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Thu Jan 27 2011 20:08:24

Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Didn't Make?

By: Ina Steiner
Sponsored Link
Subject: Why does Etsy not care that sellers are not making the good they sell?

Dear Ina,
My question is, why does Etsy not care that sellers buy an eBay and resale on Etsy for outrageous prices?

We have reported one seller twice complete with items and have heard nothing back. The seller is even so bold as to reuse the pictures from eBay.

We have one concrete example and others are obvious (I.e. the "props" used are ones used by eBay sellers).
Thanks,
Ed




Comments (18) | Permalink
Readers Comments

Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Jay
       
Thu Jan 27 21:51:32 2011
The reason etsy doesn't care is because they've been hit with the Ebay bug. Greed and love of higher profits has helped them turn a blind eye to the products now flooding the etsy site. A perfect example are items made in remote third world country villages, purchased for pennies by someone with a little knowledge, computer access and money and resold on etsy as "handmade" for a nice profit. I sell on etsy and am finding it more and more difficult to compete with this type of seller who buys the products they sell on etsy.  Etsy used to be a really great, well policed site that maintained a level of purity which has long ago vanished.
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: uncle rico
       
Fri Jan 28 00:01:50 2011
I can understand your annoyance with the issue, but wouldn't your energy be better spent on your business?

PS - It's resell, not 'resale'
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Hilda
       
Fri Jan 28 00:23:22 2011
Because Etsy is no longer following their original goals of giving artists a place to start a business.

Ever since VC monies moved in, it is all about the bottom line...and resellers move huge amounts of merchandise, thus providing a larger FVF revenue.

The early idealistic premise of Etsy died a long time ago.

And uncle rico, get off your high horse! The little guy on Etsy who made the site grow in its first 2 or 3 years, has been thrown under the bus for the sake of the almighty dollar, and you know it!
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Digby
       Web Site
Fri Jan 28 00:33:01 2011
That's probably why Artfire seems to be going from strength to strength.

Big corporate money does not do hand made!


Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: suezque This user has validated their user name.
       
Fri Jan 28 09:17:01 2011
Not sure if the other bloggers know that etsy does not charge a FVF (final value fee) on sales.  Also, they have a vintage category where items need not be handmade, criteria for this is at least 20 yrs old.  As far as cheap imports being sold, passing for handmade, you see that at every craft show anyway.  There'll always be those of no artistic talent that try to pass off others work as their own.  One striking difference between etsy and ebay is that most etsyians I've encountered work together to promote each other, and are not cutthroat and petty like quite a few ebayers have become.  
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Katiyana
       
Fri Jan 28 09:26:58 2011
"etsy does not charge a FVF (final value fee) on sales"

That is incorrect, Etsy's FVF is as shown below:

"When an item sells, there's a 3.5% transaction fee on the final sale price (not including shipping). If your shop currency is not USD, the transaction fee will be 3.5% of the item price converted to USD at the time of the purchase."
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Jodi
       
Fri Jan 28 13:27:53 2011
Etsy allows sellers to sell vintage items. That is part of what makes them so cool --- most people who buy and sell art & handmade goods - are also into re-using and reappropriating - which is wonderful all the way around.
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Funny bone
       
Fri Jan 28 16:57:48 2011
I personally do not understand the hype of esty.  I have yet to sell even ONE item and it has now been over 3 months.

Yet I am a silver seller on ebay with the SAME items (granted plus over 1200 more), and I only have like 15-20 items on Esty  but I am not willing to put up more without any sales.  I also make sales on Bonanza and I even sold two items on ecrater within my first 2 weeks, but not even ONE thing on Esty.

So I am NOT impressed with Esty at all.  Although the people do seem much nicer than ebay.  But then again even prison gang members seem nicer than many of the sellers on ebay..

ebay sellers will steal your shirt off your back and then try to turn YOU in for a violation.
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless
       
Fri Jan 28 17:52:38 2011
Want the old Etsy back? Then leave the new one. Venture capitalists don't like failing marketplaces.
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless
       
Fri Jan 28 21:16:43 2011
This is as good a place as many to remind sellers that sooner or later all third party selling venues with investors will begin operating in its own interests which will diverge from your yours.

When that happens, sellers should vote with their feet. That's what tyrannical corporations fear the most.

Just remember that these changes are typically made incrementally like ebafia did, and we frogs ended up cooked.

The time to get out is when the FIRST sign is detected.
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: mollyphoenix
       
Sat Jan 29 00:53:47 2011
Ouch! It's prickly in here...This is obviously a hot button topic. I would like to believe that if you report items on Etsy they will be taken down if they are not inline with Terms of Use. However, it seems like it is up to the Admin to pull items/accounts/users at their own discretion. It is funny to see the forums ablaze and next thing you know some poor gal gets her shop closed. I guess that is more tragic than funny.

Artfire has a seemingly fairer approach. If your item is flagged they send you an email telling you the item has been flagged and if it happens XX more times than there are consequences. I suppose if you upset the wrong GROUP of people they could gang up on you and make it a real pain in the bum to have a shop.

I  have a vintage and a hand made shop on Etsy. I have been using the site since 2006 and it is like night and day. It was a delightful, yet clunky, site to create a personalized shop to sell my handmade goods without having to design a website, pay for hosting, open a credit card processing account and all the rest.

I get bummed when I see 3 year old items passing as vintage and stuff made by a 9 year old chained to a post passing as hand made by the seller. I get even more bummed when people buy them.

