Quotable Quotes: Irony

Sweet Irony:

"Our process is democratic, and we're going to revise our rules based on everyone's feedback. Indeed the seed for the Constitution itself was planted by people's requests here in the forums."

From the Bitches Auxiliary: Checklist

Dear Etsy,

Oh howdie and good morning, hope you have your mocha java 2-shots lattes in hand because the is today's advice for YOU.

When you encounter an unhappy sellers on Etsy, you must:
  • Ignore their posts and pleas for help, including any and all emails - delete, delete, lock.

  • You KNOW those Bitches are going to write about you anyway, and they are just poopy faces to be ignored too.

  • Go back to gathering intelligence on every one of those Bitches Stores (real or imaginary) and get ready to delete, delete, lock, red brick wall, and send a really threatening series of emails personally attacking that seller. Maybe they'll just go away.

  • Go the extra mile. Make sure you've scoured the net for suspicious blogs, comments on OTHER blogs and just keep piling up that evidence. You don't need much to make your case to start harassing that seller until kingdom comes, but, it helps to have a list of demands from that seller that have nothing to do with the law, freedom of speech, or doing business in a businesslike manner.

  • Always remember you're Etsy, and you can do anything or say anything you want because you have proven that you can be arrogant, egocentric, narcisstic, and flout the law because you feel like it.

  • Take a big breath, pull out those reams of evidence, and start writing. Remember, your CEO wants 30 really, really nasty emails to sellers on his desk by 1 PM (when he gets into the office) to be ready to go out at 11 PM so those sellers have a real Etsy-mocha-java-2-shot (literally) latte in their hands when they open their email accounts.

Go on, get to it! Time's a wasting and we have a ping-pong tournament at 2 and another new employee party and barbecue on the roof at 3.

Bring your favorite Swimmies because we're having a Design Contest at 7 PM and the loyal Etsy employee with the most-loved and adored Swimmy gets a $3,500 cash bonus added to their weekly paycheck!!!!!

Your Leader xoxo

Quotable Quotes: Metaphorically Speaking

Just funny:

"The elderberry dye faded faster than a vampire when confronted with what passes for sunlight here."

For the record: poll results

Why Did RobKali buy the Esty Admin protest bead? The Final results!

a) a self-deprecating sense of humour
48 (27%)
b) insecure pettiness
65 (36%)
c) he hasn't had a date in a while
15 (8%)
d) Etsy Labs wants a new idol for the sacrificial altar
20 (11%)
e) Chris had a temper tantrum and flushed his matchbox cars down the toilet and needed something new to play with
9 (5%)
f) ooh, it's pretty
20 (11%)

Discrepancy in Tagging Vintage

Based on an Auxiliary post, people were confused as to whether the tag 'commercial' is necessary for vintage items. Especially since the help above the tags when listing an item says the tag is needed for supplies, but there's no longer a mention of vintage.

Even more confusing is that the little popup to choose commercial as the second tag no longer comes up. Well, I took a look at the Dos and Don'ts for clarification. Here's what the tagging help guide said:

Vintage (not handmade by you, 20 years or older): Vintage Category only. Tag with commercial.
So yes, a vintage item without a tag "commercial" is mistagged!

Even better yet, this is what the Storque article announcing the recent category changes says:

Make sure your listings comply with Etsy’s policies. In short, any item not handmade by you (or a member of your collective if you qualify as one) must be tagged with the word commercial. Commercial Supplies may only be listed in the Supplies category, and must have commercial as one of the tags. Unaltered vintage items must be at least 20 years old, may only be listed in the Vintage category, and must have the tag commercial. Sellers who refuse to follow these rules may be penalized.
You hear that...PENALIZED! Yet they were FEATURED!!!!

Etsy, get your head out of your ass!!!!!!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

From the Bitches Auxiliary: Etsy Finds

I am so sick of Etsy Finds being a mish mash of mass produced & mis-tagged items.

Todays vintage finds are ALL mistagged except for 1!!

Per Etsy, anything vintage must have first tag VINTAGE, second tag COMMERCIAL ........ and only 1 of the featured items has COMMERCIAL as the second tag.

If you're going to make arbitrary rules, at least enforce them, so those of us who do follow them don't feel like such saps. And if you're not going to enforce them, then at least don't FEATURE them.

Perhaps doing a post on this every day hypocrisy, might open their eyes, that admin should read the D&D's too.

Quotable Quotes: No Shit Sherlock

Please Etsy, get a clue.

