Tuesday, June 24, 2008

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 Craftster.org, 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.

84 Comments:

SuzyQJenn said...

viva la revolution

the stinky one said...

And now there is a fourth: http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5681008&page=1
Thanks to another knee-jerk reaction of an alleged 'calling out' in one of the 3 started on this subject.

DejaVu anyone?

wristeroni said...

I must admit, I nearly fell off my chair laughing when I saw "Cupcake Night" on their schedule.

Maybe August will bring "Freaky PonyCar Friday Snacktime"

We don't have to write the jokes . . . Etsy writes them for us!

BTW, I'm not even a seller (I'm a buyer-only) and I've become obsessed with the giant trainwreck . . . no, make that HINDENBERG that Etsy is becoming.

The Kinky One said...

The Hindenberg took less time to crash and burn.

I'd say this is in super-duper slow motion.

Kali said...

I've been in business since 2002, and I've invested thousands of dollars in my business. It's a little late for me to watch a tutorial on how to make something else!

Fucked up, it's all fucked up. It could have been so great, and it's just....not.

*headdesk*

lessa said...

wristeroni,

Me too. Cupcake Night, Etsy is turning into a bad parody.

I'm sure upcoming nights will involve bunnies, bikes and mustaches.

Foxglove Studios said...

I just want to slap DanielleXO. Yes, dear, you've given us all sorts of business tutorials. Somehow this justifies what you're doing now?

Can you believe they locked that thread for "calling out"? WTF? "There was a subtle call out in one post." Please...

The new thread feels very angry compared to the previous one. No doubt someone will not "respect others" and that one will be locked, too.

I've had it. *&^@#%@#

WindysDesigns said...

Oh, too bad I'm muted, because I'd be calling BULLSHIT once again.

wristeroni said...

And the new Etsy "Leader" is conspicuous in her absense. I haven't head anything more about her since the "WTF drumming video"

wristeroni said...

Don't worry, Windy, we're calling BULLSHIT for you.

muchacha K and SPEAKEASY BOUTIQUE said...

I'm excited to see Forum dwellers pushing this issue so persistently. It's basically THE issue with Etsy. What is their focus and how are they going to deliver it...every business has to address these issues at some point, and many have to revisit them. Sounds like everyone's ready to see Etsy take a stab at it!

Heather said...

What fucking kills me are the cheerleaders who have - wait for it - 15(!!) sales talking about how etsy is everything they've ever dreamed they could ever want it to be and it's perrrrfect and we are all just bitchy whiners.

Um, call me when you're closing in on your 100th, 200th, 300th + sale and tell me how perrrrrfect etsy still is, m'kay?

Old Hippie Bitch said...

In the thread referenced, RobWhite says,

"Development of features for this site follows a different process, and one that doesn't easily lend itself to a schedule quite like this one."

Man, he's got that 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.

(I'm too modest to spell that last word the other way.)

lessa said...

I'll say it again. What is the engineering department doing? Twenty-one people, 21 people and they can't get squat done. That just seems a massive number for one site that on the grand scale of the internet community isn't that big.

wristeroni said...

Hats off Old Hippie Bitch --
"Etsy just wants you to wait up all night for their booty call" . . . is a classic

el-stinko-armpit said...

Wow! Great article, Bitches!

Personally, Etsy Labs turned me off when I saw that video aeons ago of some dude with an electrified finger giving people shocks. That was my major WTFEtsy Moment. As for the dopey bag fusing fetish, IMO no one should be heating/melting industrial plastics in their home. Etsy legal should be checking out the health-related issues with using all kinds of manufactured product remnants instead of endorsing their usual kookiness in the Labs. While the bags may be mostly inert, I've seen crafts (no calling out, I'll be good!) on Etsy that re-use toxic components in ways that will make contact with skin and hair. No no no, especially if you are pregnant or have young children in your home.

What priorities Etsy may have IMO are just plain wrong, for my business at least. The good news for them is the size of the site keeps increasing as the kooksterism replicates itself ad infinitum. Etsy is nowhere near exhausting the global market of females 14-34.

Ivydee said...

Add me to the list of sellers who are fed up with this bullshit. Its taken less than a year for not just the pretty shine to wear off of Etsy for me, but for it to get ugly and tarnished.

