Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Etsy Day???? Oh No, More Free Labor!?!

Etsy Day and Etsy wants sellers to do MORE work for free!

We are just about knocked out of our (organic, handspun, handmade vegan dye-free) socks when we got a load of this exuberant ditty from none other than DXO:

"The Etsy Forums have united and declared Friday, April 24th, 2009, Etsy Day! Hurrah! We here at Etsy love you for working together to create a really exciting opportunity for us all. We will be reporting the guerilla marketing on Friday and we challenge YOU, buyer, seller or fan, to shout "Etsy!" from the rooftops. Get the Etsy name out there in the brightest, sparkly-est, boldest way you can think of! Make sure to record your efforts with video or photos (if you upload photos to Flickr, making sure to tag them "Etsy Day 2009"). We'll be highlighting the funniest, weirdest, most attention grabbing efforts here on Etsy's Blog and on our social networks (like our Facebook page and Twitter), and we'll make sure to link back to you. "

Etsy did add in it's mindbending dorkie: "The Fine Print: This promotion is being sponsored by independent Etsy shop owners, not We're just excited about it."

We don't really care where the "idea" for Etsy Day came from, it's the whole idea that Etsy is SPONSORING and PROMOTING another push for sellers to do more FREE MARKETING for Etsy without getting ANYTHING BACK is just more of the same. Many sellers have been already marketing Etsy FOR FREE for 4 YEARS already!!!!

Well, doesn’t that just excite that huge, Etsy-loving-fan club that thought this was a good idea? We all know sellers are literally breaking down the doors at Gold Street to offer themselves as free labor for Etsy’s "marketing and advertising" efforts which are based on doing all that work for Etsy FOR FREE!!!

We admit we completely missed this forum campaign to set up an Etsy Day - it kinda got lost in all those hundreds of posts about fixing the shopping cart and doing something about Etsy’s obvious bias and favoritism towards a select group of stores and products.

Oh, but Etsy can’t get bogged down in silly, 3 year old complaints can they? They have much more important things to do like go out of their way to sponsor some wacky and insane Etsy Day that clearly tells sellers that they can do EVEN MORE WORK to promote Etsy FOR FREE!!!!

Now this really clears up what Etsy thinks of its sellers - sellers work FOR ETSY, but Etsy doesn’t work for sellers.

We would have thought an Etsy Day (no matter WHO thought it up) might mean that sellers get something back for doing all this work:


working on my website... said...

Etsy Day! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! giggle, snicker, lol.

Oh my, I think I'll skip this 'holiday'!

teawithfrodo said...

can we have an etsy sucks day?

Building my own website, tired of etsy stupidity said...

yeah no...its too bad that 99.9% of the sellers on etsy are sheep that will eat anything that comes out of DXO's website is almost done

Dragon Lady said...

I'll celebrate this the same way Etsy celebrated St. George's day (which they said in their merchandising plan was on the calender).

But beyond the fact that Etsy wants sellers to do their free marketing, I'd like to know why Etsy thinks that having a group of people whose idea of marketing is posting whiny threads in the forum is an effective marketing strategy.

Look for lots of ridiculously bad press over the next few days. Someone at Etsy knows this, because they felt the need to add their disclaimer to protect their asses.

Anonymous said...

So annoying! I already spend enough advertising Etsy! When are they going to do something for the sellers? Even Ebay gives the sellers cheaper listing days >:(

upsetwithetsy said...

Was wondering why you hadn't posted anything earlier about (gag) Etsy Day.

I almost posted in that thread that there was no way I would participate in that farce and list all the reasons thereof, but I didn't. Too many newbies thinking it was a fabulous idea and I just couldn't bring myself to burst their bubbles. They will find out in due time how thankless Etsy is towards their sellers.

I'll promote myself, thank you. Forget Etsy who forgets so many of us.

I'm confused said...

I would have loved me some free listings!

The "independent Etsy shop owners" sounds too Mary Kay.

inbedwith said...

Clearly showing etsy is in bed with flickr. I thought it was forbidden to tag etsy or any other selling venue in flickr?
I know I had to delete everything, even treasuries screenshots, to avoid to have my flickr deleted.

etsy day. ROTFL. Damn we are excited.NOT.

UnHip said...

I stay out of the sandbox.

The Funny One said...

It's a prelude to the next Etsy-soon-to-be-exposed-formula-for-success. Come up with a half-baked, ridiculous idea, write 2 inane Dorkies about it, edit out all the comments that don't include "Wooohoo" and "Etsy, you are awesome...." to reinforce this Etsy madness, and then you too can be added to Etsy's List Of Favorite Sellers Now Eligible For Promotions on the site.

