Stop Etsy from ruining the photo quality for small shops and ignoring our complaints
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We the undersigned call on Etsy to immediately improve its photo quality, and to stop ignoring the hundreds of requests and complaints that small shop owners have sent to them.
When I set up my shop on the 11th of February, I was absolutely thrilled. I had delayed the opening of the shop so I could recruit my friends to model for me - borrowing professional lights and a DSLR camera to make sure the photos were the best that they could be. It took me almost a full week to edit the images, and I was exhausted, but very proud of the work I had produced.
The next day, when I had a look at my shop, I noticed that my photos were blurry and pixelated. They looked dull and amateurish. I was absolutely devastated, and felt ashamed that the viewers I had on the day of the launch had seen such awful pictures. I immediately sent a complaint to Etsy. They replied back with a template email with suggestions to improve my photos, despite the fact that the problem was clearly with their website. I persisted, and eventually I was told that the problem was being "sent to the engineers".
That was on the 14th of February.
I sell scarves (and knitwear is seasonal), and as it got closer and closer to Spring I started to panic. As a sufferer of chronic fatigue, chronic pain and mental health problems, it took a great deal of courage and energy to start a small business on my own. Those photos were my shop window - my only means of attracting customers to my shop. They represent my product, my brand, and me. I thought that Etsy was perfect for me - a caring, considerate and compassionate community where everyone was given an equal chance to succeed. I felt let down, depressed and disheartened, and my health suffered.
Eventually, a couple of days ago, Etsy directed me to a forum, where they were supposedly "updating the issue". There, I found hundreds of shop sellers saying the exact same thing - "Please fix my photos". There were stories of sellers switching to Shopify, items waiting to be listed, businesses tanking and many many sellers reporting feeling depressed, anxious and tired of waiting for Etsy to do something - when they were clearly not interested in helping any of us.
From the forum, I learned that the issue was systemic - the photos used to be great, and now they're terrible, and there's nothing that we can do. Etsy has been closing down other threads relating to the issue and redirecting them to the forum. They posted 5 days ago saying that they had fixed the issue, but nobody yet has reported a fix. A more pessimistic theory is this: that Etsy will continue ignoring our complaints and emails until everyone gives up out of exhaustion. We cannot allow this to happen.
Etsy businesses live and die on the quality of their pictures. By drastically reducing photo quality, Etsy is damaging our sales.
We must not allow Etsy to continue sacrificing small shops in favour of more profitable ones.
Please sign to save our shops.
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