Its funny, I've LIVED those forum boards for almost a year now, but lately I can barely bring myself to post. I start to type and somewhere in the middle, I just stop caring. Why bother, its not going to make a shit of difference.

This latest BS just goes to prove that Etsy has absolutely no desire to help its existing customer base. All it wants to do is bring in more and more sellers, teach them how to make crap that they can list and list and list and list. Its become so increasingly clear that the majority of their revenue is made off of its sellers, not buyers.

Why try to bring in new buyers who may only spend a few dollars here and there when you can lure in newbie crafters, with the promise of fame and fortune, who will spend a year buying AND selling on the site.

And no, I'm not threatened that its going to take my business away. Its the fact that THIS is their priority. Not improving site functionality. Not ridding the site of resellers. Not providing better customer service.

No, cupcake night. Thats what's important.

(thanks bitches for having a place I can actually rant... I'd like to say I feel better for having done so, but I don't)

old hippie bitch said...

Thanks, wristeroni.

I agree with el-stinko that etsy's priorities are now wrong for my business, too. In 2006 it was a great venue for me. In 2008 it just sucks.

I'm also pleased that those threads keep pushing.

The Righteous One said...

That's why we're here IvyDee, because we all need to rant.

Oh and the booty call comment - priceless!

shootmeinthefoot said...

Heck, I may as well hang out in craftster.org without all the fluff and have a good time. Ocassionally check back if Etsy is still up and running or crashed my shop with their biz incapability.
The forum stinks for the most part, as if a huge part of posters have no brain at all, but got a big fat cupcake in their head.
After one year there, I am so turned off.

wb said...

I'd like a tutorial on how to make the dope they're smoking, shooting, snorting and lacing their freakin' mustache covered rainbow laden unicorn shat upon cupcakes with.

And then, the lack of tools for my etsy interwebs business won't seem so bad, man.

Windy'sDesigns said...

You notice how any mention of the new COO goes unreplied to? I know, I know, a lot of things get ignored, but somehow I get the feeling that rather than tell us that a 'state of the Etsy union address' is in the works, they're going to spring it on us like they did the view counter 'fix'. Surprise.

And then all of Etsy can grovel and kiss her feet while she plays the drums and tries to act all hip.

Either that or she's run screaming from Gold Street and on her hands and knees back at NPR begging for her job back. Any job.

marie said...

A bunch of bullshit, this is just pissing me off. Give me a search that works, categories that make sense, and a place to enter coupon codes before you go teaching people how to make a bunch of junk.

I say we stop relisting, renewing, and adding items until etsy tells us what direction it's going in. If only people would really do it, I know it's too much to hope for.

27 said...

In the thread referenced, RobWhite says,

"Development of features for this site follows a different process, and one that doesn't easily lend itself to a schedule quite like this one."

------------------------

Um, bullshit.

Etsy devs should take 5 minutes away from leveling their Orc Mages in order to check out the World of Warcraft "In development" pages and the forum where they post progress reports on bugs and updates. I'm no programmer, but I'm pretty sure that game development is a lot more complex than an e-commerce site. Yet, companies like Blizzard manage to meet their deadlines and keep their customers in the loop if a delay arises. With 21 developers, why can't Etsy do the same?

I don't know what kind of unicorn infested fantasy land the Etsy devs live in, but I'm sure any developer on Earth would give his left nut to work in a place that didn't have project scheduling and *gasp* deadlines.

Once again, Etsy struts around the borders of common sense acting as if they're doing something "new" and chartering unexplored territory. The concept surrounding Etsy may be fresh but it's still nothing more than basic e-commerce.

the stinky one said...

Photo by Anda the Amazing Graphics Queen

Somebody shoot me now.

The Gypsy Jewels said...

Etsy prepare for the mass exodus...
it has started!

*shrugs

el-stinko-armpit said...

No online multi-shop venue relies on their customers (the shop owners) making sales. One of the owners of a large online venue told me (on the phone, so I don't have anything typed with headers to prove this) that businesses like theirs rely on seller fees to be profitable. Any sales commissions are just gravy, and cannot be depended upon to generate reveue. A venue cannot guarantee anyone will make a sale, so they focus on recruiting sellers who will make the venue more attractive to other sellers and so on and so forth.