You get extra points for starting threads that repeat this whole scenario, so those same comments can add 165 pages of woohoos and awesomes and sit back and wait for the sales to come knocking on your door.

You know, sales, money, moola, gee I can pay my bills this month money, that green stuff. Remember those?

Etsy Day, treasury rings, rotating promotions, it's all a big blur, but it all fits into the Etsy Formula For Success Where Sellers Do All the Work For Free and Etsy Takes All The Credit Without Lifting a Fingerless Gloved Finger to give anything back, not one damn thing, to their "awesome seller community".

Gag me with a spoon.

foxaz said...

I'll admit, I've seen the Etsy Day threads in the fora for a month or so. Obviously, at least a few sellers have done a lot of work on this event on behalf of Etsy, for free.
The thing I couldn't understand is why, two days before the event, Etsy decides to embrace Etsy Day and then posts an announcement.

Way to jump on the bandwagon, Etsy.

Rana said...

I thought it was forbidden to tag etsy or any other selling venue in flickr?It is.

Maybe someone should notify flickr.

From their TOS:

Don’t use Flickr for commercial purposes.Flickr is for personal use only. If we find you selling products, services, or yourself through your photostream, we will terminate your account. Any other commercial use of Flickr, Flickr technologies (including APIs, FlickrMail, etc), or Flickr accounts must be approved by Flickr. For more information on leveraging Flickr APIs, please see our Services page. If you have other open questions about commercial usage of Flickr, please feel free to contact us....

Other People (their content, their behavior)You will see all sorts of things on Flickr, some of which may offend you. If you are offended by a photo or video you can either click away or you can mark it as poorly moderated by clicking on the "Flag this photo" link on a photo page under “Additional Information”. If you think there's immediate cause for concern, you can report content and/or someone's behavior to Flickr staff via the “Report Abuse” link that’s available in the footer of every page.

locks-a-lordy said...

Right. On. This is one of the most insulting things Etsy's done (this year). I've gotten jaded enough to shrug at most of the crap, but seeing that post actually made me kind of angry.

Why in the world would I spend my time, money, and effort to give Etsy the Site free advertising? I need all of that to promote MY shop, you know, the thing that makes money? I already pay Etsy listing and sale fees; let them pay for their own advertising.

Jen Segrest (verybigjen) said...

I saw a staff member say in thier forums when I researcheed this that you CAN tag your photos with "etsy", but you CANNOT put your etsy store URL, or a website url with a store link on it, ON YOUR DESCRIPTIONS or tags.

You can only put commercial links in your profile - and you can only use ONE.

Lovin' me some Etsy Bitch said...

Yeah, I love that I'm supposed to waste time, energy, money & any other resources I have all to promote ETSY. Not MY shop, but TEAM E-T-S-Y. Let me start doing cartwheels. What. The. F*ck. Ever. The more dumb shit they email and Dorque about in the name of Team Etsy , the more they motivate me to look into creating my own site.

justbitchy said...

Great analogy.

Mary Kay, Amway, Avon, and now Etsy.

Clueless cheerleaders jumping on the bandwagon.

I get etsy spam emails from stalker etsy sellers on my independent website asking me to re-sell their products on my website.

Irony at it's best!

Can't move enough on Etsy? Spam sellers with independent websites.

Pay too much in fees renewing and you can barely break even? Spam sellers with independent websites.

Hate resellers on etsy? Spam sellers with independent websites so YOU can sell to a RESELLER!

Reselling is apparently just fine as long as it's not on etsy.

F-ing morons.

There's even a thread about spamming Oprah and Ellen! Yay! Let's all act like clueless freaks and stalkers on the same day and scare every last person away. Great idea!

I can't even begin to fathom any of this evangelical following.

There really is a sucker born every minute.

forum rubbernecker said...

There's even a thread about spamming Oprah and Ellen! Yay! Let's all act like clueless freaks and stalkers on the same day and scare every last person away. Great idea!
Clueless and classless! WTF?!! Don't people have any brains at all?

erasure said...

All I know, is when people email me to know where they can find my products, I send them straight to my shop, not to the Etsy FP.
And that on the off-chance this Etsy day thing works, I'll be adding new work to my shop all day on Saturday, just in case.
Who knows, maybe I'll get on the scroll?

Rana said...

You know, it just occurred to me that this isn't just about sellers cluelessly promoting their venue for free.

