Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Etsy Never Learns

I apologize we haven't had the time to get to this topic earlier this week, but surprisingly our lives don't always revolve around Etsy and their nearly continually occurring social atrocities but we've been chewing over what to say for a few days so here we go...

This weekend Etsy posted a Dorque article from a Guest named Temple St. Clair on the apparent immorality of coral. And the sellers went insane with rage over this, decrying you can buy coral and coral items on Etsy, and that no sister article accompanied it to inform about more "ethical" and entirely legal means for coral. It was even accompanied by a link to the sellers own *OFF SITE* website where she boats selling her pieces at Macy's and Barney's other upscale retailers which of course brought on cries that the writer should not have been given space at all, or that her status as a non-etsy seller gaves her somehow more authority and Etsy is promoting someone obviously in need of no promotion. Not to mention the request for readers to sign a pledge to not buy coral... on a site that sells coral.

While Etsy seems to want to be the New York Times and offer up challenging informative articles in the Dorque they can never pull off doing it right. They can't even comprehend how to present these issue articles, some of which can be very important information that should be shared, to a creative community of makers and sellers without it coming off as a slapdown as they currently make no distinction that the articles are in anyway are not "sanctioned" by Etsy but instead of a guest viewpoint. This is where they spin off the tracks of logic.

When media outlets allow non-staff to post articles on, they are called "Guest Editorials" or the like. (Even we make it clear when we post a article written by someone other than us with our "Ladies Auxillary" postings.) Most large outlets usually have a short bio next to a by line picture at the front or end of the piece making clear that the writer is a guest contributor and NOT with the venue, and her view points are her/his own. This is a long established way to do this, you barely have to even pay attention to notice that's how things are done. That's the problem, Etsy doesn't notice anything without a mustache attached to it and had they simply conformed to this one little convention this all might have been avoided. But then convention has always been too conventional for Etsy even though most of the time there is a damned good reason for it.

When an article by a successful off-Etsy jewlery designer is featured such as this you give them a great deal of authority. An authority that may or may not be deserved, that is why sometimes outlets will also offer a countering article with the other side, in this case one about legal and ethical coral, and coral alternatives would have been extremely appropriate and welcomed I think, but then the writer of that might not be some fancy pants designer that someone at Etsy peed their pants over getting an email from.

Of course, since this implosion the forums have been on fire, even the ideas forum is filling up with seller disgust, and moderators are busy shutting down topics as fast as they open, or shoving them into Etc or the like. They are scrambling to cover it all up like a handknitted cozy for a heating duct. The one thing you can consistently say about etsy is they don't take well to criticism in anyway. I'm expecting more mutings and banning this week to remind us all that Etsy is never wrong.


Plain and simple, I call bullshit on the "Pay to Play" shenanigans. This article and Etsy's endorsement of the petition St. Claire (really, what kind of fucking hipster name is that?!) was panhandling, is appalling at the least, and well at the most, I think all coral sellers should move to where they feel welcome because Etsy really doesn't give a damn about you or that you are receiving harassing posts from stupid fucking Cupcakes.

Do with it as you will, but once again, Etsy has proven that they're nothing more than brainless Hipster twits.

Response from admin in Announcements has been:
"Etsy Admin
julietgo says:
Hi everyone,

I'm Etsy's editorial director and I want you to know that I and all the blog editors have been carefully reading and discussing your feedback on the coral preservation article. Our aim in publishing this blog post was to raise awareness and provoke reflection about an under-recognized issue. It was absolutely not our intention to call out or cast a negative light on any Etsy seller. We come to work every day trying to build a better business for you, truly! So to anyone who felt unwelcome, my apologies. Our policies about what can be sold on Etsy are unchanged.

To clarify regarding questions that have been raised about our editorial policies, there is no "pay for play" on Etsy. No one can purchase editorial coverage.

Best,
Juliet"


This has since been further updated under the above:

Hello everyone,

I’m back to clarify a few things about our editorial policies.

First of all, I want to reiterate that there is no "pay for play" on Etsy’s blog. Some members have been wondering about contracts and terms of agreement between us and outside contributors. Etsy does not accept payment in exchange for editorial coverage, not in this case and not ever.

Your feedback on the coral article has made us recognize the need to clarify our internal guidelines on publishing opinions. We didn’t sufficiently vet the point of view to make sure it complied with Etsy's broader policies. (Coral is not a prohibited item on Etsy. Each seller does need to ensure that his or her use of the site complies with all applicable laws; that includes any regulations or restrictions for the sale of coral. Beyond the legal issues, however, Etsy members are responsible for making important moral or ethical decisions regarding what they buy and sell.) We also should have better anticipated the countervailing view. And if we still wanted to address the subject, we should have sought to introduce more balance and clearly labeled it as opinion, which reflects the point of view of its author and not Etsy as a company. You’ll see the results of our toothier internal guidelines in our future coverage.

Lastly, I’d like to step back from the specific content of this debate to make a general point about contributors to our blog who are new members of Etsy. We have a long history of featuring guests. They bring our community into conversation with the wider world, spark new ideas and by driving their audience to the blog, help raise awareness of Etsy with people who are not yet familiar with us. I understand why many of you were frustrated by this particular instance of a contribution by someone without long standing in the community. But I want to be clear that broadly speaking, a contributor’s history (or lack of) with Etsy is not a factor in whether we collaborate with them. The decision generally lies in whether the ideas they want to share are substantive and relevant to our readers.

We greatly appreciate the constructive feedback, as it will help us do better by you next time.

Best,
Juliet


129 Comments:

Eveline said...

In the forum you're not allowed to talk about sellers in a negative light, this is considered calling out and will get your thread closed. Now Admin allowed for an article to be posted in the Storque that calls out sellers as well. Double standards much? Not to mention the link to an off-site website where the writer of said article sells her own stuff.

Just really bad form on Etsy's part. But then again, are we really surprised.

ATempleNotToBeWorshipped said...

I would like to know where Temple St. Clair outsources to. I am going to guess it's not somewhere that respects the environment. I also wish the article had at least mentioned in passing that there actually are ethical sources of coral.

Anonymous said...

The sad part is that nothing changes... even those who have been defamed will continue to list and renew because they feel they have no choice due to Etsys traffic. If all of these affected sellers from all of Etsy's issues would stop thinking 'this is just typical Etsy' and make a decisive move to another venue, the traffic would move also. Etsy is a bad venue, and seller products are the selling point, not Etsy's fabulously bad approaches to 'social commerce.'

Until the affected sellers from all of these issues finally realise it is THEY who allow Etsy to continue treating them like an abused spouse and leave, there is no incentive for Etsy to change.

Well... maybe an actually filed lawsuit that would make the investors take notice....

Anonymous said...

Sandahl here...

This is one time I wish sellers would get together and force Etsy's hand!

One Who's Already Closed Shop said...

Etsy continues to be the abusive spouse in a relationship where sellers bark is louder than their bite. Etsy has no incentive to change as long as sellers continue to hold the attitude that 'they should leave a presence on Etsy' despite how Etsy regularly beats them, be it in favoritism to others, badly implemented (and thus faulty) tools, never addressing real problems such as search, false promises such as syndication, and now defamation of a large group of sellers and suppliers.

What sellers seem to fail to realise is that it's they themselves that promote this type of behavior. How? By never taking the decisive action to move away and end the relationship with Etsy. Whether it be Artfire, Big Cartel or another venue, it seems the majority of sellers agree that other venues offer more of what the sellers need, save for the traffic. Well, guess what? Traffic moves to where the sellers are and partial presences mean nothing other than a dilution of traffic to multiple venues, with the most prominent being the one where they retain their 'partial presence' despite the issues.

So really - it's time to take a decisive action. Maybe even two. Move your items, stop promoting Etsy and if you really do feel you have been defamed, do as one thread talks about and look to a lawsuit. Sellers - Etsy considers respect a one-way street, and that street isn't heading in your direction. They built their business on your backs so if you all stop griping and go, it's going to have an impact.

Be decisive. Take your power back.

Gypsy Moon Designs said...

Thanks for the post! As an Etsy seller I am pissed!

F.W. said...

What? A site like Etsy caught in a Payola scheme? Etsy would do such a thing like only picking the same few sellers for their FP over and over? I'm shocked, I tell you, shocked.
Next thing you know, the Storque will be featuring some subsidiary who works for Crate and Barrel in the form of a concerned off Etsy seller named "Portico Von Appleberry" who will circulate a petition against lead in the pumpkin colored glaze used on deer figurines. Can't wait for that one.

douche said...

Another non-apology, no-fix, and no- responsibility response from another in the long line of etsy employees who apparently are underqualified for their jobs.

Gee! Sorry! Oh well! Don't call out! We'll talk about it! IT's in the pipe line?
BSBSSBSSBSSBSBSBSBSBSSSBS

Take the article down, and say you SCREWED UP. THAT IS WHAT ADULTS DO.

Amenhotep IV said...

Just some of the problems I have with this:

--Off-Etsy commercial jewelry designer deriding legal products offered for sale ON Etsy

--Off-Etsy commercial jewelry designer advertising her own retail website through the article AND on her own non-seller Etsy ID, created the same day as the article. Other shops have been SHUT DOWN for having off-Etsy links in their profiles, even with the 2-click rule.

