EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2734 - February 07, 2012     3 of 4

Etsy Cracks Down on Questionable Shops

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Etsy told sellers on Monday that it was cracking down on questionable shops and resellers. Its Marketplace Integrity and Trust & Safety teams (known internally as MITS) have been working on initiatives the company outlined in June, and asked its community of users for assistance.

The goals of the MITS teams are to ensure that all of the shops and items listed on Etsy meet policies and "ensure that buyers and sellers treat one another with respect." Etsy said it has continued to invest in technology to automatically identify questionable accounts more quickly and accurately (see this 2010 post on its SCRAM program). Thanks to new tools, Etsy is identifying two-and-a-half times more questionable accounts and its MITS team, with six new members, is reviewing seven times more accounts overall each week.

Etsy said almost 1,300 members from around the world report shops and listings every week, and it encouraged users to report listings that were not in compliance with its marketplace rules.

Etsy explained that its process of dealing with reports might include contacting sellers to understand who is involved in their shop and how their items are produced, from raw materials to finished products. Resellers are a major bone of contention on Etsy in the Handmade category, which requires every item to be made by the seller listing the item.

Etsy's announcement about its Marketplace Integrity and Trust & Safety teams on Monday generated much discussion on its board.

About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to

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