Since Etsy charges no fee for opening a shop, the renewal system had to happen. Does anyone recall who started this practice? Maybe the old post is on the forum archive somewhere?

Anywho, maybe if someone wants to strike a blow against the Etsy Empire they should avoid renewing anything for a month, until Labor Day, or until Thanksgiving. Do something else with the $$$ to grow/promote your biz instead.

zoo said...

I don't even know that the idea is all that fresh. I mean, all they did was say "hey, let's steal ebay's handmade customers" and crafter's lady probably said "get these sellers a place to sell" etsy was born. Sites like Etsy were around before Etsy, but Etsy did it bigger.

Now that they've made all this money, I think they just thumb their noses at us sellers [that's right, I said it, thumb their noses!] I've got about 300 sales under my wing in 2 years, all because of diligent marketing of myself and non reliance on Etsy. If I did nothing, I'd sell nothing. And considering the prices of my items, I'm doing pretty well. $30-60 a pop and 300 sales isn't chicken feed.

But I am slowly realizing that Etsy doesn't really care about us sellers. Etsy cares about two things. They are small, round, flat, shiny and silver in color. Because those two things, as long as they keep coming in, allows Etsy to fuck off in the office and feed craft people non-nonsensical drivel about programming. It's a fucking website! Half of it is flash. If the programmers can't understand the code they are writing, why are they employees?


A lot of the time, when Etsy speaks, I feel like they are speaking down to us. Like we're stupid little children that have been huddled into the school yard. Part of the problem is the new sellers who haven't had a shop on etsy, and are so eager to be there they can't help but to crap rainbows all over the place when they aren't familiar with what's going on.



Every day the tension is mounting. Every single moment, of every single day. Etsy is shaky now... and there's more than 30 choices for handmade e commerce shops just waiting to snag the good sellers. If their smart, they are reading this, and they are taking notes. Because if things go the way they are, we'll all be selling elsewhere this time next year.

Etsy will be another failed e commerce startup. Three years is young, but 3-5 years make or break a company on the web.

zoo said...

ech, my grammar is a mess up there. but you get the point.

zoo said...

armpit, exactly. The only thing Etsy needs, is more sellers and more dimes. Past that, why should they really give a crap that they have 300,000 shops with NO SALES.

Etsy made it's sale. And that's all that matters.

zoo said...

By the way. I sell very well outside of Etsy. So any of you that fear losing your Etsy shop will kill your sales, it won't. I promise you, you CAN sell outside of Etsy. Etsy should be an additional place you peddle your wares. Not the only place.

But if it is. I suggest that all sellers work on learning to manage multiple stores and marketing techniques.

the stinky one said...

el-stinko, you're right. I've said it before that the way Etsy does things is really because it benefits them. They are actually quite savvy in giving lip service to it's users, making them believe we are a community and that we have a say in how things are done. It's a clever illusion and hundreds of new users buy into that illusion daily.

If I thought we could gather enough people and create a large enough movement to stop renewing for even a month I'd be on that bandwagon so fast your head would spin. But it will never happen. And Etsy knows it.

Etsy always has been and always will be in the business of selling a dream. Many of us actually believed in that dream, though, and have become disillusioned.

We still try to fight the good fight though, still hanging on to that little shred of hope that the illusion might have even a smidgen of reality, but as time goes by, and more and more comes to the surface, it becomes apparent that is not the case.

for those of you who still believe that Etsy and it's sellers are a team, I feel sorry for you.

Ivydee said...

My goal for 2009 is to convert my portfolio site to a shopping site. I'm a web designer and can program fairly well so its not out of the realm of possibility, it just pulls me away from my ability to make more product. So for now, I will continue building up my stock for the holiday, then in the new year focus on independence.

To hell with Etsy. If I'm going to have to do all the marketing and promote myself I'm going to drive traffic to MY site, where I can track my marketing efforts, not have to compete with a million other sellers or worry about a potential customer turning into a competitor. Oh and I can keep the 20% of my sales I loose to fees.

I'll keep a few items in my shop, but in reality, its just going to consider it a form of advertising.

j. hart photography said...

love the OP here. i've read through the comments and i pretty much feel the same as everyone else. when i came to Etsy i thought it was something pretty cool. boy was i wrong.

it seems like very few people are selling anything there. a small handful of artists, some soap makers, and some supply shops. i don't see Etsy as growing at all. it's very disappointing.

and WTF is up with the "calling out" BS??? admin says their trying to enforce the rules more consistently like we asked??? give me a break.

zoo said...