It's also this:

Why would I put in my time and effort and money to promote my business competitors?

Because, really, that's what everyone seems to be getting excited about doing.

I can sort of see this for Teams, where there's at least a bit of "we're in this together to make the Etsy site work for us" - but this kind of global promotion of Etsy at the expense of one's own shop is really stupid.

Which is the better use of my time and money: bringing people to my shop, or bringing people to the mall in the hopes that they'll visit my shop, which is one out of thousands?

I mean, really. And people are excited about this?

I swear; it's like a cult or something - people's critical thinking skills go right out the window.

Brass Monkey Designs said...

Yeah, I got an email from someone about this and the only response it got from me was:

*eye roll*
*send to trash*

I will celebrate Etsy the exact same way it celebrates Brass Monkey Original Artisan Jewelry.

Linda said...

This is such a typical Etsy interpretation of "marketing plan."

Here's what Etsy's marketing specialists are doing for us:

"DaniellesDesigns says:
I go to school at Anoka Ramsey Community College in Minnesota and in all of our bathrooms there are writing boards so that kids don't write on the walls. Tomorrow I'm going to write on every board(the ones in the girls bathrooms anyway): Happy Etsy Day! Buy handmade at! I'm pretty sure almost everyone goes to the bathroom, so hopefully some people will come check etsy out!"

I can't possibly see how an influx of community college kids who learned about Etsy from a bathroom wall is going to help anyone sell anything. We'll sell squat! ;p

Etsy - PLEASE hire a real marketing manager...PLEASE!!!??

Night Sky Jewelry said...

I have started to promote my ArtFire shop and have been neglecting my Etsy shop. ArtFire is far from perfect (still pretty buggie in some areas) but they work hard, and I feel like the work hard for US.

I also have a website that is awful, but I'm starting the process of revamping it so I won't be embarrassed to send people there.

I'm fed up with Etsy. Our new listings land on the FP for what, 5 seconds now? My views have dropped dramatically since they started that crap.

I can't afford to relist everything everyday, which I didn't even know people were doing until lately.

I'm sick of the all the resellers and the junk that isn't artsie or craftie, it's just junk.

Unless I spend hours in the forums, my views and sales drop. I don't have hours to spend in the forums, I need those hours to actually make jewelry.

Lee said...

After reading many comments about Etsy and how they don't reward their Sellers (note the capital 'S') for all of the time and hard work they put in, I can see how people would get discouraged.

I'm using this blog to do a plug on a company that I co-founded, called I think it's great that you all come together and discuss issues with Etsy's service that isn't quite 'up to par'. At we are determined to create a service that is made FOR the Sellers, and with that comes constant recognition and incentives.

We at are listening, and if you have any questions or comments on how we can create the best service out there, please feel free to let us know at, or visit

Thanks, and we look forward to hearing from you!

inbedwith said...

They are all over twitter today doing their brainwashing propaganda. It is a shame.

Re flickr: the very owner of flickr told me so, and monitored me a whole afternoon to "help" me erase every little bit of selling information.
They will delete my flickr if I let "etsy" tags anywhere.
I am allowed one link in my profile. Period.

This occured after I said it was about time I ended up on the fp after the hundreds of treasuries my work has been in. The admin who put me on the fp saw the comment and complained to flickr (I was not greateful enough and there is even more to the story but I won't write a novel).

So this is how they get you by the balls. Your own website? Good luck because to drive enough traffic to it in order to sell, it will take you months if not years and a lot of money as well.

Free labor for them? I don't have stockholm syndrom nor am I that much into BDSM.

life-during-wartime said...

I don't think DaniellesDesigns took her concept far enough.

Etsy should push to dominate the collegiate women's bathroom demographic, and go for toilet tissue printed with EtsyDOTcom and the orange logo.

The Righteous One said...

lol life-during-wartime, so we can all wipe our asses with Etsy!

I love it!!

crankbunny said...

I'm starting to think this site is a plant made by Etsy as a marketing tactic.

Was this thing started by Matt? If so, kudos to you, it's brilliant! By filling a hate site with inane comments, they've single-handedly taken the wind out of any real hate sites that might pop up. :D

working on my website... said...

Thank god I follow people on twitter with other interests or all I would have in my feed is '#etsy day, yeah' tweets.

Rana said...

Good luck because to drive enough traffic to it in order to sell, it will take you months if not years and a lot of money as well.Not necessarily.