Storque article: "Dear Sellers,

Did you realize that the way you communicate with your customers can actually promote repeat business?"

Seller Comment: Um, is this a joke? You actually have the balls to lecture sellers about communication skills when Etsy expects its users to get critical information by digging through the forums and sifting the Storque guano? Not to mention all the crap that's been going down in the forums this week? This is why I'm moving to my own site, I don't have the time or the patience to deal with Etsy's hypocrisy anymore."

mmmm The Irony

From a Storque How-To:

When you encounter an unhappy customer, chances are they are going to spread the word about their shopping experience to their friends and family. Similarly, if you can manage to appease your customer and take an extra step to assure they are satisfied with their experience, you can bet they will be just as vocal about what a wonderful shop you are to everyone they know. So take that deep breath, and see if you can extend a solution to the problem.

From the Bitches Auxiliary: Service with a Smile

Storque Featured Article:

Service Tips for Sellers: Promoting Repeat Business

Oh, Etsy, I could not resist a re-write:

Service Tips for Etsy: Treating Your Sellers like the Professional
Businesses That They Are


Service Tips for Etsy: How to talk to sellers like they're adults and
please stop insulting them with your cutesy wootsey LOVE YA! notes and
general nastiness.


Service Tips for Etsy: You Don't Really Expect Stores Here to Be
Professional When you Have No Idea What That Means


Service Tips for Etsy: You Sure Can Dish It Out When You Have A
Tantrum, But You Sure Can't Take The Truth About How You Treat Your
Own Sellers Like Crap

Quotable Quotes: Suggestion Box

Just a recommendation:

"E says: If the Dos and Donts are only suggestions, does that mean I can start reselling some pretty scarves I bought in Morocco last year, and also start listing my shoes from last season that I don't wear anymore?

M says: If you did start selling those, you'd probably end up in a front page treasury....."

Friday, June 20, 2008

Quotable Quotes: Communication Breakdown

Below is a brilliant representation of the "joys" of communication with Etsy Admin.

"Members: We non-US sellers would really appreciated it being noted that the site is in USD. Thank you.

Etsy: Sure, we'll get right onto that.

Members: Umm, it's been a few months now, still no USD. Any update?

Etsy: Sure, we'll get right onto that.

Members: It's like a year now and still no USD. Do you realise that quite a few countries deal in Dollars, so it is confusing for our buyers and some sellers are losing money as a result. There are also legal implications.

Etsy: Sure, we'll get right onto that.


Etsy: It's actually really really tricky and our engineers already have awesome projects in the works, so we can't help at this time.

: Are you for real? You string us along for like 18 months, tell us it's important to you and that it will be done. Now it's too hard??? WTF?

Etsy: *quickly slaps together a tiny USD that appears in only one place*
Well looky what you peeps got! USD before your money! Please, praise us. Send dried ice, now!

Is it any wonder people are tearing their hair out?"

From the Bitches Auxiliary: Hey Etsy – Your Roots are Showing

It's hard to take an objective look at Etsy and their practices when you are personally linked to whether or not this whole site – this whole dream – succeeds or fails. There are very few of us that were not turned on by the prospect of actually making a living selling our handicrafts (and yes, vintage & supplies, I didn't forget you) in an online marketplace that sounded at the beginning to be worlds away from the smoking wreckage that eBay had turned into. People flocked to Etsy by the droves to take their shot at The Dream too.

And what a dream it was! A marketplace that didn't have the stink of those "other places", a community that actually helped one another and had discussions that didn't involve identifying vaginal cheese, doling out legal advice from anyone but someone versed in law, or public displays of attention whoring. Maybe I'm seeing the past through rose-tinted glasses, but bear with me here.

It was so wonderful that people began to spread the word! Etsy refuses to have a "conventional" advertising strategy? No problem, we'll spread the gospel and mountains of business cards, samples and brochures ourselves! It's that damned magical! So hip! So Indie! Few knew what the hell "indie" was, but that was ok too! Word of Etsy's deeds flew across the country, across the globe and back, and we had ourselves…and Etsy…to thank for it. The site grew by leaps and bounds. The sellers lagged a little behind, but we were so drunk on The Dream that it didn't matter. Didn't we do a marvelous job? Grassroots, baby. It makes the indie world go round.