"I'll keep a few items in my shop, but in reality, its just going to consider it a form of advertising."



This is absolutely the best approach to take.

impetuous said...

Stella says:
"In hindsight, perhaps the thread could have carried on since the incident was a small one, but we also are striving for more consistency in enforcement of policies -- something many of you have asked for."
_______

That's smart Stella. Volley our concerns and requests right back into our faces.

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5680423&page=19

Ivydee said...

I don't recall anyone asking Admin to start hallucinating incidents of calling-out. Must be the sugar-high from all the cupcakes.

The Righteous One said...

"That's smart Stella. Volley our concerns and requests right back into our faces."

It's an old trick. They always seem to do that.

Pisses me off, too

MajorFuckingEtsyBurnout said...

Flash & Labs. Awesome. I find it hilarious that Danielle implies that we are all making a living selling handmade & in a subtle way that those that take the Labs classes will be too. Uh, I'm a top seller and my DAY JOB pays the bills. But, I digress..

heather said...
What fucking kills me are the cheerleaders who have - wait for it - 15(!!) sales talking about how etsy is everything they've ever dreamed ...
________________________
Um, ex-fuckin-actly. I can guarantee not one of them has a situation or 2 or 3 where they needed the support/help from Admin. or else they would be here on EB.
*************************

el-stinko-armpit said... IMO no one should be heating/melting industrial plastics in their home. Etsy legal should be checking out the health-related issues ...
____________________________
This was my exact first thought too, um WTF? And soldering, enameling?...
*****************

Maybe they should have classes on how to ignore your clients, ignore site issues, defer the masses with xoxo's, train sheep, blow $27 mil, take pictures of Anda's baby, etc...

impetuous said...

Close the forums.
Lock every thread.
This is insulting to everyone in their with half a brain.

Nice to hear from Windys! So far 74% of the votes on the "Do you think Windys should have been banned" poll are a no!

Chin up Grinch!

zoo said...

Oh look!

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5681408

MajorFuckingEtsyBurnout said...

Windy, I miss the shit out of your posts~Are you perma-muted or is it just temp?

Windy's Designs said...

Lol! There's a poll about my banning? I must have missed it!

As for my banning, it's what they call 'indefinitely', whatever that means.

Maybe on cupcake night they'll be so high on sugar they'll reinstate me.

One can only hope.

MajorFuckingEtsyBurnout said...

Crizzap.

Well, I'll cross my mustache and hope for the best Windy ; )

the fluffy one said...

Man, I'm just a buyer and it makes me sad to watch sellers get screwed by Etsy. It makes me furious when sellers actually say "thank you sir, may I have another" when Etsycorps announces how they are going to screw them some more. Jeebus. It's pathetic.

impetuous said...

Here's your polling place Windy's!

http://indienightmares.blogspot.com/

godot said...

1. I think that picture of Maria looks like an older version of Danielle xxoo, how many xxoo's are PC?

2. I'm betting she worked one week at etsy and hit the road.

Most new COO's won't publicly answer questions, but they do put out a short vision statement. Vision statement, ha ha!

zoo said...

"Without us the sellers there is no etsy!"

Why is this so hard for sellers and Etsy to grasp?

Why are so many sellers willing to take it in the ass by a company they PAY to:

"have given you an opportunity to show off your incredible talent."


I can't even believe someone actually said that.

SewCrazyDogLady said...

I cannot get over how effed up etsy is.. seriously..

I am running out of words.

I'm Not Your Bitch Bitch said...

I've almost had enough of this etsy thing, they obviously could care less about sellers and why should they with all the listing and relisting going on...I am going to start my own site, sign up for other inexpensive sites and use etsy as advertising only and if I sell something it's a bonus...I'll still probably only have 15 sales (jewelry-sigh) but at least I won't be dependent on etsy...they all seem to be a bunch of modern day hippies where life is beautiful all the time, but obviously they have theirs, not starving, good thing they don't need etsy to make sales. Last thing, I sure would like to know where the COO is too, is she really from NPR, well that's lala land too...

the stinky one said...