--Commercial jeweler sells through big, major corporations. Nothing handmade, sustainable, or "homey" about that.

--Jewelry designer uses diamonds, a huge source of issues in the world of fair trade and mining.

--Non-Etsy jeweler rallies readers to boycott and sign a pledge NOT to buy coral.

--Article calls out hordes of Etsy jewelery, vintage, and supply sellers, with no punishment for the calling-out.

--Similar topics about problem items like coral, ivory, diamonds shut down quickly in the forums to avoid calling out. Not the blog, though.

--Etsy blog says it does not accept any new article proposals, yet Temple was approached to write one, indicating Etsy went out of its way to specifically get her on board.

--Comments were locked on the blog post after the cupcakes were replaced by people demanding action be taken.

--No discourse was offered to highlight the fact that coral IS legal and to recognize legal coral gathering, legitimate coral sources, antique coral, or actual regulations and rules. Coral is NOT illegal and there is such a thing as ethical collection. Only some methods and locations have been made illegal and most of the beads on Etsy are from legit sources. The antique coral is exempt.

--The article is sensationalist and does not educate buyers in regards to legitimate coral, or reasons for preserving antique coral.

--The blog article is still up, encouraging people to boycott.

--Etsy shuts down threads left and right, or moves them to Ideas or Etc, if they refer to the Coral fiasco.

sark said...

So, I looked at Temple St. Clair's shitty jewelry. It's derivative and redundant looking. Plus, it's all gold, so it's not for me.

Considering that it's massed produced and googling her name brings up the fact that her stuff is sold at Target which is just one step above Walmart, what the fuck am I supposed to think. I buy most of my jewelry from hippies at art fairs of JC Penny's.

Etsy's blog is idiotic. I will personally admit that I don't really care about coral. I don't hate coral the living organism or the dead thing that jewelry is made out of, but geeze, I really just don't fucking care.

Until my shit is plastered all over the front page, the finds, or the storque, it's all pretty useless.

Featuring an editorial from someone that doesn't have an account on the site that espouses boycotting etsy sellers is just fucking stupid.

I'm not a god damned vegan, I'm not a vegetarian. Fuck, I even use plastic bags from the grocery store. I shop at Walmart (although I seem to be buying less crap). I work full time, I pay the bills... coral as a material being ethical or unethical is so far out of the periphery of the shit that I actually care about that it isn't really even funny.

And yet, that disconnect seems to sum up the entire etsy experience.

If it was more clever this situation with the Storque article and the community reaction would be like a snake eating its own tail, but it isn't. Etsy is more like a mentally challenged dog sitting in a carrier cage eating its own shit.

thisshtisbananas said...

Closed my shop last week on Etsy. Sick of renewing just to get views from actual buyers and not SELLERS! The FP issue is really annoying and I don't feel like constantly making new seller buddies to add me in "treasuries" instead of bringing in actual buyers, ugh. Was kinda hard to close the shop with all of the time I've spent networking for the last year... all those hours for penny's and maybe even less. Sucks I just missed the boat on that 5.95 on Artfire. Ebay is offering free first 100 listings per month until January 7th. For some reason, Cargoh, btw, sent me an email saying that they could not let me sell there for now? Uh, not like a big deal, but I think the favor was coming from me, not them!

notthatmartha said...

Etsy cannot take the article down nor offer a real apology for fucking up once again.

Why not?

They solicited Temple. They invited her. She did not approach etsy. She doesn't need etsy. She's the Martha Stewart of the jewelry world, from Target to Barney's.

Wonder how many 3rd world kids she employes to make her line for Target?

Oh, and that idiot blog editor, Juliet. Have you ever seen anyone more passive aggressive? I mean outside of etsy.

SteeredAway said...

Quid Pro Quo does not always involve money per se. Etsy greases hands in lots of ways: magazines are one of their faves. No sense in paying for an ad when you can made a deal with the reporter.

This FUBAR is an indication of what has been going on for some time: blog articles are written by unqualified people and are NOT PROOFED. If they are proofed, then there isn't one professional on the entire Etsy staff because somebody should have picked up on all the blatant fuckups.

If etsy knows what it wants, it's surely an obscure goal. My feeling is that there is no goal other than the little writer to get the job done and get paid. You don't become a pro because you are paid, you are a pro because you KNOW WHAT THE FUCK YOU ARE DOING.

Broom pushers. That's all they are.

headdesk2 said...

I'm not easily shocked, but etsy's canned response by that moronic blog editor stunned me.

She saw all thouse reasonable questions in the forums and just said, fuck you. Rob must love a bitch like her.

Pro said...

PARAPHRASED:

Hello!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WElcome to this wonderful community of artists who we think are pretty well below our standards for intelligence. Of course, none of us who work here have any experience but other people say we are cool so we must be better than the fools who throw their money on listings here.

The spirit of this post was to educate the people who make jewelry, because they are too clueless to be aware of this very issue, even though it has been common knowledge for decades. Like, before we were born.
Plus, we hoped to provoke some of our sellers into a rage. This is one person’s point of view - an artist who has her jewelry manufactured and doesn't even sell it on Etsy. It was not Etsy's intention to suggest that others are not doing the right thing when choosing certain materials for their art or craft, we are just too stupid for that to even occur to us. Besides, we like to fuck with our customers and we are on a deadline.

Thank you all for sharing your ideas. We never pay any attention to them, but it does make us feel important. The range of opinions expressed here is proof that we insulted a huge diverse group of people who actually give us money. We’ll close the comments now, so that we staff are not further humiliated by having our severe deficiencies pointed out over and over and over.

Love,
Another Etsy STaff Asshole.

communitymember said...

I totally agree with One Who's Already Closed Shop, and sellers: it really IS about taking your power back. Etsy would be nothing without your talents. It's true that there aren't any other venues with Etsy's traffic (at least not yet) but there are others that treat their sellers better, provide better tools and take up far less of your time, energy and money. And there's always the option of starting your own site.

Some people are responding to this latest fiasco by offering Etsy free blog writing services: http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6658946&page=1. Well-intentioned and I'm sure sellers would get some exposure from doing so. But I can't help picturing some poor bruised and battered woman begging her lying, cheating man to just allow her to cook his favorite meal for him. Like allowing her to do so would make up for the fact that he's just beaten her and cheated with the rich lady down the street.

Sorry, but I'm NOT willing to help Etsy by offering free services. That would just be rewarding bad behavior. They don't deserve my help.

JunkMostWondrous said...

Etsy Corporate is clearly at fault here (as usual), however, one problem is that many community members can't see past the end of their own noses. Although to be fair, there is a considerable amount of outcry from non-coral sellers (myself included), many other sellers are telling the complainers to shut it and accusing people of hysteria. What these people don't realize is that this and other Etsy fuck-ups have implications for the entire community and the future of the site. The soap seller who doesn't give a fuck today will be crying the loudest tomorrow when it's his or her product that's being shit on by the same people that seller is PAYING.

This incident, coming on the heels of the security issues & numerous other problems, was the last in a series of nails in my Etsy coffin. I'm tired of paying incompetent hipster douchebags for a service they aren't even fully providing. How long would you keep paying your cable bill if your 10 favorite channels stopped coming in?

YaYa said...

Am I the only one that thinks it's odd that there are 120 "great article" comments before there is 1 single negative comment??

Violets new Vintage said...

I noticed that some people did remove all items from their shops and left a message on their banners saying it was the coral article and E's inadequate response to sellers that caused them to leave.

P.A.T. said...

I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it any more!

Etsy's ridiculous, monumental fuck-ups have been coming one after another for so long now that I feel like I'm gonna explode from the stress of it.

The non-apology letter was the last fucking straw and what it really comes down to is I cannot remain at Etsy and have any self respect at all.

I'm packing my bags and moving (two shops) and it will be like a ten ton weight off me!
I'll be slamming the door on my way out and I will not be back even to visit.

communitymember said...

Sellers: support the handmade revolution. Close down your Etsy shop.

WindysDesigns said...

Haha!!! Pro, that was brilliant.

Aside from the problems mentioned already, it really disturbs me that someone representing an extreme environmental viewpoint is given the platform to spew their one sided propaganda.

This smacks to me of some wannabe 'famous' person jumping on the latest bandwagon without knowing anything about the issue and just spouting off hearsay and innuendo. It puts her in a class of famous jewelers who have espoused this issue.

But like any issue, there is always more to it. The coral issue is a very real one. However, global warming, pollution and over fishing are more detrimental than the jewelry trade.

The effects of diminishing coral reefs is also very real, but it would be irresponsible not to look at all the uses of coral before jumping on a boycott wagon of only a fraction of the usage.

Did you know that coral is also used in the following ways?

• Mining for Construction. In East Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific, corals are mined for limestone and construction materials. Sometimes coral pieces are removed for use as bricks or road-fill. Sand and limestone from coral reefs are also made into cement for new buildings. According to a 1995 study, 20,000 cubic meters of coral
per year were collected in the Maldives solely for construction materials (Brown, 1995).

• Mining for Calcium. Dead coral is harvested for calcium supplements.

• Harvesting for souvenirs/Jewelry. Coral species are used in the dried ornamental trade business, collected and
traded for souvenirs and jewelry. Coral curios and jewelry are often sold to tourists and exporters.

• Harvesting for Marine Aquaria. Live coral is collected for the marine aquarium industry and public aquaria.