It's amazing what a mere couple of years can do to a site. Now a person can't ask a simple question and reasonably expect a civil answer. Contacting someone who should know how to answer those questions is like seeking an audience with the Pope, if they even get that far. Many are met with crashing silence. Policies are changed at the drop of the hat, and an administrator can drop that hat themselves with no discernable repercussions. Posting them in any kind of consistent manner is unheard of, and clarification? What clarification? If you want waffling, coin-toss verdicts, and knee-jerk reactions, you're in luck. Otherwise, you're gonna be there awhile. You'll find out what's going on when you get an email informing you that you've broken a rule somewhere. Which incidentally, you have to drag out of them, which takes hours upon hours if not days and weeks – meanwhile your store is at risk, and you're still flailing around for a clue.

Sellers and buyers can't even get the basic level of service that is part and parcel to any venue. Seamless payment? Nope. Accurate view counts? Afraid not. Customer service? Is that laughing I hear in the background? Don't say a word against it, you grumpy haters!

Is it any wonder that people are so very disillusioned with Etsy now? With the dismal outlook ahead of us, few coherent answers, and those who dare question the powers that be for fear of banishment or losing their stores altogether, who wouldn't be?

But then it occurred to me last night, while watching another series of trainwrecks crash on the forums in front of me. That whole concept of grassroots word of mouth has now come home to roost. Blogs like Etsy Bitch are becoming more and more popular and sprout up overnight like mushrooms. The Consumerist declared that the Emperor had no clothes months ago. Disgruntled, simply confused and frustrated people are venting in more and more places, and the word's spreading. Spreading like wildfire.

See, that grassroots thing works both ways. And Etsy is about to find out just how powerful it can be. I think I'm going to sit back and enjoy the show.

I do believe in Swimmy! I do! I do!

'Cmon everyone, clapping your hands and believing really REALLY hard saved Tinkerbell, didn't it? Maybe if we ALL clap our hands and believe in Swimmy, he'll be buoyed up by our sparkling power of positive thinking! If we all work together and hold our hands over our ears and sing "Kum By Ya" really loudly, unicorns and ponycars will frolic in the fields while bunnies ejaculate rainbows! Hooray!

HeyMichelle says:
Thanks for your lovely post. I know it inspires all of us to keep a positive attitude even in the midst of frustration. I know I think work gets done better and faster when we keep positive. Even though we all sometimes feel small and helpless when it comes to this place we all love so much, it's important to remember that with every word we type and every item we list, we are building Etsy. Thank you for your wonderful attitude and cheerfulness, I will let these words inspire all the work I do today...


Quotable Quotes: C.o.m.m.u.n.i.c.a.t.i.o.n.

Are you ashamed yet Etsy?

"Imagine if my customers (or potential customers) contacted me asking me a question and I didn't respond to them. What kind of an impression would they have of me?

1. They're not important to me
2. I have no intentions of doing/making what they want
3. They're annoying me
4. I don't want their business
5. I don't care about my own business

Now imagine if a customer bought from me and contacted me upon receipt of their package and wrote "The listing said this soap was blue but the soap I got is pink" and I convo'd them back and said "The soap is blue" and linked them to the listing in my shop showing a blue soap. And they wrote back and said, "yeah, i see that the soap in the listing is blue. What I'm telling you is MY SOAP IS PINK." To which I responded with another link to the blue soap listed in the shop.

What does THIS say about me?

1. I'm not listening to you
2. You're stupid, stupid--look at the picture, the soap is BLUE!
3. I don't really care about you now that you've paid me
4. It's not me, it's you. Really, it's YOU. Now stop pestering me
5. I don't have the time to actually ADDRESS your issue, so I'll just keep linking you back to the pretty little picture of the blue soap. See? It's blue. Got it?

What if a seller bought from me and contacted me a week later and said "Where's my order?" And I replied "I'm working on it". A few days later--"where's my order?" "I'm
working on it." And so on and so on.

Once again, I'm showing my customers that they're not important to me, I don't value them, and that maybe I'm not even WORKING on their order. "Oh yeah, I'll get to your order right after I finish this article on "Cool Stuff for Curly Haired People" for my blog and then make a video of myself showing my fly dance moves."

You can't provide good customer service to your customers if THEY ARE NOT YOUR PRIORITY.

I bend over backwards for my customers. I don't think it's inappropriate for me to expect the same from the venue on which I sell (and pay money to)."

I'll give him points for having balls

THIS JUST IN: Seems the Etsy Admin protest bead we linked earlier (seen to the left) that was up for auction has been won by "robkali" - anyone wish to venture a guess as to who that is? With 59 feedback something tells me it's none other than the Etsy CEO himself as I can't see anyone would playing a duplicitous game that long just to buy this.