What does a chief operations officer do exactly? If she doesn't have the capacity to tell Kalin what to do, what good is she? She's just another Etsy Rainbow Slinger.

WindysDesigns said...

Sorry guys, it was me posting before, I just forgot my login information for my blog. But hereafter I will post under this ID because it just occurred to me that anyone could post with my 'name'.

Anyways, thanks for the link to the poll impetuous (I think, lol).

3400 sales and ready to gtfo said...

Ugh ugh ugh. I think half of us wouldn't be so constantly pissed off if some amateurs with 10 sales didn't keep on telling us how much they LOVE etsy and it's OMG THE BEST THING EVER!!11 and how we're just a bunch of babies who owe so much to Etsy and how dare we tell them how to run their wonderful, rainbow unicorn cupcake website!

The ass kissing makes me sick sometimes. As do the cheery, smiley replies by admin, treating us like idiots.

Is anyone with over a 100 sales still promoting Etsy? Has anyone noticed most of the stuff there is shit now, and the good sellers are stampeding?

Like the Husband said today, it's a website for amateurs, run by amateurs.

I'm so glad I'm on Big Cartel as well said...

And does anyone else hate the "Thanks for sharing!" bullshit?

impetuous said...

Stinky, a Chief Operating Officer many times has as much pull as a Chief Executive Officer. Sometimes more depending on often the CEO likes to play golf or in this case collect quilts.

The COO should have a handle on every aspect of the business and be overseeing every department. They have the big picture and should certainly be able to formulate (and want to) a way to address the Etsy community with where we are and where we are going.

If Etsy wants to get this train back on the tracks it needs to start by communicating what plans are underway for the future, not just the pie in the sky ideas and fun events.

If she is the kind of professional front Etsy needs, there have no doubt been some very awkward moments in Brooklyn. I would imagine cupcake night seems a little pointless to her, as it should.

Ladies Auxilliary said...

I love it that the topic keeps popping up like a weeble...one thread gets squashed, another pops up! Etsy whack-a-mole!

impetuous said...

3400 says:
"Like the Husband said today, it's a website for amateurs, run by amateurs."
_________

That's the truth of it all.

argh! said...

Well, I, for one, think it's time to stop goofing off and start building other stores on other sites that offer me FREE listing and basic e commerce features.

I'll leave things up for advertisement, but, I think it's time to really start testing other venues.

the stinky one said...

Is it any wonder why there is so much crap on Etsy? Here is just one exampleL http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5680415

I could say more but I don't want to offend anyone here, and I couldn't think of any way to respond to that post that didn't sound mean spirited, but goshamighty, it speaks volumes.

BoroBabe1020 said...

I tried Etsy as an experiment, to see if I could get more customers to add to my existing client base. But how can I advertise my Etsy store when things are so screwed up -- and especially since my own web site was created professionally and cost a TON less to run?

I hope people start looking at places like Pappashop and BigCartel -- tons cheaper, a more professional look, and a lot less worry.

bead fanatic said...

You know what? Etsy *buyers* are tired of being screwed!!! When Etsy screws independent artists, it screws buyers...don't they get this?

Since the "U" fiasco, I've been getting more and more "enlightened" and more and more pissed off.

Heather said...

Since the "U" fiasco, I've been getting more and more "enlightened" and more and more pissed off.

______________________________

What was the "U" fiasco? I don't remember. I do remember April Fools and thinking "wow...WTF".

Also, bigcartel...do they have jewelry sellers? Is there a way to search for JUST jewelry sellers, or is it all lumped under "specality" store? Is there a way to search for a specific shop? The only real "search" I saw was a drop down menu with just a few choices.

impetuous said...

"Since the "U" fiasco, I've been getting more and more "enlightened" and more and more pissed off."
____

If you are talking about the bead reseller I am totally with you on that. It's not so easy to dismiss that issue like so many others we have all over looked. Suppressing that was a big mistake in my opinion.

jen said...

"I think half of us wouldn't be so constantly pissed off if some amateurs with 10 sales didn't keep on telling us how much they LOVE etsy and it's OMG THE BEST THING EVER!!"

This is exactly my problem. You can't have a discussion without some know-it-all dabbler telling top sellers (for lack of a less-obnoxious term) how ungrateful they are. Who are these people? Who is so lacking in self-awareness that they wouldn't realize how foolish they look lecturing on Etsy and business in general to someone with thousands of sales?