• Harvesting for Medical Use. Researchers have been using coral for bone graph clinical trials and imports of coral for medical purposes increased 500% from 1991 to 1992 (Fenical, 1996).

Italy is considered the center of coral jewelry creation, and Torre del Greco, near Naples, is where the best coral jewelry in Italy is made. There are 100 local divers licensed to collect coral, and they have to dive to 80 meters, at which point they can only stay down for 4 minutes.

These people have lived off their coral for two millenia, it's kind of hard to imagine that they would deplete the very material that has sustained them for so long.

I could go on. Google 'coral mining' and read for yourself. While the environmental impact is definitely real, it is highly questionable that the boycotting of coral beads and jewelry will have any more impact than choosing to become vegan has had on the beef and leather trades.

Raising awareness isn't pushing one side's agenda, it's educating the public by providing facts on all sides.

Sick of Idiots said...

This is the ugliest one yet Etsy. Etsy you cannot even offer a site that functions. What makes you think you can provide editorial comment on subjects of which you have zero knowledge?

Does your editor know nothing of responsible ethical reporting? Where the hell was your legal team? Did they review this crap before it was published?

Seems if you are reporting on what you claim to be a responsible and ethical issue, you should do so responsibly and with ethics.

And, what about the morality of endorsing a sweat shop jewelry company that does not sell on Etsy and allowing her to defame the reputations of sellers who pay you big bucks?

Somehow Etsy has managed to avoid lawsuits for stomping on its sellers in the past but I think this time Etsy has drawn blood on the hand that feeds it and retribution will be costly.

WindysDesigns said...

Haha!!! Pro, that was brilliant.

Aside from the problems mentioned already, it really disturbs me that someone representing an extreme environmental viewpoint is given the platform to spew their one sided propaganda.

This smacks to me of some wannabe 'famous' person jumping on the latest bandwagon without knowing anything about the issue and just spouting off hearsay and innuendo. It puts her in a class of famous jewelers who have espoused this issue.

But like any issue, there is always more to it. The coral issue is a very real one. However, global warming, pollution and over fishing are more detrimental than the jewelry trade.

The effects of diminishing coral reefs is also very real, but it would be irresponsible not to look at all the uses of coral before jumping on a boycott wagon of only a fraction of the usage.

Did you know that coral is also used in the following ways?

• Mining for Construction. In East Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific, corals are mined for limestone and construction materials. Sometimes coral pieces are removed for use as bricks or road-fill. Sand and limestone from coral reefs are also made into cement for new buildings. According to a 1995 study, 20,000 cubic meters of coral
per year were collected in the Maldives solely for construction materials (Brown, 1995).

Part 2 to follow....

WindysDesigns said...

Part 2........

• Mining for Calcium. Dead coral is harvested for calcium supplements.

• Harvesting for souvenirs/Jewelry. Coral species are used in the dried ornamental trade business, collected and
traded for souvenirs and jewelry. Coral curios and jewelry are often sold to tourists and exporters.

• Harvesting for Marine Aquaria. Live coral is collected for the marine aquarium industry and public aquaria.

• Harvesting for Medical Use. Researchers have been using coral for bone graph clinical trials and imports of coral for medical purposes increased 500% from 1991 to 1992 (Fenical, 1996).

Italy is considered the center of coral jewelry creation, and Torre del Greco, near Naples, is where the best coral jewelry in Italy is made. There are 100 local divers licensed to collect coral, and they have to dive to 80 meters, at which point they can only stay down for 4 minutes.

These people have lived off their coral for two millenia, it's kind of hard to imagine that they would deplete the very material that has sustained them for so long.

I could go on. Google 'coral mining' and read for yourself. While the environmental impact is definitely real, it is highly questionable that the boycotting of coral beads and jewelry will have any more impact than choosing to become vegan has had on the beef and leather trades.

Raising awareness isn't pushing one side's agenda, it's educating the public by providing facts on all sides.

eclipse said...

There were so many things wrong with this.
1. They invited a mass-market jewelry designer (not MAKER) to write the article, when there are oodles of knowledgeable jewelers and environmentalists right on Etsy who could have written something for them.

2. The article was very generalized and throws out the baby with the bathwater. It lumps in all coral together, when there is bamboo coral, dyed coral, and other types which are farmed and not endangered, not to mention vintage coral. The over-simplified message of the article is "ALL coral is bad, mmkay?"

3. The article makes it sound as if harvesting for jewelry is the main threat to coral reefs, when global warming, pollution, harvesting for aquarium hobbyists, and other factors are a much larger threat.

4. Etsy published a BOYCOTT petition for legal products which are listed and sold on their own website, and which Etsy makes a profit from. It's one thing to just inform artists of how to ethically source their materials, but this was a boycott petition aimed at BUYERS which said "Pledge to never buy coral." And you could see in the comments how many people had the knee jerk reaction: "Thanks, I won't EVER buy ANY coal now."

5. This mass-market jewelry designer who even sells a budget line at TARGET (who makes that $30 Target necklace? In what country? how much are they paid?) was allowed to use this article to promote her new line, including sketches of designs and links to where to buy them, OUTSIDE of Etsy.
Her Etsy profile also contained links to her off-Etsy shop, which is something many Etsians have been suspended for doing.

6. Then...the locks. The enormous amount of locked threads, which you won't find from searching "coral" on the forums. Check the closed threads blog for them.

7. The Fauxpology.
"We're sorry if you were upset or insulted but we never meant it in a negative way when we told people to NEVER BUY YOUR ART."

Really Etsy?
REALLY?
How can a boycott ever be neutral or positive?

GotMyMoneyBackFromEtsyFuctardHipsterThieves said...

What I'd like to know is this: how many Etsy sellers that have "caught on" are issuing chargebacks on thier bills for services not rendered? Because it's clear now. Services are NOT being rendered.

I got fed up a few months ago, closed my shop, paid my bill and issued a chargeback for services not rendered via my bank. Guess what? Etsy NEVER responded to my bank, (SOUND FAMILIAR???) so the decision was made in MY favor, and I got all of my money back.

I highly recommend that everyone do it.

Put these fuckers in their place for once!

eclipse said...

They have added a second post to their announcement/explanation/excuse

julietgo
Etsy Admin
julietgo says:
Hello everyone,

I’m back to clarify a few things about our editorial policies.

First of all, I want to reiterate that there is no "pay for play" on Etsy’s blog. Some members have been wondering about contracts and terms of agreement between us and outside contributors. Etsy does not accept payment in exchange for editorial coverage, not in this case and not ever.

Your feedback on the coral article has made us recognize the need to clarify our internal guidelines on publishing opinions. We didn’t sufficiently vet the point of view to make sure it complied with Etsy's broader policies. (Coral is not a prohibited item on Etsy. Each seller does need to ensure that his or her use of the site complies with all applicable laws; that includes any regulations or restrictions for the sale of coral. Beyond the legal issues, however, Etsy members are responsible for making important moral or ethical decisions regarding what they buy and sell.) We also should have better anticipated the countervailing view. And if we still wanted to address the subject, we should have sought to introduce more balance and clearly labeled it as opinion, which reflects the point of view of its author and not Etsy as a company. You’ll see the results of our toothier internal guidelines in our future coverage.

Lastly, I’d like to step back from the specific content of this debate to make a general point about contributors to our blog who are new members of Etsy. We have a long history of featuring guests. They bring our community into conversation with the wider world, spark new ideas and by driving their audience to the blog, help raise awareness of Etsy with people who are not yet familiar with us. I understand why many of you were frustrated by this particular instance of a contribution by someone without long standing in the community. But I want to be clear that broadly speaking, a contributor’s history (or lack of) with Etsy is not a factor in whether we collaborate with them. The decision generally lies in whether the ideas they want to share are substantive and relevant to our readers.

We greatly appreciate the constructive feedback, as it will help us do better by you next time.

Best,
Juliet

eclipse said...

They have added a second post to their announcement/explanation/excuse
it won't let me post it here, I get a google error saying it is too long?

The Righteous One said...

eclipse, I found it in the spam folder and put it through (it actually came through twice so I deleted one, hopefully that didn't mess it up)

eclipse said...

AuctionBites covered the issue as well

http://blog.auctionbytes.com/cgi-bin/blog/blog.pl?/pl/2010/10/1287376895.html

feelingcrappedon said...

It's all utterly and totally ridiculous. Juliet is just patronizing the sellers with her faux apology. All the while knowing she is not answering the questions or doing what really needs to be done.

If I could leave right this minute, I would, but I can't. So I'm hanging on until January by which I hope to have built up my website traffic and sales considerably. I'm done. I've had enough.

Etsy I want a divorce.

Unhappyincupcakeland said...

Temple St.Clair (Is that seriously the name she was born with?) should have given equal time to how many of the products she uses are the result of child slave labor in India before ripping coral users a new ass-hole. How much of her stuff is directly from Indian mines, for instance, Bihar?

The problem with Etsy is that none of the Dorquettes are informed enough to ask some of those questions before publishing.

And I note Julie never responded to the outside links question.

Well, that's Etsy. And that's why I am no longer there.

SusanA said...

So Etsy has some jewelry designer who sells allover, has her set up an account so she can post some bullshit about coral. Windy is right about the real issues for coral, the main one being global warming.