I've heard some incredible reports of people sending work to Etsy and it coming back vandalized and destroyed. I dearly hope it's not the case with this because this fellow deserves a place of honor not under some wanker's boot.

If you didn't take the link over to read the description or see the pictures before, do it now, it's a fucking work of genius. It also might be the last time he's seen in one piece. It was made by one of the screwed over beadmakers whose work was being claimed by the now deleted seller with the Etsy-deleted sold pages.

If it was me I would refuse the sale and refund his money and tell him to sod off. But that's me. I'm a total bitch as if you didn't you know.

Happy Birthday Etsy!

We know it wasn’t the best third birthday, your view counter surprise ending up with a head rolling incident and all. But we think things can get better. Now that you’ve had your cake and ate it too (we know you did even if you didn’t say you did) it’s time to put on your grown up pants and get to work. Now, now, stop your whining. You have customers to serve!

Rokali, put down that fish! It’s not natural for a grown man to love an aquatic creature so fiercely unless he’s Tom Hanks and the fish grows legs. It’s time you sat down and wrote out a business plan young man. Three years is a long time for a company to flail around. And you have lots of people and their families depending on what you’ve sold them. No, no! Nothing about being a little fish! You have 27 million dollars. You’re the big fish now. Here’s a pencil…no, no crayon. I don’t care if that’s ‘handmade’, it’s sloppy. We'll talk about the booth you built in the backyard, later.

Community Team, take off your party hats, and stop telling us you love us; you’re not our friends. We have no illusion about that. But what we do need you to do is stop helping EtsyLabs pick up their toys and learn your phone number. You already have your address down, but customers are going to need to talk to you quickly sometimes. Also, some of you are going to have to start staying up past your bed time. You have customers across the world who need you too. And weekends. Now dears, stop whining, do you think any of us want to work weekends either? And no, you don’t get holidays off, but you can alternate. You and customer service, what, there’s no customer service team? Well then looks like you need to make more friends.

Engineers, work is no place to be playing games. It’s where you work, that’s why it’s called, well, work. Put down the video game controller. You can have it back when you’ve finished your work! Stop fighting with it! Now, when you’re fixing something, you should tell the customer how it’s going. And when something is new, and you aren’t sure how well it’ll work, it’s called ‘beta’. Come on, dears, can you say 'beta'? I knew you could! Except for little Dorkie there; vocabulary and social interaction classes may be necessary for you, you little rascal. But I’ll let you get back to work for now. Hey! Hey! I said no video games!

We know you’re growing up and having friends is fun, but this is not a social networking site. It’s a business. It’s an e-commerce site. So buck up and face the real world. Or no more birthday cake for you!

Happy Birthday, we hope you get your act together and make it to 4.


the Bitches xoxo

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Quotable Quotes: Cupcakes are the new Koolaid

How do I keep from feeling the wrath of Etsy Admin?

"just be sweet and kind all the time. Just imagine you're a giant cupcake and post accordingly."

Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww, that's cute!

Quotable Quotes: How to Lock a Thread

MaryMary style:

"Please remember to be respectful to the big hairy Admin asses. I believe this is addressed somewhere in our TOU, Dos & Don'ts or someplace in the Storque. I think. Maybe. Probably. We're working on that. Thanks for your input; I'm making a list and will pass along your communication concerns at the the next staff meeting, which is in August, but we can't commit to that because, you know, schedules are tricky things and priorities change. But I'm definitely probably maybe going to put in on my list."

Old Feedback to Bite the Dust

Yep, you heard me. On July 1 feedback that has not been left and is older than 90 days will expire. If you didn’t know this you’re not alone. Luckily some sensible forum watcher saw this thread which references a Storque article.

Another feedback change we'll be making soon: the ability to leave feedback will expire 90 days after the transaction date. That change will go into effect on July 1, 2008, so get your backlog of waiting feedbacks cleaned up before then.

The article is actually about the kiss and makeup feature and then throws that blurb in at the end. However, this blurb is no longer in the Storque article. So is it happening? Who the hell knows. But you should probably clear out that feedback while you can!

My thoughts on this – fucking admin never tell us anything. This type of thing deserves a notification to ALL sellers. Not just those who read every sentence of every article on their blog. And this information should be accessible to everyone, not just forum goers.