Gah. It's my biggest pet peeve on the whole goddamn site. Which is saying something.

Simone said...

As I understand it BigCartel is more like Shopify than Etsy - it's not a mall-like venue as Etsy is, but it provides web-based shopping cart functionality and that's the primary focus. While it does have a place where you can search for BigCartel sellers (as does Shopify), it's not much of a focus as they're all treated like independent shops. That means you have a lot more control over what's going on and your own marketing and branding efforts.

As for everything else above: yes, yes, yes!

bead fanatic said...

Yes, the "U" fiasco I'm referring to is the seller who was buying other artists lampwork beads, then reselling them at Etsy, but telling buyers that *she* made them. She got caught, and Etsy changed the text of the "sold" listings. If you check in the wonderful Etsybitch posts further back, you'll find lots of information.

I had no idea of all the nasty stuff going on behind the scenes at Etsy before all of that happened. It's really opened my eyes; so has this terrific blog.

3400 said...

There's no community on Big Cartel - thankfully :P But if you're trying to bring business in (and you must, if you're on etsy) through advertising and writing to blogs, you might as well use your own shop!

I'm doing really well there, actually - it attracts the non-crafting community (the design and fashion one), and they tend to buy more instead of thinking "I can do that!". Especially now with the how-tos..

Also, no relisting! Stats! No having just one of any item so my customers can buy more that one! Oh, and $20 for the month instead of hundreds of dollars..

SewCrazyDogLady said...

zen cart.. zen cart is your friend.. get zenned...

it's free.. it's relatively easy to customize if you know a little CSS and even if you don't...

All I have left is to add product and I'm golden

SImone said...

Personally I'm much happier paying a fee to use an online cart that I can extensively modify and never need to deal with upgrading myself (which is a big hassle for extensively modified carts you install yourself as chances are you'll have modified files which need to be upgraded later).

I have advanced CSS and XHTML skills as it's part of what I do for a living, but I'd rather put them to use in Shopify than installing a cart and faffing around with endless PHP files. Of course everyone is different, but that's my take on it, having experienced both.

If only Etsy could come remotely close to being as good as some of these cart services in terms of technology and I might feel happy about paying them my (more expensive) bill each month too!

Lucinda, aka Cindy said...

I am glad to see at least my thread (number three) hasn't been locked yet....

I joined in August, started listing the end of Sept and was disillusioned before Thanksgiving with the sudden unveiling of the Gift Guides that really weren't necessary... That made me start to pay attention to *what else* wasn't neccessary amidst the big holes (like search and bleeding and a weird fascination to close down threads over nothing). I am there to sell, or at least to have an online presence that I can direct people to locally. If I see things that might hinder ability to sell on the Etsy platform, I take notice. And I am not shy about speaking up (or having my threads closed). I can just as easily redirect my URL to another platform (or, gasp, actually build it).

I don't see the need for games and fluff when I have to ask my own buyers how they found me....

(Oh, and Stinky, sorry you didn't like my tongue in cheek post on coke can robots. While my kid *did* try to put one together, I sure as hell wouldn't list it on any selling venue. I avoided Ebay all these years to NOT sell in the same place where crap is sold :) But I will do a forum post occassionally that is light and fluffy to try to get more eyes to my shop (and I will help newbies when in the mood, too, shoot me now). "When in Rome" and all that. It was funny to see my thread highlighted in your post LOL)

eclipse said...

I'm not really worried about the tutorials creating more competition, because have you seen the quality of the projects they make? They are along the lines of Bre's jeans repair video. Clueless technique and unwearable result.
Have you seen the quality of items sold in the Etsylabs store? Trailing serger tails left on for the product photos!
But I do think the tutorials will create a lot more newbie shops selling items made with beginner skill levels, and that is just unfair to THOSE sellers. People do not buy those items. They will not become the next Blackapple. They are being sold a dream, Etsy constantly stresses how EASY it is to become an "artist" these days, just pick up photoshop and BAM, you're an artist! No training necessary. It devalues the true artists who are selling on Etsy.

