Update: people are beginning to migrate from the (myspace )I mean – etsy. Here is a page attempting to list their new shops and venues. And other are protesting it all.
The place has always had resellers; people breaking the rules to pass off mass-produced stuff as handmade.
There’s a lot of money to be had from people who want to NOT support corporations, who want to buy local, handmade stuff. A lot of people don’t like buying things that were made for pennies by slave labor. Lots of companies know that, and will lie about how their stuff was made, to get that dollar.
The people who produce things with slave labor want that dollar, too.
“Former eBay and PayPal executive Stephanie Tilenius has joined the Board of Directors of Etsy, joining Etsy founder Rob Kalin, FlickR’s Caterina Fake, Union Square Ventures’ Fred Wilson, and Accel Partners’ Jim Breyer (also on Walmart.com.’s board) on the board. Tilenius left eBay last year and now heads Google’s commerce division.”
So they invaded etsy (and a few other places) and have been trying for a while now to find ways to successfully sell to people who don’t want to buy from them. Recently, an attempt to pass off furniture built in Bali as “handmade in CA” was busted. The thing is- etsy isn’t supposed to be a place to buy factory-made goods being resold. Its own mission statement says that buying direct from people who are making things by hand, not in factories, is the point.
I signed up there because of that but now…well, the fact that when confronted with a (GIANT SHITPILE OF) evidence, including an email from the man who actually makes the furniture, that the stuff is not produced in CA, and that the original seller is a fraud, etsy chose not to apologize, not to admit fault and remove the seller—but to close discussions about it and deny. (note- the fraudulent seller? is not only still open, but still in their list of “featured sellers”)
So, I’m in the process of migrating. (check out my home page- new links to my stuff for now! All my rocks, sticks, logs, and moss will stay on etsy- but anything I made, art, paintings and stuff- originals- has been moved. still debating whether to keep my prints there or not, my “production work”)