Edit Jun 19 4:00 PM EDT by Righteous: Well it seems that there is a Storque article where this is mentioned. It was mentioned among many other changes in the Dos and Don'ts and TOU. However, not every member received the email that should have been received by everyone. Relying on forum threads and the Etsy blog for information is a ridiculous thing to do. Also, the Storque article isn't found when searching for 'feedback', as I assume any reasonable person would do when looking for that information. But, hey, that's just me.

Quotable Quotes: Haves and Have Nots

Not directly related to Etsy, but good food for thought:

"the silver lining is always easier to see from an ivory tower"

(Kinky originally pulled this one for you guys, but I messed up behind the scenes and redo it. My apologies - Righteous)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

You asked for it

Some overlays for you regular avatar. These are transparent gifs so easy to use over your current avatar.
1: Open avatar in graphics application of choice, paste on the overlay. Save.
2: Upload the new avatar.
2: Enjoy your newly envious status in the Etsy Sellers Resistance Front.

Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket
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Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

Awards for the Valorous

Oh, how the battle lines have been drawn! Its time to pull a chair up and award the following people with valor awards.

Let us not forget the battles they fought, some won and some lost, but all fought valiantly. Their battle armor no doubt has damage, but they still move forward in hopes of making Etsy a better place for all.

Jessica, the seller who came forward admitting her mistake. You are alright in our book for coming clean.

quirke, for making sure that the lampwork glass artists were heard. That was a most excellent battle.

antb, for smacking down an overly smug know-it-all in the forums. It was brilliant.

Windysdesigns, for always telling it like it is and making sure that Admin is held accountable. We have heard that she has been muted indefinitely. *plays butt trumpet TAPS*

SherryTruitt, GreenMamba and SocoCreative, for bringing the glaringly apparent flaws in the current methods of communication from Etsy staff and that sellers pay for this service. That, and lighting a fire under their butts over the views issue.

Here are your latest recipients of valor awards. Ladies and gents, wear it loud, wear it proud, but never forget!

Photobucket or this overlay for your current avatar Photobucket

Breaking News: View Tallies Spayed, um "Fixed"

Per the wonderful Revolving Dork, the Etsy engineers are "delighted" that the view tallies are fixed. He goes on to note that "We've tested this system thoroughly, but there is always a chance that an issue may arise once we have it running on the live site. If there is an issue, we'll be sure to alert you through the Storque and the Etsy News Alerts email list."

Uh huh, sure. Just like this past time right?

Response in the Forums has been tremendous. RD has spent more than an hour imitating Whack-a-mole with all of the redundant threads popping up stating the obvious.

It's even spilled over to Etc where the most important discovery has been that you can actually type "FUCK" in a thread title and not be censored.

Quotable Quotes: Brushwork

The Great Mineral Make-Up Brush Countdown has started:

"We appreciate you sharing your thoughts on makeup brushes and how they should or shouldn't be listed. We're taking this opportunity to review this matter and the restrictions set for these items. Should we have further questions that haven't been addressed in the connected threads, we'll bring them to you to get community input before making a decision. Thank you again for your patience."

I'm taking bets on how long before mineral makeup sellers and buyers get their answer, post them in comments.

Quotable Quotes: Help Etsy Communicate

In case you missed this thread , asking about the pattern of ideas introduced by admin and left to languish out there in the desert:

To put things in perspective, here are a number (by no means all) of threads begun by admin for the purposes of information gathering or constructive brainstorming.“Help us with Vacation Mode for your shop” – 2-19-06
“Seller Stats: Suggestions?” –8-24-07
“Discussion - better way to rectify feedback than Kiss and Make Up?” – 3-10-2008
“Official Alchemy Thread: Please Discuss Alchemy Here” – (this is a post-Alchemy thread, and I confess I am unsure of whether there have been changes to the new Alchemy resulting from it) –3-13-08
“Tell us about your ideal vacation mode” – 4-07-08
“View counts public or private?” – 5-05-08
“Feedback and non-paying buyers.” – 5-19-08
“Question for sellers about views” – 5-27-08
“Help Etsy Communicate better with it's Community” – 6-16-08

It's a bit early to pass judgement on the last one in the list, as it was just begun yesterday (although most of the ideas being shared have been asked for countless times before). But as far as I am aware, to date NONE – count them: that would be exactly zero – have been implemented/acted on.

Interesting point, eh? Keep those great ideas coming!