Her jewelry is mass produced and pretty boring looking- even if she is a fellow tree hugger, why is she even given space. These kids don't have half a brain among the 100+ of them combined. Do they look for to piss off their customers (the sellers- though you'd never guess that from Etsy's attitude)

Enough said...

I never read the storque so I was unaware of this.

What a completely condescending article.

Nice sermon Ms. Fake Name, holier than thou, out of touch, privileged, entitled yahoo.

What is with the scads and scads of "thank you for informing us" comments? I'm amazed there are that many who haven't figured out the article is out of order and the whole of etsy is a scam.

I agree, please people, just close up shop, many of us have. It took me almost 3 years to get completely etsied out. But enough is enough.

There are alternatives. Artfire is offering a $9.95 deal for example.

Etsy sellers, don't allow yourself to be treated with such disdain. Just leave. Now.

metric system said...

Has Etsy's attempt at a producing fashion magazine ever produced anything of value for the company?

'Super blog'? Amazing how it went straight to 'super blog' status instantly.

The 'labs' and the 'stroque' were/are ill conceived disasters, dreamed up by nitwits who didn't have a clue what their actual business is, or what their customers want.

ATemple said...

GotMyMoneyBack--you are ballsy and brilliant! Hahahaha--my captcha code for this is "whines".

Anonymous said...

Sandahl here...

And now all the coral threads are being closed, consolidated into this one, with an advance scolding...

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6659297

NotaChild said...

"STEP BACK"? You had better step back, Baby, all the way back.

Lack of research, intense need to seem knowlegable about "green stuff", no proofing, no imput, no thoughtful anything, and not one but three big, fat, piles of bullshit to follow it up.
Nice job, including and especially RobW who seems to sound like Luther Pendross to a whole lot of forum posters. Won't work this time to put the Smooth Talker our front. The RW Club needs to open their eyes and stop thinking that man is something special, other than a politician for a shitty little website.

WindysDesigns said...

Well, well, well. It's interesting to learn that Seaweb has a history of histrionics and inflating issues to fit their agenda.

It seems that in January 1998 they, along with their partner Fenton Communications formed a 2 year campaign to "Give the Swordfish a Break" designed to get high-end restaurants and chefs to declare a moratorium on serving swordfish until the stock had “rebounded”. Their entire program was eventually declared “flawed to the core” by U.S. Fish & Wildlife officials.

You might also be interested in knowing that Fenton Communications engineered the 1989 Alar-on-apples fundraising scam. Some of you might remember this as it resulted in apples being pulled from store shelves, schools, etc. and the apple industry lost over $250 million dollars. After the Alar-on-apples scare was totally discredited as junk science, The Wall Street Journal found and printed one of David Fenton’s internal memos where he stated:

“We designed the Alar Campaign so that revenue would flow back to the Natural Resources Defense Council from the public, and we sold this book about pesticides through a 900 number and the Donahue show. And to date there has been $700,000 in net revenue from it.”
And the apple industry lost $250 Million?

This is an interesting read, on how extremist activists like Seaweb operate and who really benefits. It's a word doc, but if you can open it, it is really informational on the tactics used to generate monies for the groups with little benefit to the cause they are supposedly supporting:

http://tinyurl.com/25ghzkb

Christina said...

I closed my shop 4+ months ago and a couple of days ago (before CoralGate) had my buyer account deleted.

I refuse to even purchase anything from there. As much as I would like to support the sellers I cannot knowing that it will also support Etsy.

I cannot figure out why sellers continue to stay once they figure out how unethical and inadequate Etsy is. You all are business owners. Why are you allowing a company to reflect poorly on your business and put everything you've worked for in jeopardy?

Etsy is a sinking ship. I guarantee within a year they will expand, once again, their definition of "collective" and you will see an even bigger flood of mass producers.

I've seen a lot of people flee including some big names like Sharon Montrose and ArtandGhosts.

It's time to stop talking and threatening to leave and just do it. Who, as a customer, would let some other business they pay treat them like this? No one.

Get a domain and use BigCartel or Shopify. It's easy. You have to bring in traffic, but last time I checked Etsy's "built in traffic" really isn't benefiting most people anyways. The best thing is you call the shots. You get to be in control of your business.

YoureFired said...

Quid pro quo is not necessarily cash in hand, but it ends up that way when a person is so thoroughly and shamefully promoted. Does Juliet think we are that stupid? It probably just never occurred to her that payola is payola. Doesn't have to be forked over directly.

We are not stupid. We are older, wiser, more knowledgeable than you are, Julia. MAN UP. /Say you blew it, and take the blog post down!
You should be fired.

Anne said...

HeadBangHeadBangHeadBang...thud. I just read the second clarification. It's almost impossible for average people off the street (like us) to buy illegal coral and ivory in the United States because suppliers here aren't going to risk running afoul of the very specific laws spelling out what they can and cannot import. I suppose you could sneak over to Europe, demolish a reef, smuggle the stuff through Customs, and sell it out of the back of your truck--but it wouldn't do you a lot of good. Nobody who bought it and made anything out of it could come out in the open to sell it. As long as we're buying from reputable vendors, coral should be among the least of our worries. How about conflict gemstones, "blood jade," or the working conditions in most of the factories in India and China that are producing gemstone beads for U.S. markets?

DancingWindDesigns said...

I've been having my own little private boycott of etsy for a few months now. Boycott coral my a$$-boycott etsy. I know I sure as hell won't be listing anything there ever again and after this, I will try and find my favorite sellers someplace else. I will not be the reason etsy makes another penny. I grew up protesting (back in the late 60's and 70's). You would be surprised what a good boycott can do to a corporation. I'm not afraid to use my shop name either because I know admin lurks and reads here-especially at times like this. It's DancingWindDesigns, you ungrateful idiots. You want to ban me for my shop announcment, see if I care. I just realized that I have nothing but comtempt for those yankee yuppies. (My apologies to the Northerners who read this-the yankee slur was NOT directed at you.)

jenjasmine said...

I'll bet that mass producing Ms St Clair has used more coral before she signed the petition than all etsy sellers combined.

Coral said...

Etsy finally crossed the last line of decency and lack of accountability.

I've already got two shops on AF and am closing my other two shops on Etsy.

Etsy can get fucked.

usefuldata said...

Is it possible Temple St. Clair is a silent etsy investor?

She and her husband Paul Engler are very wealthy. Tiffany's used to own a share of her company and they had enough money to buy it back.

Can you say, I'd like a seat on your board etsy?

Play to play, nah....

Idiotsy strikes again said...

Hopefully this latest Coralgate will bring more people over to Zibbet (especially with this week's addition of the exporter and Artfire importer) and open people's eyes to the stupidity that continues to happy on Idiotsy.

Morgansilk said...

This is how I was permanently muted. I pointed out blatant errors in the blog that was supposed to be about vintage items, but had at least two handmade pieces that were not only mistagged as vintage but said HANDMADE in the titles.
This particulr gem was written by MaryMary. My blog comment was deleted, TeenAngster wrote me and tried to convince me that handmade and vintage could be the same, and MaryMary never responded to my emails.
I waited to hear from her for two days, then posted in the forum and asked that Storque article writers have their work vetted before they push that button. I wasn't nasty, I was honest.

Hence the permamute. RobW told me I was "disruptive". This happened a long time ago; this is the way the blog is handled. (It isn't, but we are). The only thing new about this is that so many people noticed. I am SO GLAD THEY DID.

Anonymous said...

Sandahl here...

People would be shocked to see what some are being muted for recently, too. Seriously!

Sarah said...

Almost got a whole day:
http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6658582

They locked this thread for no apparent reason.
Too bad etsy hates satire because no one read this puppy and walked away angry or frowning.

There are a gazillion BNR threads. Are they going to consolidate those too? (261 pages of results)

There are a bazillion "just listed" threads (780 pages of results), are they going to close & consolidate those too?

There are a bazillion "purple" threads (191 pages of results), are they going to close & consolidate those too?

There are a bazillion "front page" threads (300 pages of results), are they going to close & consolidate those too?

There are a bazillion "treasury" threads (2406 pages of results), are they going to close & consolidate those too?

Is it really that hard to have multiple threads opened in multiple tabs — or would someone have to put down a plush toy for 5 minutes?

The "consolidation" of threads is laughable at best.

Morgansilk's permamute should have been overturned a long long time ago. Wasn't that something that Rob Kalin promised last winter in his interview — that permamutes would be undone?

Bijoutiful said...

Yeah, I got my money back. (posted earlier as "IGotMyMoneyBack...")

I've been on a moral rampage since the whole "Weekend Deals" fiasco last October.

The last straw for me was when my shop was wrongly closed back in June. EB did a post on it, and the bitches know how grateful I am for that.

But Etsy is NOT a "necessary evil". I'm doing just fine now without them!

Feeling scammed? Pay your bill and then take it to the bank. Plain and simple.

Prostitution Whore said...

Juliet I am so glad that you signed your stupid ass post Best

Because you know what..It was the Best Bull Shit that I have ever read!

There is nothing E can do at this point. It's done.

No apologies, No retraction..No taking the blog down..No Nothin!

I don't give a shit what you do. I would love to see a lawsuit. I would love it!

Amenhotep IV said...

They are closing down any thread about it left and right and they consolidated everything into one thread, with a warning at the beginning.