Etsy makes many of these techniques look easy because they skip lots of steps like trimming threads, pressing seams, finishing the insides of items, lining, etc. All the steps which create a quality end product. This doesn't harm me directly because it's not really competition and it's not anything I'd buy, but it does a disservice to the duped sellers and it contributes to the public perception that Etsy is full of amateur cheap crafts projects.
I wish they'd play up the quality and experience of some Etsy shops in their promotion. Feature more fine artists, luxury goods, etc. Etsy has such a wide range of styles and goods available but they mostly play up the "cute", indie, naive, twee aesthetic.
Instead of telling people how easy it is to make the items on Etsy, they should have more features showing how much hard work goes into making the quality items. A more educated buying public will understand pricing better and be willing to pay for quality.

BTW, I fuse plastic and it doesn't really get hot enough to release much fumes. You aren't burning it or even melting it, just softening it. The molecular bonds are not broken so there's not much gas released. No more than using fusible interfacing and probably less than Shrinky Dinks. (judging by smell)

the stinky one said...

my apologies lucinda/cindy, for noting your thread, I didn't know what to say because I wasn't certain because we all know those moms who think their delightful children are so creative, and talented and smart! And really when you look at them and what they do, they are, um, normal kids.

The thing that got me though was the last post I read where some gal's 5 year old nephew is amazing with masking tape and she's almost to the point of convincing his mom to open up a shop for him.

small children and tape....in my house it usually has some form of animal torture involved with a 'mom , look at what the cat is wearing' and then I get clawed to pieces trying to extricate said cat fully intact with all his hair. Not always successful, I might add.

I think it's great that kids want to get involved and make things. My kids made crafty things all the time, the refrigerator was covered with them, and they still sit on bookshelves in their places of honor. Never crossed their mind to sell them. Except for my nephew robert who painted small rocks. With faces. We bought 3.

I don't doubt there are some precocious and talented kids that could probably show up some adult amateurs, but they're still kids whose interests change often and they don't feel the same responsibility to their business that we do to ours.

Ok, I'm rambling. I didn't intend to call your post out for you specifically, I thought the scenario was quite funny, just some of the ideas and support for kids like this to open shops is just not something I think kids should be worrying about at these tender ages.

Lucinda aka Cindy said...

I get ya, Stinky :)

I am dying to go post "My kid just learned felted art using dryer lint! He made the MOST amazing Octupuses out of them!" but even I won't go there LOLOL

Unless bribed....

(BTW, is it a BAD IDEA to have enough info in my name here to tag my shop at Etsy? Just *how* vindictive can Etsy be? I notice most of y'all are using covers...)

the stinky one said...

Someone brought up a good point that I don't think was ever answered in regard to these tutorial nights. The defense for them is that they are trying to reach out to people who don't know about Etsy, to snag them in and hopefully after looking at a tutorial they might cruise the site and buy stuff. Ok, running with that, how are they advertising them? How are they exactly trying to reach those people? Are they placing ads or just hoping a google search might hook a few in?

And then an admin piped up and said that they werent usually full and people left early. Um...ok...boring?....too amateurish? .....Just some Etsy sellers killing some time and hanging out to see what's going on? I don't find that particularly necessary or a good use of time.

eclipse said...

Lucinda not everyone here is anonymous. Etsy reads it, but I guess use your own judgement, I don't think just posting here will get you on the blacklist, it depends what you say. I use my real registered blogger name because I think Etsy pretty much knows where I stand by now, and it makes it impossible for anyone to impersonate me by just typing "eclipse" as an unregistered anonymous name. Well they still could, but it would be obvious it was a phony.
This may sound paranoid but it's happened at UEN, more than once.

ebbandflo said...

i'm also a non-anonymous poster (tho' on occasion i have dabbled when the heat was up on etsy)

that saying, i'm impressed with the OP's here at EB, and also many of the comments .... and i completely understand why anonymity is being used.

it took an unpleasant incident at Etsy to push me into setting up my own URL on business and promotional materials, and since then i've felt a lot less vulnerable

not having etsy as your only selling venue and URL is something i strongly urge to anyone who will listen

bizatch said...

Is it just me or does the new daniellexoxo avi smell like a myspace-i'mfatbuttryingtohideit porno pic? yuck

eclipse said...

fat jokes? seriously?
sigh.

WindysDesigns said...