Sick of resellers on Etsy? Come flag with Flaggy

We at EtsyBitch just got a tip about a brand new blog that calls out resellers on Etsy, Flaggy. Now, we've all seen some good, honest sellers (like Thaidreams) get hounded wrongfully for being resellers, so I'm cautious about this one, but I think, if used for obvious or proven cases, that it could be focus a useful spotlight on some of the worst offenders on Etsy (and they are legion). Some resellers have been protected to a ridiculous extent by Admin, and I'd, personally, love to see a few of those guys nailed.

I hope that Flaggy (I picture Flaggy as looking like a disgusted Swimmy, for some reason) adds a way to submit tips and really makes sure that it only calls out obvious cases -- and I predict that if it does, it's going to be a very busy site.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Etsy: Your Source for Big Box Retail

Oh look, a "Scrapbook Superstore" has opened an Etsy shop. With 3,000 square feet of scrapbooky goodness straight from the seller's loving hands to yours! Isn't that what a collective is all about?

I bet there's some good scrapbooking deals in this store. Let's check 'em out. Hmm, I bet I could really use this Cutter Bee Value Pack, only $26.50! Wait a minute - there's a link to their retail website in their shop announcement. Let's investigate. Wow, check it out! If I buy the Cutter Bee Value Pack from their retail website at the low low rock-bottom price of $20.40, I'll save myself six dollars and ten cents! That's a week's worth of renewing fees right there!

Boy, I am sure am glad Etsy allows big box retailers to open shops. Otherwise I don't know how I'd pay my Etsy bill.

Monday, June 16, 2008

How to do a trade fair

We've been discussing in a previous post how unorganized and unprofessional (as well as how unfriendly) Etsy's craft show booths are. Here are a few pics of proof:

Julie minds the Etsy booth Anda at the Etsy booth with her whale pouch STITCH- Etsy Booth
Etsy + Art vs Craft (Round 6) ETSY booth Etsy looooooooooove!

Thats a small sampling from a search on Flickr.

The sad part is, they don't look like a 60-person 27-million dollar e-commerce site with a million members and hundreds of thousands of online shops. They look like an Art Therapy outreach who is showing off what their geriatric, mentally handicapped or perhaps low income inner city kids are doing. If I saw this booth at the local street fair I would wander right by. Most of the shots show so little of what Etsy is, bascially seeming to be just a few pieces of whatever they felt like hauling along. All that's missing is a plate for donations.

What's sadder is some the street team are scads more saavy.

Our booth! PDX Etsy @ Mississippi Street Fair

Do you see a differnce? (did you see the WWSD wheel?)

Branding, polish, and NOT looking like a gypsy caravan. The street fairs went so far as to make banner that LOOK like the sites logo. I think the people in Brooklyn have forgotten they HAVE a logo. They instead keep tossing out dodgy banners with appliqué with themes that have NOTHING to do with etsy, and most of all they don't look professional. What have we been asking for since post #1? Professionalism.

Now I've seen a great many street/artisan/craft fairs in my time. Here's what Etsy should do: Stop making heir staff make stuff, and instead invest say a little of that 27MIL and get a proper trade/craft show kit.

Logo. They have one, they need to use it. A white EZUp is easy, but you hang a Etsy color LOGO banner under the header and it's done, but for the extra mile get someone to screen print the Etsy logo on the EZUp and it would soar higher to respectablility. If they went crazy with the image improvement they could get custom made tent with the etsy colors and logo and really stand out and look like an honest to god Internet sensation. Next, ditch the curtains from Grandma and instead opt for nice branded crisp table cloths. Have a couple pop up trade show billboards to the sides or back with perhaps a nicely organized mosisc dozens of typical Etsy items printed on them in a nice clean grid, and have some more on possibly some vertical banners out front. Now, on those clean branded tables have Etsy business cards with some fact and figures on the back (how many shops, ho wmuch listings and the like are), a couple tv's play some videos of Etsians raving about how they have quit their day jobs or found their niche.

Now that's a trade/craft show booth that will be crowed with people and not embarass the ones already listing with you. How about it Etsy, how about growing up and looking like it?

From the Bitches Auxiliary

At 3:17 PM today (June 16) marymary started a new thread in the Ideas fora titled "Help Etsy Communicate better with its Community".

Immediately there was an onslought of posts expressing ideas to better the communication. Of course we've all been screaming for months that Etsy should stop locking threads and redirecting us to old threads in the Bugs fora.

At 3:46PM RevolvingDork closed sherrytruitt's post in Site Help titled "THE VIEWS PROBLEM cannot be fixed" and how exactly did he do this.. by redirecting us to a thread from APRIL about the views.