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6659297

corAL said...

Let's see, Juliet has been a member of Etsy since June 2010, according to her profile. Way to fuck up a community woman! She's the one that needs to be swept under the rug.

I see there are A LOT of new faces showing up in the Coralgate threads. You know something is not right when new people come to the forums to protest.

Rokali, get your ass into the forums and talk to your people already. This is one time where I don't think that this will blow over.

Temple St. Clair, you want to do something positive for the environment? Start with Etsy. Ask them to remove your blog post. You've muddied the waters up over a half baked blog article. I surely wouldn't want my name attached to that mess.

feelingcrappedon said...

Did anyone really expect them to take the blog down? or give an apology? or anything more than what they've done? I'm surprised they haven't started the muting yet.

Temple St. Clair loves to use 'causes' to sell her jewelry and book. Look at her website. She has jewelry for her coral cause. She has jewelry for homeless people. She has jewelry for saving the Japan dolphin. Seems that's how she gets people to her site.

She should've never been allowed on the site. Period.

The Funny One said...

Let's aim the blame where it belongs - Kalin. Did Juliet run this shit by anyone or did they just say splash your personal bias all over the Dorque? The fallout and seller reaction is justified, but Etsy does this crap all the time.
No one is managing and no one is supervising. This all boils down to Kalin.
I would have fired Juliet before she sat down at her plushie computer board the next morning.

All Wired Up TOO said...

etsy sellers need to put their mouth where their money is...(YES I meant it that way) Boycot etsy! Take your listings and go somewhere else..anywhere else..take your traffic with you.

Blog where you are, message your buyers,use every Social Network there is..and tell them why!

etsy certainly isn't going to listen to it's sellers they never do! Why be surprised now?

a boycot may be the only thing that gets their attention..
OH and don't go back!

No Wonder! said...

That's precisely what gets me, All Wired Up... People have been shut down without notice or warning, and have then shouted to the moon about how much they hate Etsy for what they're doing. They're given free subscriptions to AF, and then once E reinstates their listings, they're right back again with their tails between their legs, listing and listing and listing away. (And getting no views or sales!!) I've seen it several times now.

NO WONDER. Etsy's behavior is therefore condoned. Don't expect any change to happen now or ever.

Have you any pride at all? You don't need Etsy to survive! YOU help keep Etsy in business. .20 here, .20 there. It all adds up, believe it! As someone else said, if EVERYONE FOUGHT FOR THEIR MONEY BACK, it would hurt Etsy where it counts. But, it seems no one has the khootspah to do that. Why not? Why not stand up for what's right?

disillusioned said...

I'm now completely disillusioned with Etsy.
After the mature items issue, and the real name "accident" (I was one of those whose real name was revealed) and several other issues...now this one adds insult to injury. I have a horrible feeling that I know exactly where Etsy is heading, and so I'm doing what's necessary for me. Moving.

I do wonder, though, at all the people eager to post about these issues on facebook...you do know that Etsy and facebook have the same "owners", don't you ?

Bah said...

Many of us know about Accel, Etsy, FB, Twitter... The point is that people should know about this, and social networking is one sure fire way to get the word out. What is your point?

PubliclyHumiliateThem said...

Is there a list of email and twitter accounts of executive admin, investors, etc?

The energy being spent debating on the offending site is now futile; etsians need to bring the topic outside of the confines of the forums.
It's going to take more than just keeping a thread afloat to get Etsy's attention.

Exposing etsy's practices on twitter, on personal blogs and facebook pages will have more impact.
Hashtags #etsyfail and #coralgate. Use them to build solidarity and get the attention of those who don't r visit etsy's forums.

Thank you, EB for your efforts to address this mess.

Wake up! said...

WAKE UP ETSY SELLERS!

This is par for the course. Over and over and over again. This is nothing new. The article will not go away. There will not be an apology. The next step in the cycle is mutings. That will scare enough folks that this will die.

It always works.

And begging Rokali to step in? Gimme a break. Etsy has headed to hell in a handbasket quicker under his faux hipster helm than it ever would have under Maria. Anyone want to recap the last 10 months verses the 10 months prior? I would take Maria back in a brooklyn minute.

And blaming temple corp is not logical either. They made a business move. Can you blame them? Nope. Can you blame etsy. Hell yeah. As that is exactly where the blame lies.

I understand that many folks feel the need to still sell on etsy. But for heavens sake, quit buying there. Seek out your faves on other venues. Seek out your supplies and gifts on other venues. Google is your friend! You will not be supporting this behavior, and you will be telling those sellers hey I can sell somewhere else. It is a win win.

Wake up! Wake up! Wake up! Screaming on blogs and forums will not change their ways. Money talks.

Morgansilk said...

I would never ask to be un-muted. It would be a.)humiliating and 2.)forum posting wastes too much of my precious time.

I don't beg to be forgiven for something I don't believe was wrong; I don't speak to those I do not respect.

no saint anything said...

Ms Temple St Clair has a blog post about her Etsy article. Only 2 comments so far. http://templestclair.blogspot.com/2010/10/temple-talks-to-etsycom-declaring-coral.html#comments

coralution said...

Take a deep breath, and WALK.

Just walk. I did, a while back. I know, I know, youw want to get your shop to a certain place, or build up your website first...but the fact of the matter is, handmade online is an unstable situation right now. Until all the Google ranking changes and blogging mania levels out over some months, you're always chasing a moving target.

You don't have to give up your dream...but do not allow yourself to remain in a place where you are dependent on a cocky kid who believes he's the next Mark Zuckerberg, but doesn't have the common sense or general decency of a walnut. Etsy is run, as you know, by a bunch of lil' hipsters who have not yet seen what treating customers with disdain will eventually do.

Those guys think Etsy is iron-clad, and it's because we let them. Vote with your dollars and start a revolution whilst they finish adolescence and that all-consuming desire to be the "cool kids now" because they were snubbed in high school.

Working my ass off to keep customers happy, in a multitude of scenarios, for 30 years allows me to say this. Word.

Catherinette Rings said...

I wish i could make an article on ETSY about how Steampunk Jewelry
help save the planet . Recycling clock parts etc ... I also use coral but not the endangered one .

SellerX said...

Temple St Claire
I really wish you had bothered to explain exactly what type of coral is being over harvested in your recent Etsy article. Would have been a great idea to discuss ALL actions affecting reefs such as mining for construction, mining for calcium supplements and worst of all Global Warming which is killing reef systems faster than all other actions.

The article would have been more informative and less divisive within the community if more space had been devoted to the actual issue and less to your upcoming spring collection.

Asking readers to sign a blanket boycott against coral without any education on the different types of coral in use certainly may have helped to make this a very unhappy Christmas for many small families.

Way to drop a load of garbage all over someone who probably only makes 30k a year.

EtsyBitch thanks for publishing the link to St Claire's website with a COMMENTS SECTION for us to vent our spleen on.
http://templestclair.blogspot.com/2010/10/temple-talks-to-etsycom-declaring-coral.html#comment-form

SheWhoKnows said...

" No Wonder! said...
That's precisely what gets me, All Wired Up... People have been shut down without notice or warning, and have then shouted to the moon about how much they hate Etsy for what they're doing. They're given free subscriptions to AF, and then once E reinstates their listings, they're right back again with their tails between their legs, listing and listing and listing away. (And getting no views or sales!!) I've seen it several times now."

(((((((((((((((((((((

Keep in mind that people are supporting themselves with these venues. I can't quit Etsy because it would be shooting my own foot. It's about business and the bottom line, not just about feelings. Nobody should be held to an unreasonably high standard; everyone's circumstances are different.
I also do not see any tails between anybody's legs. That wasn't a very nice thing to say.

The Stubborn One said...

And, cue the shop closures! It's starting. 5 days ago ChristianMarie was given 2 weeks to pay her bill. She spoke up about the Zibbet importer, and now she has an empty shop.

Over Etsy said...

Etsycorp = Hipster Hypocrites

Etsy is on the way out.

The best way to get traffic to the reputable handmade sites is to go there yourself.

The negative vibes caused by etsy has gone viral. They're done.

Direct your energies to one of the alternatives. You'll be surprised how professional, respectful and non-drama they are.

Thank you EB's for being the voice of reason.

WolfCreekMill said...

My empty shop contains only my new announcement with a direct link to my AF studio....when in Rome...

How long till I get TOU violated right off the site....not soon enough.

Wolf Creek Millworks. (I made twp posts because I mistyped my own business name)

Wolf said...

My shop is closed. My announcement tells people why and where to find me.

I've written a blog post about this- it's been posted to my 4 blogs, my fan page, my personal facebook page and twitter.

It wasn't that it was about coral, it was more the fact that Etsy knowingly allowed numerous TOU violations and is still violating it themselves, daily. This was simply the final straw that broke my back.

If and when Etsy decides to start abiding by that very TOU *I* as a seller have to strictly abide by, I may consider reopening. But I am not holding my breath.

I feel like I wasted the last nearly 5 years on Etsy, hoping it'd change back to what it once was. Hoping in vain apparently.

In the meantime, I'll focus on my Artfire, Big Cartel and Zibbet shops.

Sad seller said...

You know, I'm embarrassed that I sell on etsy, and this has sealed the deal for me. Financially I cannot just up and leave immediately (I'm in the, ah, weening stages), but I will be making my own purchases elsewhere and looking for my favorite sellers on Artfire.