Meh, I'm already muted indefinitely, which could mean permanently. I don't see how that is really going to change because I'm not going to apologize, beg or otherwise ask to be reinstated myself.

At this point all they can do is close my shop down and frankly, I could give a shit. So why hide?

impetuous said...

I would like to address the anonymity issue here on Etsy Bitch.

I don't think a day goes by in the forums when someone doesn't start in about blacklisting or "unhearting" someone based on what they say. In fact, this very post here on Etsy Bitch has brought that tired old fear right back home to roost.

On the forums, there are many different reasons, under a shop name, that people might say something, or not say something, for that matter. As an anonymous poster here, there can be no mistaking my intent. I am saying what I think and it is quite refreshing to have a place to do that while still discussing Etsy. As you may have noticed, on the forums discussing things openly and critically can be tricky business.

With that said, I have to agree with one thing brought up by Lucinda. People that post things dorky on the forums who's threads are brought here do not have a choice about anonymity.

As I have mentioned before, Etsy Bitch would benefit from "a little more research and objective reporting" but apparently EB feels that is something for the UEN and not for this blog. I guess EB is just prepared to deal with the backlash and those that misinterpret their intent.

the righteous one said...
"I think a little more research and objective reporting would help redirect things."

Nah, you all have UEN for that. We're here to bitch.

And pointing out a thread or statement indicative of something on Etsy is not an intent to attack someone. We try very hard to not say 'hey so and so sucks'.

The Righteous One said...

You DO make a good point Impetuous, but as far as linking to or quoting the Etsy forums, they're public. So what's said is seen by everyone (potentially) anyway.

bizatch...I don't think Danielle's ever had a professional avatar (which I believe is your point), though I don't stalk her profile to see all of them. MaryMary has a nice professional one, HeyMichelle pulls it off too in an unconventional way. Matt had a decent one the last time I saw it, too. RobWhite has tried, but the hat has caused a stir.

yeah you right said...

Eclipse, I have to give you credit for the below sentiments as I 100% agree.These kids dont realize how ridiculous & incredible they look with their last minute DIY tips. Moreover, trying to hoodwink folks into thinking that a few craft supplies and a vintage japanese screenprinter is going to help them quit their day job and live in crafting glory is bordering on criminal.Meanwhile the practical and everyday realities of hard work, following best practices, keeping up with licenses, taxes & all of that good stuff falls to the wayside.And that is what makes a business work, beyond having a great workable idea. But they dont know that yet because, their business isnt working and they keep having to get injections of cash. I'd much rather have the advice of someone who's gone it out on their own without following meaningless"trends" and really understands what a brand means without copying their mother's
1970's yearbook...


****I'm not really worried about the tutorials creating more competition, because have you seen the quality of the projects they make... Clueless technique and unwearable result...Have you seen the quality of items sold in the Etsylabs store? Trailing serger tails left on for the product photos...I do think the tutorials will create a lot more newbie shops selling items made with beginner skill levels, and that is just unfair to THOSE sellers. People do not buy those items. They will not become the next Blackapple. They are being sold a dream, Etsy constantly stresses how EASY it is to become an "artist" these days, just pick up photoshop and BAM, you're an artist! No training necessary. It devalues the true artists who are selling on Etsy...Etsy makes many of these techniques look easy because they skip lots of steps like trimming threads, pressing seams, finishing the insides of items, lining, etc. All the steps which create a quality end product. This doesn't harm me directly because it's not really competition and it's not anything I'd buy, but it does a disservice to the duped sellers and it contributes to the public perception that Etsy is full of amateur cheap crafts projects.
I wish they'd play up the quality and experience of some Etsy shops in their promotion. Feature more fine artists, luxury goods, etc. Etsy has such a wide range of styles and goods available but they mostly play up the "cute", indie, naive, twee aesthetic.
Instead of telling people how easy it is to make the items on Etsy, they should have more features showing how much hard work goes into making the quality items. A more educated buying public will understand pricing better and be willing to pay for quality.***

silver-gwyn said...

Shit ... Danielle is back in the forums? Great. Just great.

That is all.

impetuous said...

the righteous one said...
"You DO make a good point Impetuous, but as far as linking to or quoting the Etsy forums, they're public. So what's said is seen by everyone (potentially) anyway."
______

True. I guess I just prefer the EB posts that are about Etsy and not members.