No, not everything is good.

Hanging around Etsy is a unique view into the human psyche.

There seems to be this prevailing weird idea that all items are equally good, just because they paid the same amount to be listed. And the people who either don't produce a quality or unique product or are overlooked due to crowding in their category get really pissed off that they don't have the same opportunities for free promotion that some of the better artisans have.

Etsy offers paid advertising in the form of "showcases". These are daily rotating galleries of items, all of which have paid to be there. Anyone can buy one - but they aren't very effective.

Free promotion comes in the form of treasuries (curated by Etsy members), Gift Guide spots, and Featured Seller artices (selected by Etsy admins).

Some treasuries get listed on the front page, which is fantastic exposure. Featured seller articles run on the front page for a while.

Now, here's what I find amusing about all of this. People who make stuff which hasn't caught admin's eye get pissed - they complain that it's "unfair". That the front page should be filled with random selectees, to let everyone have their "fair share" of exposure.

Given the item distribution on Etsy, a "random" selection of items would probably include mass-produced supplies, sketchy vintage stuff, handmade junk that people can't foist off on their families anymore, and crude or poorly thought out items alongside a few really nice things. How could that possibly create a positive impression of the site?

Damned right not fair. And it shouldn't be fair. For the same reasons Kmart is more likely to highlight their Martha Stewart collection than their Winnie the Pooh sweatshirts, Etsy wants to highlight the items which they think will draw people further into the site.

The stark fact is that some things are better than others. Some photography, some ceramic, some knitting. Any category has top artists for its other practitioners to look to and strive towards becoming. Working hard is not enough - it's the product, not the process.

Really, really tired of hearing people whine about how they aren't getting what they believe is coming to them. Entitlement is a bitch.


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