I suspect I will be able to find a lot more of them over there now.

Amenhotep IV said...

I now shop for handmade on ArtFire first, or on retail websites I've already bookmarked.

Almost done with my off-Etsy shop, and putting more energy into my AF shop.

SusanA said...

Rob kept talking about social networking. Well once again he's proved it will never happen. Social networking can't happen if opposing views are muted, threads closed and people are basically afraid of saying that might offend the admin.

It's more cult. The cupcakes drink the koolaid and those why point out the flaws ae told they are wrong and quieted by the leaders. Pathetic

Martha said...

I absolutely HATE when someone tries to look eco-friendly and oh-so-cool by signing under a petition written by eco-terrorists who mislead people by telling just the tiny part of truth that is suitable for their cause! Just read the article about that small Italian town - they are loosing businesses existing for generations because some hipsters want to play green....

In the meantime, the same person uses gems, diamonds, gold and other resources that are not "conflict-free" (because there is not such a thing right now) and probably outsources to the 3rd world's sweatshops!

Non Toxic said...

IF the EB's would ever consider doing a post on "the toxic workplace" I think it would be a real eye opener.

Just google to find lots of info and a checklist for determining if you are in a toxic organization.

Yes, yes, yes, yes...

Get out of the abusive relationship.

It happens one by one. Etsy is down one more. Chalk another one up for Artfire.

Goat said...

No disrespect to the sellers there. Some of them are dear friends, but, this article could have easily been titled "Sellers Never Learn" and been more to the point.

Etsy is not my boyfriend, I don't need teach him anything and I don't need to hang around seeing if he'll change like the besotted 2o year old we have all been at one time or another.

Maybe if everyone were wildly successful, but, dude, at some point there's you know, this fish and some bait and a line to cut.

How far up the ass is Etsy gonna have to go before people stop being outraged and surprised? It's not like everyone hasn't had YEARS of fair warning.

Co-dependant no more, as they say. Because at some point continuing to fill their coffers while raging against the great plush machine passes dysfunctional and goes straight into signing up to be abused.

If you made it at Etsy you CAN make it somewhere else. Traffic my ass, Etsy is Soylent Green all the way.

So of course Etsy does whatever they want, it works for them. What I don't understand is how long does it not have to work for you?

communitymember said...

Why do people continue posting to Etsy's forums expecting them to change? How can it still be unclear to anyone that they aren't listening and are now just exploiting the idea of handmade? With all the closed threads and the stupid fauxpologies that fail to address the intelligently articulated concerns of its artisans, how can you possibly think you'll get them to listen?

("Oh, sure, my boyfriend does mean things, and I guess some might even call him abusive, but I know I can convince him to change. As long as I love him enough and give him all of my attention, I'm sure I can be the one to rescue him from himself.")

Etsy has emotionally manipulated its seller base and created warm and fuzzy feelings by doing superficial and meaningless things like signing emails "Love, Etsy" (and how insincere was "Best, Juliet" when it came at the end of a response that very clearly WASN'T about giving sellers her "best"?). Etsy has exploited the zealous and almost religious feeling that comes with participating in a movement. Its sellers are also its crusadors on behalf of the handmade movement that it now exploits.

But Etsy doesn't love its sellers. It is not your boyfriend, abusive or otherwise. It's not a religion. It's just a mall that's trying to make money and it doesn't seem to be doing so with a whole lot of integrity.

You pay Etsy rent, and it's been diverting traffic away from your store for awhile now. Don't waste your energy trying to reform them. They'll gladly continue to take your money and your time, but don't be fooled into thinking they care or that they are actually listening to you.

Support handmade. Support yourself. Close your Etsy shop, open up somewhere else, and stop wasting your energy on trying to get them to change.

Xeno the Overlord said...

Wake up! : And begging Rokali to step in? Gimme a break. <......> I would take Maria back in a brooklyn minute.

-- -- -- --

Oh, yes. It was sickening to see people on the forums celebrating Rokali coming back as CEO, saying Maria did a bad job, etc. and actually thinking things would be better under that idiot. I don't really have negative words strong enough to describe his 'leadership'. Notice the mutings, store closings and favoritism did an uptick as soon as it came back. Maria wasn't great, but Kalin is simply nauseating and enraging. And, a really awful manager.

I like how he comes to the forums like twice a year, apparently when he's on a manic binge and acts like he's going to engage with the community... then disappears without a trace for 4-6 months.

communitymember said...

And if there's still any doubt that Etsy is more interested in hiding its mistakes than it is in addressing them or engaging in constructive dialogue, take a look at how busy they've been sweeping the Storque article fiasco out of view:

- They've "consolidated" the discussion into one forum thread, which in Etsyspeak actually means that they closed threads that were full of useful ideas while magnanimously allowing one to remain open. (If they were truly consolidating the discussion, they wouldn't have made it so difficult to even find most of it anymore.)

- Of the 14 Etsy announcements posted since the beginning of October (so, in the last 21 days), fully 5 have been in the last 2. Is it just a coincidence that this sudden rash of staff announcements has had the effect of taking admin's response to the coral article fiasco off of the forum's front page?

Etsy is not addressing its sellers legitimate concerns. It's just doing everything it can to hide them.

break the cycle of abuse said...

1. Do you often feel used by the person?

2. Have you often felt that he (or she) doesn't care about you?

3. Does he lie and deceive you?

4. Does he tend to make contradictory statements?

5. Does he tend to take from you and not give back much?

6. Does he often appeal to pity? Does he seem to try to make you feel sorry for him?

7. Does he try to make you feel guilty?

8. Do you sometimes feel he is taking advantage of your good nature?

9. Does he seem easily bored and need constant stimulation?

10. Does he use a lot of flattery? Does he interact with you in a way that makes you feel flattered even if he says nothing overtly complimentary?

11. Does he make you feel worried? Does he do it obviously or more cleverly and sneakily?

12. Does he give you the impression you owe him?

13. Does he chronically fail to take responsibility for harming others? Does he blame everyone and everything but himself?

http://www.youmeworks.com/sociopaths.html

And: the sociopath "seeks out situations where their tyrannical behavior will be tolerated, condoned, or admired" (http://www.mcafee.cc/Bin/sb.html).....and Rob creates Etsy after wondering what to do with his life post-college. We're all part and parcel of Rob's coping mechanism. It's the only way he'll survive.

Oh wait. We already secured his future by coughing up the dough for the last five years. He's set for life now. Everything else he's doing with Etsy is for his own amusement. He never wanted anything out of Etsy beyond shitloads of cash. And if you believe anything else, you're sorely mistaken. That's why they contemptuously call sellers "users" at HQ. Break the cycle, folks. It's disgusting.

Anonymous said...

They swoon for anyone who is even vageuly famous at Etsy. Such star whores.

HOWDY said...

all comments removed from her blog. Cannot imagine why!
http://templestclair.blogspot.com/2010/10/temple-talks-to-etsycom-declaring-coral.html

coralwho? said...

just one more clusterfuck in a spewing of many with many more to come, i have no doubt. what a joke, kalin's social networking/ecommerce site is a heaping pile of shit. close threads and mute their sellers because they don't like the backlash of blog post by someone who was not vetted? fuck off etsy.

Straw meet Camel's Back said...

I wish they would clarify what is meant by the following quote, stated by Fred Wilson, investor and board member concerning the future of Etsy, here at the 5:25 mark (you may want to start listening at the 4:30 mark):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FM66PgLbBQ

"The other thing I think that's going to happen is I think it's going to spread a little bit more in terms of the kinds of um, things that people could buy on Etsy. I don't think it will ever move, you know, entirely beyond the artistic, sort of handmade roots, but I think there are more things that um, that the marketplace could take on that a . . . They already have for example vintage items and they have um, supplies and there's other things I think fit very well that they could add to the marketplace. So, I really think this could be you know, a billion dollars of transactions in the marketplace in the next 3 or 4 years um, and that would easily be a public company so . . ."

While I'm relieved that Etsy may not move "entirely" beyond it's handmade roots, I would like to know just how far it is planning to move. I think sellers deserve to know and make plans accordingly.

Personally, I am moving on.

EtsySellerX said...

Comments were wiped from her blogger page -
Here's a NEW page to post comments on

http://www.jckonline.com/2010/09/28/jck-asks-temple-st-clair

If she gets enough bad press she may ask ESTY to REMOVE the obnoxious article herself.
We can only hope.

Eveline said...

I suggested on page 297 of that enormously long thread that people should put their money where their mouths are an stop relisting/renewing and shopping on Etsy. I stopped selling a while ago and it was a huge weight off my shoulders. I now look for my favourite Etsy sellers elsewhere.

Thankfully, quite a few people said they too stopped either selling or at least relisting/renewing since this coralgate.

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6659297&page=297

Evermore Organics said...

You CAN leave Etsy. YOU CAN. This kind of stuff will happen over and over. Why are people even whining? LEAVE. The only thing Etsy responds to is money, so hit em here it hurts.

If I go into a department store and I don't like whats going on, I turn heel and walk out. I don't whine to management until I'm blue in the face.

Slightly off topic, but there are tea-cozies on the FP right now...

WindysDesigns said...