Here's the facts in my situation, comparing my three shops:

My shop at Etsy, which went online in October and closed in March (so open 5 months);

My shop at ArtFire, which opened in February (so open 2 months);

My gallery at Zenfolio, which opened in January (so open 3 months).

Visitor counts this year to date for each?

Etsy: 597 (no ads); 50% new visitors; average 1.93 page views per visitor

ArtFire: 290 (no ads); 65% new visitors; average 1.53 page views per visitor

Zenfolio: 1,089 (with $30 of ads); 89% new visitors; average 8.55 page views per visitor

So in three months, with advertising, I have nearly doubled my visitors overall, and increased my page views on Zenfolio by over 800% compared to that on the other two sites. Moreover, because more people are looking at more things, I'm far more likely to make a sale than I was at Etsy, where people looked at one thing, and then left.

It's also worth noting that while I did get about twice as many hits on Etsy as I did on ArtFire, I made no more sales on Etsy during that time. Etsy has also been getting itself out in the public eye far more than ArtFire this year, so it's pretty clear to me that Etsy's marketing efforts do diddly for my own sales.

Advertising your own shop is not as expensive as you think it is, and if you choose your venues carefully, it's definitely worth it.

And it's a big fat myth that you need to be on a site like Etsy in order to bring in customers. In fact, being on Etsy may reduce your visibility, because you are fighting for attention with a large number of other sellers. Moreover, just because people are interested in what's on the FP, doesn't mean that they'll be interested in your shop, unless you are tailoring your work to the Etsy "look."

If you're an independent artist, you're far better off marketing yourself - and Etsy doesn't help you do that.

Get yourself a test site, add Google Analytics to it, and try advertising it for a month. Then compare that to what happened during that month to your shop on Etsy. You might be surprised.

All Wired Up TOO said...

I wondered what the hell #etsyday meant on Twitter~ GAG!

The Funny One said...

Twitter is aflitter with a lot of blocking today because the Etsy Day tweets have gotten to be as obnoxious as the Etsy Admin who put her name on the top of this half-baked and snide endorsement (that they were quick to say was NOT their idea).

Now Etsy can brand "obnoxious" as its official sub-trademark and laugh all the way to their next paycheck about the reputations of real, quality handmade that they are pide-pipering down the drain.

Let the post-PR-disaster sniping, blaming, and flaming on the forums begin!

Old Hippie Bitch said...

My reactions to Etsy Day:

1) Etsy's like a 45 year old guy who still wears his baseball cap backwards. Grow up already!

2) Today is actually a nice, quaint U.S. holiday. Arbor Day.

3) Shout etsy from the rooftops? Yeah, we did that 3 1/2 years ago. Look what it got us.

4) Sucker born every minute.

April said...

it would be better instead of getting a whole bunch of people to join, to have a mass exodus.

justbitchy said...

When will sellers wake up?

First, why would anyone advertise the URL instead of their own etsy store URL or their own website? That makes no sense. As some mentioned earlier, you are simply bringing people into the front door to buy from your competition.

Clueless and naive etsy sellers are caught in an endless feedback loop of badgering each other, following each other, favoriting each other, hearting each other and then buying from each other thereby recycling the same dollars instead of finding buyers outside the endless feedback loop.

Interesting to know there was some twitter blocking (is that like cock blocking?) fall out over this.

F-ing freaks.

stimp said...

These people are seriously deranged. HOW can they think we will promote them when they NEVER promote US??? If I wasn't laughing I'd be crying. Oh, wait, I am.

you make me yawn said...

funny... i had ZERO sales today which knocks down my daily average of 9. wtf?!?

justbitchy said...

Rana says:

And it's a big fat myth that you need to be on a site like Etsy in order to bring in customers. In fact, being on Etsy may reduce your visibility, because you are fighting for attention with a large number of other sellers. Moreover, just because people are interested in what's on the FP, doesn't mean that they'll be interested in your shop, unless you are tailoring your work to the Etsy "look."

If you're an independent artist, you're far better off marketing yourself - and Etsy doesn't help you do that.


I support myself with my website. I still use eBay a bit, but only a fraction of my regular product line.

I tried the same product line on etsy and next to nothing moved.

I started on a site like Etsy years ago and wasted a lot of time and money, just like many Etsy sellers are.

One day there was a turn of events on that site. I realized what a mistake it had been to advertise anything other than my own website. It was like a punch in the gut.

So many people will one day learn the hard way.

And, Etsy has become a bit of a joke. Some gallery owns will not deal with artists or artisans who list on Etsy because of pricing issues and the fact that it's seen as slumming.