RevolvingDork says: "I thank you all for attempting to reduce confusion in
the forums, but I'm going to close this one up because it's a little

The view issue can and will be fixed, but it may take a little while.
Please see this thread for all the current information on the

Oh Etsy tell us again how much you value our opinion and wish to communicate better.

Quotable Quotes: Thread Assessment

I know this is last week's trainwreck - but (in case you missed it) this post is funny as hell.

"Category: Train wreck

Starting point: hypocrisy

High point: reference to past similar threads

Low Point: Menstrual reference

Point at which it left the tracks: Page 2, LaPella's post

Point at which silliness stepped in: When ninja pigs were produced

Appeals to rational behavior: Scattered, but ignored

all in all, a great one to bookmark for later."

Quotable Quotes - Getting the shaft


I was a participating artist at the Renegade craft show in Brooklyn this weekend where etsy had a booth front and center. Let me tell you about the image I got from them there. Thier booth was uninspiring and I was unimpressed.

I went by 3 times to see if once, I'd get anything from them. A "hi". A "are you a vendor here?" I got plenty of free chapstick. but that was about it. I thought that in the 16 hours that I was at the show, that maybe one of the many people from etsy would come by and say hi, or come by and talk up etsy at least to me or one of the many vendors around me. Nope.

Etsy talks about grass roots but being handed a flyer means nothing to me. Having someone actually taking the time to talk to the people who support them and their so called "hand made pledge" is quite another thing.

Do they really expect us to support them when we do not get the same in return?

I think marymary's comments and new thread is yet another smokescreen to avoid answering some very important issues people have here.

From spending some time on the forums and also knowing in advance that I would see them at the show, I got exactly what I thought I'd get from etsy. Next to nothing.

How Much Does It Cost to Sell on Etsy?

From time to time, in response to a complaint about Etsy's customer service, we'll see a cheerleader point out that Etsy is a great deal for sellers, or that it's the cheapest place around to sell your handmade goods. Clearly these people are lacking some fundamental math skills.

Let's think about a hypothetical high volume supply seller (I know, we're supposed to pretend they don't exist, but humor me here). Say this seller lists and sells 1500 items a month, which is about the level some of our top supply sellers do (I know this because I used to look at Etsy Tools before the site was hounded out of existence). If those items sell for $5 each, that seller pays $300 in listing fees and $262.50 in final value fees. That totals $562.50 per month, or $6750 per year. That's a shitload of money to pay for an ecommerce store that doesn't even have an integrated shopping cart function. For seven thousand dollars, you could buy yourself a lovely independent website and advertise it pretty well, couldn't you?

What about the more typical low volume seller of handmade goods? Let's say you make beaded jewelry and add your work to the HALF MILLION jewelry items listed on Etsy. If you've got 20 items in your shop, and by renewing something 3 times a day in the desperate hope that someone will notice your stuff during the few seconds it appears at the top of the category, you manage to sell 10 pieces at $15 each (which seems to be the average Etsy price), what do you pay for your $150 in sales? $4 in listing fees. $18 in relisting fees. $5.25 in final value fees. You get to spend a whopping 18% of your gross sales, or $27.25 - at that rate, assuming your sales are consistent, you're paying Etsy $327 a year for the privilege of floundering in the sea of jewelry on the site. And that's before your PayPal fees.

But for that money, you get the exposure that comes with being part of this beautiful collection of handmade goods, right? Well, if someone can find your pieces among 500,000 others, that's great. But Etsy will help you get some exposure by promoting itself and your shop for you, right? Oh, no, I forgot - admin are constantly telling us to get out there and spread the word OURSELVES about Etsy's handmade goodness. You should buy a tote bag from the labs with a funky picture that in some cryptic way tells the world about Etsy, and once the people passing us on the street notice it, they'll rush right over to the site and spend a couple of hours fighting with a useless search function to dig through the huge jewelry category and buy a pair of earrings from your shop. Or not. You could pay another $15 for one day's worth of showcase exposure - do that twice and you've more than doubled your monthly fees. I don't think there's a business advisor out there who would tell you that spending 15 to 30 percent of your sales on advertising is reasonable (but remember that business school is so un-hip, and it's not the Etsy way).

So maybe you spend that advertising money elsewhere in the hope that you'll get some traffic to your shop. And then you can look at your views and see whether your advertising expenditure has been worth it.

Oh, no, sorry, your views are being reset, so you can't figure that out, either.

Etsy. What a bargain!

