I’ve had a very interesting time today reading some, ah, unofficial information about Etsy.? The official Etsy communiques like to make it sound like everything is sunshine and rainbows and unicorns and cute little kittens.? If you go digging a bit, though, you find there is a seething cesspool underneath.
Since I don’t hang out in the Etsy forums, I don’t hear about a lot that goes on.? But the recent saga of a certain “lampworker” who was discovered to be actually buying other lampworkers’ work and reselling it as her own beads caught my eye.? She was doing this on Etsy, in clear and incontrovertible violation of Etsy’s standards — yet it took several weeks, a huge outcry from real lampworkers (and a boycott from some), and some real negative publicity for them to shut her store down.? Apparently she was a big enough revenue source for Etsy that they dragged their feet in their investigation.? Sad, when you hear about how fast they have been to shut down other sellers without such thorough investigation.
So first eBay goes in the toilet as a sales venue for independent artisans, now Etsy looks like it’s trying hard to head down the same highway to Hell.? It’s not done a lot for me, that’s for sure — the tiny little side-biz lampworker just trying to sell a few beads and pendants between the two or three shows I do a year.? Unless you spend a lot of time trying to game the system, you get lost.? Add to that a mediocre website and a deteriorating reputation, and I have to wonder if this really is a good venue for me.? Perhaps it’s time to begin investigating the competition…again.