You need to guard your reputation.

You need to build your own business.

EtsyQuitStealingIdeas said...

A friend told me that Etsy kicked off Etsy Day at midnight last night (pst) by stealing items from several treasuries-11 out of 12- to make a "found browsing through Etsy's categories" FP. They took 2 from one treasury and 9 from various other treasuries. She figured it out because she had seen the 2 in the same treasury, and then checked all the other items, and sure enough, all in treasuries..... Way to celebrate someone else's work! It's just like high school, where the pretty cheerleader cheats and everyone is fine with it, because, well, she needs the extra help.....

buddy said...

I will never understand how so many sellers adopt Etsy as their benign employer, as if they are climbing the Etsy corporate ladder in a 1950's hallucination, and promote their misguided idea of an Etsy company that they are some integral part of.

Are these all people living on compounds? Or housewives desperately trying to identify themselves with a professional career identity? Or lost college grads seeking a Big Brother? What is this rabid Clan mentality?

Whatever it is, Etsy is perhaps just brilliant for recognizing it and exploiting it to the Nth degree. But more likely, these ding dong Admins are in that lemming group, thus they perpetuate it without knowing how effective they are.

ICanScrewBack said...

Whatever it is, Etsy is perhaps just brilliant for recognizing it and exploiting it to the Nth degree.
it is possible to exploit Etsy to some degree and use them for your purposes. ;)

justbitchy said...

buddy, my dad calls people like you describe "butt sniffers."

EtsyWTF said...

Now that Etsy Day is passed, can we PLEASE focus on ETC DAY now?

Be sure to put Etc Day, 1 May 2009, on your calendars!!!!

By the by, I don't actually endorse this, I'm just really excited about it.

Rana said...

I am now officially off Etsy - I got my account closure email today.

It's been fun hanging out here, but I'm leaving all things Etsy behind - have fun!

May you continue to bring enlightenment and support (with a healthy dose of sarcasm and rudeness :) ) to other people who have fallen out of love with Etsy.

Bye! Come see me (as sungazer) on ArtFire or Zenfolio sometime!

So Glad I Left Etsy said...

When I had to start buying ads to make sales on Etsy I knew it had become a suckers venue. If I have to promote for them, it makes no sense for me to sell there.

Promote for yourself, make sales for yourself. This is business - not high school football. Cheerleaders shouldn't be required to make a few bucks.

the frustrated one said...

I read the etsy day forum posts, I didn't know etsy actually go out and endorse it but said like, nothing about it, then when they know it might turn out to be a great opportunity, they jump on the ship. When being yelled at, they say it's someone's else idea, not

I also question, why, etsy admins, that's their employee, can open a shop there. They will definitely have so many benefits that a normal sellers don't have.

When you enter a public contest hosted by any company, they always have the clause say that company employee and their family are not allowed to participate. This logic should also be applied to the etsy employees. The etsy admins not only open one shop there, but like several shops per admin.

This not high school, it's company. Even in high school, you'd have the sense that if there's something that's so very obviously unfair, you won't air that in the public, you'd try to do that, but with more discreet of sort. But yet, the etsy admins are promoting their shop every chance they got.

That and that alone, should make people mad. Not to mention all the other stupid things they do should make people mad.

I actually hope they get bought by some huge company which will come in and do a firing spree.

Himawari said...

The "Etsy Day" is the dumbest idea that seller could have had.

Honestly, I wasn´t going to spend all my hard working day for these guys, like they are paying me for it. I have to pay the fees to sell at Etsy, why the hell do I have to promote their lazy asses??!

buddy said...

OMG. Read the 3rd comment posted on this article on HuffPost:

It's an article about Twitter. This commenter says:

"It's a nice service if you stay away from the name-collectors and spammers (and whatever you do, avoid the Etsy sellers - they spam like crazy!!)"

Way to go w/the marketing, Etsy!

justbitchy said...

but, but, but....Etsy spam is different! Completely different! It is! Really! It's different!

It's handmade spam!

Handmade with OCD LUV!!!!

Of course, admin says we can't spam the Etsy forums, but they said it was fine to spam everywhere on long as we didn't say "Etsy Sent Us."

Get it? It's different!!!!!! Not kidding!! It's different!!!!!

You just don't understand...


Himawari said...

Yeah, totally different spam... *rolling eyes*


Filled with Glee said...

No more cat in the hat stirring up trouble. Is that for real?

Everyone sing-
Oh Happy Day, Oh Happy Day. . . .