Thursday, June 12, 2008

Rage Against the Machine

The past couple days Etsy has been starting to feel a sudden increase in heat from its customers regarding its opacity and general non-openness.

We started off the morning Wednesday with calls for Etsy to fix what is broken and unlike the post like it the day before it actually lived longer than 2 pages.

Then later was the 3-part thread that started with accusations of a bead seller reselling other beadmakers work and that it appeared Etsy had edited some sold pages since there were statements that were now missing from the original listings, yet the seller was still selling. After that was shut down, Quirke asked for clarification that Etsy wasn't/was editing sold listings. That took only two pages to be shut down with a non-helpful SarahSays lock of death. (Kind of like a blue screen of death, only less informative.)

Not taking a non-answer as an answer, Quirke once again poked the admin by simply asking for the same answer in another thread, but this time Matt replied with an honest-to-god actual informational reply of more than one paragraph, and without locking it and referring readers to another useless and locked thread that they also never answered those questions. Matt is good and sets off no BS sirens in our heads, and for that reason we love Matt in an almost warm and tingly way. (We love Quirke too, because we like people who like pointy sticks and demand answers to hard questions as much as we do.)

Some good came out of the last one, as many suggested that while things might have been removed to suit DCMA rules, no one was notified of the deletions, and no deletion notation was made on the listings to keep things in the open and on the up and up. (I want to know why the shop in question wasn't shut down personally.) You can still chime in, as of this moment it's still open.

I would like to think EtsyBitch has helped inspire this rash of rampant surliness, but that would be cocky (and my name isn't "The Cocky One").

35 Comments:

forum rubbernecker said...

Soooo..... they can edit sold listings, thus removing the record that shows what a lying copying cheat someone is, but when we have the occasional verbal fart in the fora we cannot remove our posts because they believe "the record should stand"? ok......

excuseme said...

as per usual it's the "do as we say, even when we contradict ourselves...and not as we do"

dis little piggy said...

"I want to know why the shop in question wasn't shut down personally."

If you're talking about the shop I think you're talking about, it probably has a great deal to do with 1,361 sales since they opened last December.

If it's not that shop, feel free to edit my post. Heh.

WTF said...

maybe they're having trouble proving the fraud since the seller isn't US-based?

marie said...

wtf- according to evidence that's been gathered, the seller really lives in Texas, but just says they live abroad. They also sell edibles, and it's been proven that the address the edibles were shipped FROM is in Texas. And the address some things were shipped TO is as well.

So there's a lot going on. And etsy didn't help any by changing those listings.

In regard to this specific case, you can look here (you'll have to register, but it clarifies a LOT):

http://www.lampworketc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=92814

and dis little piggy- I too think the 1,361 sales has something to do with it.

dis little piggy said...

The seller's whereabouts are a little hazy in general as her eBay purchases are shipped to Texas.

In this day and age it's very easy to sell and buy from two locations. Especially when small things like beads are involved.

I used to buy from an eBay seller who lived in Germany and listed from Germany but shipped everything over to a sister-in-law in New Jersey after it was listed. The SIL then shipped the individual packages to the winning bidders.

They weren't buying and reselling and claiming the work as their own. They were completely upfront about how it worked. It was just easier to get one big package through US Customs at a time.

Also, I may be wrong, but I don't think Etsy needs legal proof of fraud to shut down a shop as they have shut down quite a few shops for much, MUCH less.

I believe that they just don't want to.

One has to wonder why.

dis little piggy said...

Argh, I type too slowly.

Thanks, Marie!

dis little piggy said...

Does anyone else wonder why the seller would do such a thing?

I can understand* buying and reselling illegal drugs or fine jewelry or anything with a high value but, despite the 1,361 sales, she's really not making a huge killing on the bead reselling.

One would think that in the long run, it would be much more profitable and satisfying (not to mention easier ie: less lying and hiding involved) to take some more lampwork classes, develop her own style and sell her own product.



*Please note I typed "understand" not "condone."

Andy Mathis said...

As I understand it, 1 person lives in Texas, a relative, (genetic close relative) lives in Italy.

marie said...

there were instances were she bought beads for around $15, but sold them for 3x that amount and more. All the while claiming she made them.

And I believe she (the fraud) is in Texas; that's where the cookies came from (and there's even speculation that she didn't make those cookies, but got them from a local TX bakery).

It's just crazy, and goes on and on. The worst is what Etsy did. They are helping cover it up, whether they intended to or not, by changing the sold listings.

impetuous said...

I am beside myself. Etsy Bitch this is DAMN good reporting! I may not even venture into the forums anymore at all.

What a fuckin day!

dis little piggy said...

I know not all Etsy admins live in NYC. Do any of them live in Texas?

Maybe the bead thief is boinking one of them?

impetuous said...

scandalous!

Andy Mathis said...

haha. boinking for beads.

lessa said...