This is off topic, but I just read September's Weather report: http://www.etsy.com/storque/etsy-news/etsy-statistics-september-2010-weather-report-10902/

And I can't help being disturbed by the numbers, despite all the 'increases' that make Etsy appear to be doing so well, and all the positive comments.

I just did some numbers and there are currently over 7 million items listed on Etsy. 2.2 million items were listed last month and 1.5 million were sold. That's 700,000 new listings that got added to the inventory that already exists on Etsy. Consistently there are more items listed each month than sold, so the inventory is growing at a much larger rate than sales or member ship.

Overall the figures are increasing, as compared to years past, but I don't feel like the numbers of buyers (which we don't know the percentage of since 'members' include both buyers and sellers) and the number of sales is all that great if they are always going to be less than the number of items listed each month.

In other words, the inventory is growing faster than the number of sales. I'm not a statistician, but that doesn't seem 'good' to me.

Stacey said...

I took advantage of the ArtFire $5.95 deal and closed my shop on Etsy Oct. 1. I don't regret closing that shop, not one bit. I don't miss the lackluster traffic (AF views, after 3 weeks, are the same as after 4 months on Etsy), I don't miss the bloodthirsty competitiveness, and I certainly don't miss incompetent admins who can't see past the end of their bespeckled noses (or moustaches) to see that there are a lot of angry sellers.

And it's telling when you skim over that massive coral thread and see people saying over and over 'I never post in the forums, but...'.

Shuttering my Etsy shop also forced me to finally start working on a shop based on my own website, too. I like being part of the crowd on AF & Cargoh, but it's nice having complete independence, too.

WantToBeASponsor said...

How does one become a sponsor? I see two slots and they are already taken.

Anonymous said...

Cranium St.BlurryBrain is just too fucking stupid to be putting her opinion out there.
She really should just keep her mouth closed.
And Etsy wants to be seen as a community hub on the web and yet is more than willing to treat their community members to a good old fashioned back stabbing whenever it suits them.

G33K GODDESS said...

Great comments, everyone. Bless you all for speaking the truth. I, too, have closed my shop and left my parting remarks in my announcement. I am FUCKING DISGUSTED by this whole situation, as well as the brush off we have been getting from Etsy staff. I have written to support twice in the last week about this and all they do is COPYPASTE juliet's remarks OVER AND OVER AGAIN.

They didn't take down the article, the pledge, nothing. Wont even SPEAK to us... and herded the dissenters into a single thread of the forums which is now over 3000 posts long!! Please join us there, as it is currently head-quarters to a sit-in, and free from censorship since Etsy's staff DOESN'T GIVE A DAMN and doesn't go into the thread at all!!

The Stubborn One said...

I would also suggest not only talking to a lawyer as others have suggested, but as Bijoutiful said earlier, take the necessary steps towards getting your money back. Stand up for yourselves. You're following the TOUS, yet Etsy isn't. You are essentially paying for a scam and not getting any type of customer service. And what's the worst that could happen anyway? More than likely, E will not rebuttal because they're too busy playing God. But if on the off chance that they do, and the result is somehow not decided in your favor, at least you created some work for them. You really have nothing more to lose than you're losing now.

Sock it to 'em! To the fucking mooooon!

Wooly Bumblebee said...

Just opened all new shops on AF and am leaving E permanently after Christmas! I already shut one of my shops on E and stuck a nice "announcement" in there. If they want to mute me, again, they can! I am fed-up!!! I have been there since 2007 with my other shop and have provided E with lots of fees and sales. No more!! I am sick to my stomach. It's easy to say we hate what they do, but I personally feel, that unless I take action and leave then I am not really standing up for what I believe in. And I believe that E is just a money hungry corp now that could care less about us sellers, or anything handmade. They make me ill!

The Stubborn One said...

I hope everyone reads my previous comment, as well as the comments from "GotMyMoneyBack" and Bijoutiful. It might sound like a ballsy risky thing to do, but hey! Isn't what Etsy is doing these days ballsy and risky too? And look at how things worked out for her as a result of Etsy's favorite pastime: "IGNORE". I almost fell out of my chair when I read about what she did!

Etsy is just BEGGING for a lawsuit. But until that happens, if you've been defamed by this article, muted for speaking out, or have been wrongly shutdown:




GET



YOUR



MONEY



BACK.

madlook said...

Fantastic post. I really hope karma bites Etsy in the ass. Judging from the actions and (lack of) reactions to this whole mess, they deserve it.

G33K GODDESS said...

There are so many sellers who are unaware of this total cock-up. Please tweet about it using #coralgate and help let people know how Etsy treats its sellers!

ChristianMarie said...

Yep. When I criticized Etsy in a Zibbet importer thread, I got an email saying that my overdue bill had to be paid in 2 weeks. 4 days later, I criticized them in the coral thread, and woke up to find that they had shut down my shop and muted me in the forums. The weeks get shorter as I get louder.

I am done with Etsy. They have the WORST customer service of any company I have ever encountered. As soon as I get my bill paid, I'm unlisting everything and slapping a link to my Zibbet shop in my announcement.

I was nervous about leaving Etsy yesterday. I've been on Zibbet for a while, and it has been good for me, but I've had to work harder at promoting my shop than I did at Etsy. Today, I sold more at Z than I have at Etsy in the past month. More than I have at Etsy in any month. I'm not nervous anymore.

If you're on Etsy, I urge you to leave now. You will have to leave eventually as things will only get worse. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be.

OnceburnedTwicegone said...

Wow ChristianMarie- They gave you 2 weeks notice? I'm jealous! I got no notice at all. They emailed after the fact that my shop was suspended and I had no idea I was muted until I tried to comment on something in the forums. So you bet I will do whatever it takes to get my money back (over $3000.00)and dispute the $1100+ dollar bill they want me to pay. After the way I was treated I cannot see giving them dime one.

divapixie said...

I myself have not had anything listed in my Etsy shop for ages now. I plan to go into it today and make an announcement, though I've been at Artfire for a good long while. They can shut me down all they want, I haven't spent any money there in ages.
I also posted a blog entry about this in my own blog, which could use some comments pretty please.
http://divapixie.blogspot.com/2010/10/etsy-and-coralgate-scandal.html

G33K GODDESS said...

After closing my shop - I'd like to report that I feel like someone whose chains of bondage have been broken. I don't have to worry about being deleted, muted, shut down, or attacked by simpering idiot cupcakes. I no longer feel the need to flush my money down the can 20 cents at a time, all for a corporation that has done nothing but sabotage me and get in the way of my success. Freedom feels great.

Just sayin'

SusanA said...

1. For all those who say- I can't leave etsy- I have my business there-
Start a website, an artfire shop, leave the etsy shop open while you transistion. Then promo the AF shop or website.
If you have established customers, they'll follow you, offer a coupon etc for shopping in your new store- yes coupons are Easy on AF.
If people are using search, well the whole world will see and can buy without belonging to Etsy. And without paying .20 to renew every couple of days.

2. Etsy's weather report would make more sense YOY(Sept 2009 to Sept 2010)- month by month doesn't make sense. Can you really compare Jan to Dec?
I get the feeling Etsy is counting renewals in there new items, it all means the same to them. It just means people are paying more to list the same items.
Traffic is good but how much of the traffic is not sellers who are there everyday? When I was there about 90% of my non-trades where to all fellow sellers. Unless you are selling supplies, it really helps to branch out

notmartha said...

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6661687&page=2


So when did Rob White take off his faux hippie clothes and become the etsy hatchet man?

Where have I been?


ps Is it true that etsy staff gets a bonus when they bring in etsy sellers that used to have a website or a Big Cartel shop?

Anonymous said...

Sandahl here...

Seems the final word is out...

RobWhite says:
I understand that your continued frustration, and your want for the article to be removed. When this matter was first discussed on the Forums, we told you that we would discuss it internally, and we have done so. Our response was subsequently posted in the Announcements forum, linked in most if not all of the threads discussing this topic:
http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6658218

I understand that it may not be satisfactory to some, but this is the extent of comments that we have to make in this matter.
Posted at 12:28 pm, October 22, 2010 ET

The Funny One said...

As we all know by now, Etsy puts up a wall of silence when any criticism is aimed at an employee-by-name. Instead of doing what any ethical co. would do, which is fire the employee who put them at such risk and remove the article, Etsy goes to the extreme and publicly supports the employee IN PRINT and continues to allow her/him to run amok on the site without supervision.

Etsy always reacts like a teenage clique and quickly form a ring of protection around their over-paid Admins because they refuse to admit any mistake, small or large.

Many of us are at this bottom line - it's 100% obvious that Etsy hates most of its sellers, period. Respect is not in their volcabulary.

I especially appreciate all the comments here that ask sellers to stop buying on Etsy and to close up shop and move elsewhere. We need to take action, be forceful, and stop supporting a company that has, by and large, ruined handmade, decimated the reputation of handmade, and flushed prices down the walmart toilet.

I used to buy all my supplies on Etsy (a big chunk of $$$) but stopped in 2009; now I buy direct from the sellers own websites or on Artfire.

G33K GODDESS said...

Well Etsy really shipped up a shitstorm this time... For all of those brave souls who are leaving as I am, I want you to know, THERE IS SUPPORT FOR YOU. We are regrouping here:

http://etsyrefugeesociety.blogspot.com

Emotional support and DEPROGRAMMING is now available!! If you're ready to put down the Kool-Aid, we are here to help you through the transition!!