And The Award Goes To...

Friday in the EtsyLabs Lounge Robwhite held his normal "office hours". It just so happened to occur smack dab at the peak of the 'Etsy editing transaction pages scandal'.

Everyone wanted answers, and they wanted them yesterday. Rob had not much to say. Luckily Rob is well liked by all, it could have been much much worse. If Rokali had been there it would have swiftly spiraled into a clusterfuck.

Many of the lampworkers who were part of the site that broke this scandal were there to demand answers in very polite ways, and yet Robwhite was in there alone. ALONE in the face of a major public relations blunder so huge it's been on at least a dozen websites. So big it's taken over most of the forums in various ways and has resulted in scenting the Etsy air with general surly revolty yumminess. (Have you noticed how deliciously bitchy the forums are the last few days?)

There were no other Etsy staff in with Robwhite to face down the growling, seething crowd. They sacrificed him as if tossing a lamb into the shark tank. They left him hanging in the wind while they made dry ice mustaches, and still Rob was friendly and trying his best to keep up and try to at least deal with everyone. His one hour turning to over three and forgoing food and drink to try to answer things the best he could in the typically Etsy non-committal way. That's not his fault. He did what he could.

His hands were tied, because let's face it, Etsy doesn't KNOW what it did that was so wrong, and they don't get why the whole scandal was so scandalous. They don't get why anyone was even upset so they have no answers to give on what they will do to prevent it from happening again.

We felt sorry for Robwhite being abandoned by his coworkers and slugging it through all the same like the trooper he is. So much so we decided our he'd be the first, and likely the only Etsy Admin, to receive....

The EtsyBitch Award For Valor!

As is his right as a member of the order, he may style himself as a "Knight of the Bitch" and may bear any of these avatars we have prepared to represent his status:

Photobucket or overlay this star to his avatar or account banner... Photobucket

Congrats Robwhite! We really honestly do appreciate all you do, or try to do. We know they are idiots.

We plan on issuing more EB Awards For Valor in the coming weeks to those in the forums committing acts of sense and surliness. So get out there and ask questions they don't want to answer, smack down the smackdownable, and most importantly... get bitchy about Etsy!

Quotable Quote - Amen!

Preaching to the choir:

I believe the level of customer service you receive is proportionate to the level of respect a company has for it's customers.

Lack of or poor customer service tells me that the customer is not held in high regard.

Good customer service tells me that I, as a customer, am valued and appreciated.

Given the fact that nearly 3 years in existence with no discernable customer service, it is safe to assume that as customers, we mean very little to Etsy. Except for what they can bleed out of us in the way of listing, renewing and final value fees if we are lucky enough to also sell what we list.

I have never seen a site where people are so grateful and thankful for shoddy service and poor communication. This tells me that they really have no clue what else is out there.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Quotable Quotes: Fraud

This thread is worth reading, post and be heard before Admin wakes up and shuts it down.

"The fraud is pervasive in all media here on Etsy.

Criminals have discovered that they can come to Etsy and steal photos and copy and tags from a seller, and open their own shop. Criminals have discovered that they can buy mass-produced items and sell them as artist/shop owner handmade.

Criminals have discovered that Etsy will NOT enforce policy."

Don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out

****THIS JUST IN****

Ulljasbeads, the Etsy seller who was claiming other people's work as her own, and whose sold listings were edited after the sale by Etsy, has been hit with Ye Olde Bricke Walle.


From the Bitches Auxiliary: Why

Reasons why forum posters ask inane questions 14 times in a row are:

1. The Rules and Regs are in 10 different sections and they don't have 3 weeks to read them all.

2. Their mother, sister, girlfriend, boyfriend, dog, cat, goldfish, little 2 year old brother and 1 year old neice already have 50 Etsy Shops between them and they never read the Rules either, and they've been selling god knows what for the last 2 years.

3. Everyone knows Etsy really doesn't have any rules; they just make them up as they go along.

4. Out of 150,000 stores, there are so many that don't belong, who's going to notice I put up a store selling repackaged Q-Tips and labelled them "handmade"?

5. What???? You mean I have to pack up those Q-Tips I sold and actually put postage on them and send them?

We'll take ten

Cost of one fraudulent Etsy listing:

Percentage taken by Etsy when fraudulent listing sells:

One hour of minimum wage for Etsy admin to ignore seller-provided proof of fraud and edit fraudulent sold listing

Artistic revenge on Etsy admin by a pissed-off lampworker:
absolutely fucking priceless