Nah, no boinking necessary. She's probably just supplying them with cookies. Admin seem to have a fondness for baked goods.

The Righteous One said...

lol boinking for beads...I'm tempted to make that the phrase of the day!

Ahem...but we don't want to start any rumors here

Anyway, Etsy's having a rough week ;)

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Gelly said...

Thanks so much for posting about this topic! The fraud was brought to Etsy's attention nearly 3 weeks ago, and many of us feel like we are just spinning our wheels without getting anywhere. I think knowledge is power, and the more people that know about this, the better.

Dellessanna said...

I find this whole situation frustrating. Especially since I have a feeling Etsy will never contact the customers that this woman had duped.

impetuous said...

I just read up on this shop and saw the evidence. This is appalling. How does Etsy justify keeping this shop open? An idiot can see what she is doing!

What's up with all of the anon posts?

Dellessanna said...

A lot of people have been wondering that very thing for weeks. Just why is she still open. I'm so disappointed in Etsy. Moreso because I was one of the people that bought some of the beads in question and was blown off when I went to them about it. :|

TheSneakyOne said...

Anon at 704pm, please read the paragraphs above the posting box before you comment. You must have some kind of name. Anon doesn't cut it.

Violet said...

Thanks, OhSneakyOne!

Etsy has delayed this long enough. I understand trying to do it right, but they've done so much wrong already. It's escaped into the Blogosphere, it's all over the Internet, and everywhere Etsy is, Etsy looks bad.

As a shopowner, wish it hadn't happened or that they'd taken care of it. It's almost like they were taking better care of the perp than the victim.

kitten said...

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5661805&page=1 And here's a URL to a thread that is sure to be locked(if it is not already) about the godawful price/kit mess going on with the makeup sellers concerning BRUSHES of all things! This crap has been going on for over a YEAR!!! STILL no answer!

eclipse said...

Etsy has the right to refuse service to anyone at any time for any reason. In the past I think they have used that clause irresponsibly, it really should be reserved for rare and extreme cases. Cases exactly like this lampwork bead case. They don't have to wait for the defrauded customers and artists to file suit. They can do the right thing, right now. There is more than enough evidence. Editing the sold items description does not undo the crime. Removing the beads made by others from their store does not undo the crime.
Etsy, just close their store. Is that really the kind of person you want associated with Etsy? Etsy is supposed to be about making a living from what YOU make.

impetuous said...

alright, love Matt to pieces, blah blah blah, but this I don't get:

"we do and will not alter"

That sounds like, they do infact alter things. AND they won't.... how do you have those two things happening at the same time?

impetuous said...

"and there's even speculation that she didn't make those cookies, but got them from a local TX bakery"

this has got to be the misinformation they are talking about......right?

They're saying all the rest is true, but there's a little misunderstanding about whether or not she got the baked goods from the bakery uptown or the bakery downtown...

CLOSE THE SHOP!

eclipse said...

Matt said: "As a general policy we do and will not alter any sold listing records."

I think the "not" qualifier is supposed to modify both verbs "do" and "will"

so he really means "As a general policy we do not and will not"

(but as an exception, they do and will.)

impetuous said...

mm,hmm.
you're kind of a buzz kill for bitching...

Bead Fanatic and Iffy Etsy Buyer said...

I really do hope that people will visit the Lampwork Etc forum to find out all of the details about the Bead and Bakery Fraud.

Here are the threads that brought the entire thing to light in the first place:
~ a condensed version with "the facts" http://www.lampworketc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=93411

~ the very long, and interesting version with "extra" http://www.lampworketc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=92814

~ the "name that bead" thread, for buyers who have bought lampwork beads from the seller, and want to identify the true artist http://www.lampworketc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=94040

It is so wonderful to see this horrible issue getting some exposure on sites such as this one, and elsewhere on the internet, as Etsy's response has been FAR LESS than satisfactory!

impetuous said...

Links to screen shots please, if anyone has them.

bead freak said...

If you want an example of an edited listing you can go here: http://www.abeadisborn.com/ and click on the "edited triangle bead listing" link.

spetsy said...

I just looked at the "altered" listings. I'm completely disgusted. Who the hell is that seller, one of admin's spouses?

Who else would Etsy change sold listings for... unless lawyers are breathing down their necks?

With all the shit going on these days, someone at Etsy has the balls and the time to alter illegal listings????? That's fucking low. Can't that be used against them somehow in court?

Dawanda is looking better all the time.

Hook It Up! Jewelry said...

After reading this, I may be inspired to commit more acts of rampant surliness :)

Stay tuned...

FotherMucker said...

SarahSays says:
While I cannot talk about specific cercumstances, there is misinformation in this thread.

Our policies about removing material are stated here: http://www.etsy.com/copyright_policy.php

Sarah

Um..."cercumstances"...this is who is representing Etsy? Scary!