WindysDesigns said...

I just can't see on any level how they thought this article was even a remotely good idea.

Etsy claims "Our aim in publishing this blog post was to raise awareness and provoke reflection about an under-recognized issue."

Other than the article title, and a link to a petition, where exactly is the information regarding the issue? Had the article not encouraged or mentioned any petition, it could simply be explained as raising awareness (clinging to the hind tit of the of the obvious promotional whoring intent), as one would most likely be prompted into doing some research for themselves and thereby forming their own opinion on the matter.

Would Etsy feature some vegan personality who not only gave themselves a huge promotional plug, but also encouraged the signing of a petition to boycott the purchase of leather goods?

What about an organic farmer who presented a petition to boycott the purchase of any food or cosmetic product that was not certified organic?

Causes are great, and for individuals to post these kinds of articles is all well and good. But for an entity that represents thousands of different mindsets, it is unwise to even appear to take a stand that may cause divisiveness within it's community, or cause harm or cast suspicion on one of it's subsets.

Posting a disclaimer that the opinion of one of their blog post authors doesn't necessarily reflect the company's views is a sure sign that a significant portion of the community attached to the company will find the article offensive and potentially harmful to their business.

The Storque is not an independently owned blog, it represents a selling venue and as such has a responsibility to it's sellers to respect the diverse perspectives within it's community.

uglytoo said...

RobW = mushmouth

AbsintheDragonfly said...

I just finished opening disputes with Paypal for my Etsy fees, and the ones that are over 45 days, I have contacted my bank about.

ohnoetsy said...

@notmartha

This is the second time in 3 days I have read about etsy employees having to bring in new sellers.

It's becoming obvious that's what the investors want.

Makes sense that teenangster tweets her work day away with great new websites and big cartel sites she shops on.

HOWDY said...

sound familiar????

"lisajune
Etsy Admin
lisajune says:
You're welcome to discuss any angle of the coral article recently run on our blog, here: http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6659297

This would be the most appropriate place for a petition. That said, as noted by Rob White earlier today, we have weighed all sides of and responded to the concerns that were brought forward concerning this post. You can find what we have to offer to this conversation, here: http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6658218

I understand that it may not be satisfactory to some, but this is the extent of comments that we have to make in this matter. :

Lisa June / RobWhite / who gives a shit it's all about covering their co-workers asses.

Razor said...

The notes about abuse above remind me of this article I ran into recently:

http://issendai.livejournal.com/572510.html

Rule 1: Keep them too busy to think.

Rule 2: Keep them tired

Rule 3: Keep them emotionally involved

(it goes on...)

The key thing about this article is the title is 100% correct. Etsy has not gotten better in the 3 years I've been around - they've gotten worse and worse. The weird part is how every employee they bring in seems to be a clone of the others?

Muted but not silent Maureen said...

Page 575 of coral consolidated thread Rokali speaks. *sigh*
For me, it's "can open-worms everywhere". I cannot get them back in the can no matter how hard I try. After what I've seen over there during the last week, and what was done to me and many others, the thread closing etc- I realized when I saw his post that for me this cannot be undone. That pig is too ugly to look better with a little lipstick. I might have a little respect if I saw major firings (or firing squads) and full admission of the horrible way this was handled. Total restructuring. But they seem to think they can just hide their bad policies and inability to make good decisions and it will eventually go away? It is all out there and everyone is starting to see it clearly. Etsy is so over. It was a beautiful dream...

Amenhotep IV said...

Rokali crawled out of the pit and commented on page 575 and 580 of the consolidated thread.

Whack said...

Apparently the staff is a bunch of yes men, or they don't vet each other at all. they'd be laughed out of any serious writing venue. These guys will have a job as long as they can get their buds to cover for them, and until somebody actually rolls a few heads and acts like a professional manager.
Can't wait to see where these fools will be in ten years. Maybe writing advertising copy for Target?

KnewIT said...

Rokali
Etsy Admin
Rokali says:
DesignedByLucinda says:
I am going to pitch Juliet to let some of us post a rebuttal-type blog post that gently corrects the facts while reminding buyers most Etsy sellers are ethical and if in doubt about the sourcing of any of our materials, please ASK us first.

--------
Rokali says

"
I have otherwise been uninvolved with this situation. I know everything comes back to me on the outside, but inside Etsy, it's really important that people own what they're doing. "Make everyone the CEO of something," as they say."

So,anarchy is the rule at Etsy. What a fucked up way to run a business. Rokali should have gotten over that whole 'anarchy' fixation by the time he was out of high school. What a jerk, what a lousy CEO, what a lousy manager, and what a lousy person to have so much power over so many sellers and so little over his own staff.

1kmRefugee said...

After living through the total lie of the 1000markets /bonanza fiasco ("your listings will be transferred & all of your 1km links will be forwarded to your bonanza store! It will be seamless!") I can't recommend promoting any venue directly.

Every single 1km link is now either dead or goes to the bonanza front page; that's years worth of hundreds of artists' promotional efforts just gone. Printed materials, ads, every linked mention of every 1km shop from day one... Poof!

If you don't have your own domain, get one and use it. Forward it to your shop of choice and promote that only; promoting any venue directly doesn't build your brand & can be gone in a click.

Escaped from Cult of Etsy said...

Is it just me, or did anyone else notice that most of the people who defend Etsy are fairly new with under 100 sales? It occurs to me that Etsy is for hobby-sellers ONLY, and that is how they run it. Sellers who have been at all successful are the ones who are shouting for better treatment, because Etsy makes it damn near impossible to run a successful business. You can't get any answers, the site is down frequently, emails are not sent, changes are made haphazardly leaving sellers scrambling to deal with it, and I will not even start on the whole search engine/front page favoritism popularity contests/feedback crap. They have no solid plan, no direction. Just a bunch of silly kids. So that is who that site is for- If we want to grow a business, and make a living from it as Rokali said, then we need to enter the grown-up world of e-commerce and not relay on a bunch of silly children to do it for us. In the real world, who has the power to shut your store down completely without warning whenever they want to? No warning, no "lets work on this together", nothing. Just "we will show you to talk mean to us". This is not doing business, this is playing at doing business. What works at your lemonade stand will not work for me anymore, Rokali (who doesn't show his real name and has no credibility).

eclipse said...

RobWhite says:
I understand that it may not be satisfactory to some, but this is the extent of comments that we have to make in this matter.
Posted at 12:28 pm, October 22, 2010 ET

And then later that night, Rokali posted twice in the Coral thread.

Robwhite: "This is our final word and we're not going to say anything else!!!"

RobBlack: "Oh Hi there, what's all this fuss about Coral? I disavow any responsibility for the Storque, my staff are each a CEO of their own shit and I have no idea what's going on in my company."

another 1km refugee said...

I agree,if I learned anything from being screwed by 1km it is not to ever expect anything,including human decency from any venue.They are in it to make money and they don't give a shit about sellers.I second "get your own domain".Point it to wherever you like but promote your own site!

Kalin's Winky said...

@Escaped

Yes, it's a well known cycle. I think people were summing that up in the Etsy News days. It goes like

1> Etsy is great! People complaining are horrible. Defend Etsy staunchly.
2> Start to question flaws in Etsy's behavior or features, almost in a startled way.
3> Join others in stating Etsy is doing things wrong. Act as if they are ever changing anything.

For some people, it goes to
4> Leave Etsy in disgust

while most everyone else is ternally stuck in step 3. For them, it's
4> Go to 3

Anonymous said...

"Sounds like E is getting ready to sell the whole mall to some big conglomerate and is trying to drive people out without getting sued because of it...
? "

You know....they corralled all the coral dissenters in one thread and buried all the other stuff....now the forums are full of cupcakes and like minded hipsters who think it's PI to dress as an Indian for Halloween. You could be so very right....lose the troublemakers, point at the long list of "problem children"...they've got it all under damage control.....for when Daddy Warbucks steps in..?!

Bijoutiful said...

Just wanted to say that ART JEWELRY MAGAZINE responded to my tweet on Saturday. I was told they are aware of the discussion, thanked for thinking of them, and subsequently asked for MY take on the matter.

Someone is listening.

bess said...

just wanted to pop in about the "Offer to write a blog post" comment...

Just in case you were unaware, the offers were meant sarcastically (well, at least most of them)

Most of us were trying to make a point that was born in another thread about how if etsy wanted an article on the subject why go off etsy for it?

As there are plenty of people on etsy who could have written the article with more knowledge research and sensitivity to the etsy community.

It was a shot at treating the community like naughty children instead of respecting them like customers and business owner/partners. We need to be preached at and not listened to apparently.

communitymember said...

I'm glad to hear that, bess. Sellers do so much unpaid work for Etsy that I guess I missed the sarcasm in the blog-writing offers (so hard to detect tone in posts :)).

Just saw a hilarious video on the subject by Eeklips here: http://www.xtranormal.com/watch/7567831/.

eclipse said...

3 more sellers have been muted for the coralgate threads. Sandesign, surrenderdorothy, and bijoutiful were muted just within the past week, fully 5 weeks AFTER the alleged violations took place. Etsy is using this as an excuse for forum cleansing, and I expect a lot more mutings are still to come.