I feel the focus of Etsy is shifting and the frogs are cooking. On the other side of the coin I am selling my vintage stuff and I know I can always say to a customer ''Go to Etsy and search for blah blah blah.''  and they will find me.

Kudos to the Etsy founders for being in the right place at the right time. How many other businesses can say they are doing as well as Etsy is in this Brave New Economy? That's not a bank. :(

Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Digby
       Web Site
Sat Jan 29 12:25:05 2011
@Ming

You are so right, once the corporates take over, that's the time to get out.


Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: ang
       
Sat Jan 29 13:53:14 2011
I love Etsy. I sell vintage on Etsy and make sales every single day. They allow things that are not handmade under their vintage category and I am pretty thrilled about that. To all those who are having a bad time selling, there is a trick to it. You have to list every day. List every day and you will be on the top of the search and you will start selling. As for the OP, buying low from one place and selling high at another is the way business works and always has. What's the problem? I'm sure the OP practices the same formula. If you are selling something whether you made it or not, you are marking up the price to profit. Otherwise you would make no money. Why is it okay if you do it but not others? I find deals on Ebay all the time and resell on my other venues. I guess I don't get your point. You're upset because business people are doing what they have done for hundreds of years? Of course using someone else's images is terrible but it seems like you're upset about people making money. I'm not trying to be rude but why would you continue to sell if you don't like the model of "buy low sell high"? That's the very foundation of what we all do? Things that are not handmade should be listed under the proper categories and should not be passed off as something they are not, but that doesnt seem to be what you have an issue with. Am I wrong?
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: summer in the city
       
Sat Jan 29 16:53:47 2011
What starts with an E and ends with a y ? Ebay.
And Etsy.

Again, Ming speaks the truth:

''This is as good a place as many to remind sellers that sooner or later all third party selling venues with investors will begin operating in its own interests which will diverge from your yours.''

Last night, I was reading the Etsy forum thread on the new email address import feature. (Seems like an unpopular idea.) One seller spoke up in support of Etsy: she had previously been featured in Etsy's ''Quit Your Day Job'' series, and said that she was grateful for Etsy because three years ago, she couldn't have imagined being able to work from home and support herself and her children.

Reading those words gave me a sad, sick feeling. Those were the exact words we used to hear from Ebay sellers, encouraged by Ebay to make careers of their Ebay  businesses, reassured that their futures were golden with Ebay. So they did. Then, when Donahoe marched in, we all witnessed the heartbreaking aftermath.

Poor little fool. She's hitching her future to the whims of a few Brooklyn hipsters who now owe millions in venture capital. That's a lot of potholders.

Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Fruity This user has validated their user name.
       
Mon Jan 31 11:34:50 2011
because Etsy overseers are a bunch of hypocrites. They just want sellers to build up their catalog so they can bring in the high end boutique designers
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: anti-em
       
Tue Feb 1 18:31:48 2011
So I am NOT impressed with Esty at all.  Although the people do seem much nicer than ebay.  But then again even prison gang members seem nicer than many of the sellers on ebay..
--------------

LOL! So true.

Though just as many of us left Ebay years ago, some of the recent changes at Etsy have long term sellers casting about for another  new selling site. It looks like Etsy is trying to become facebook or whists, or stylehive or kaboodle. It's all about hearting and liking and browsing these days and substantially less about buying and selling. For active sellers this is a MAJOR RED FLAG.
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Siobhan
       
Fri Feb 11 17:53:34 2011
For a good laugh, take a look at regretsy.com. Not only is it a site, (they give all of its profits to charity, it also gives to Etsy sellers who are in need) it is also a book. It is full of the outrageous things that are sold on Etsy.
The report on CNN about the store that sold the rape cards and mocked people with Down's Syndrome, I saw that weeks before and wondered how Etsy could get away with allowing such hate filled items to be sold. In fact, I reported to them another store with similar distasteful items, only to get a message back from them saying in so many words that I'm a Neanderthal when it comes to art. I guess it took CNN to broadcast it to the world, to give Etsy a black eye, that this is what is allowed in their site.
Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did   Why Does Etsy Allow Sellers to List Items They Did
by: Witch Hunt
       
Sat Feb 12 06:19:49 2011
This may be shocking news to some of you, but just because somebody re-uses a stock photo does not mean they are re-selling an item....What?!! Yeah, its true. There are people who make or design their own items, real creative talent, and they are given photos by people asking them to make something, and they use the photo they were given and make their own rendition of the design.

Using a stock photo that you see on Ebay is not definitive proof of being a reseller. Depending on the nature of the shop, it may or may not be suspicious, but its really not proof of anything just because they are making a copy of a popular item.

Also, stock photos have different rules than other creative art. A lot of people assume that using stock photos is the same as copying an essay or using a private photo and cropping it and using it for a logo....This is not necessarily the case. There has to be something strikingly original to be protected at all, and often it has been ruled that generic stock photos are not protected if they are used to sell a similar item BUT if you use an original art that isnt your own to CREATE a stock photo, then you could get sued. Its all very confusing, but there are a lot of misconceptions about what you can sue somebody for....its a lot less than many are lead to believe. There is the simplistic answer that might seem technically correct, and then there is what you can actually do, and using stock photos has been ruled on hundreds of times and is perfectly ok most of the time. It might seem like it wouldnt be, but you are likely protected unless you take it out of context for your own unique work, and then it might be protected for being original in its own right, but it depends. Stuff that is in the public domain is open to satire, but a commercial logo might not qualify.



But seriously, stop the witch hunts. A stock photo only proves that somebody was lazy with a posting. It does not definitively prove that somebody is a reseller.




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