8.06.2015

Buzzworthy

I don't know why but a recent Etsy email irked me, although I couldn't quite put my finger on it. I know it started with the email subject being "Buzzworthy" - and it didn't seem like something I'd expect from Etsy. I guess I feel like Etsy has stuff for everyone, all the niches, and everyone does their own thing. I get that there are trends but I felt like Etsy was kind of "for everyone".



So at first I thought, "It's Etsy. How dare they try to sell specific stuff they chose to me." But that's why I get these emails, right? To see stuff they feature, to introduce me to new Etsy sellers and products? If so, what's wrong with "Buzzworthy" as the title?  I think it's because it makes them sound more cool-hunting than I originally thought them to be. It makes them seem more fast-fashion than I think they want to seem. More cycles of stuff to contend with, just like regular retail. Like, I don't mind their staff picking out what they think is cool, or looking at an Etsy treasury (do those still exist?) -- but "buzzworthy" makes me feel like they're telling me what I should want to buy.

The truth of it is, they have been telling me what to buy with these featured product emails all along. I think this word just jumped out at me and made me finally realize how much Etsy is like so many other retailers. I know I have a post a while back about the holiday Buy Handmade pledge -- I don't believe handmade is always the answer for functional stuff, and sometimes the quality just isn't there with some newbie vendors but it gets celebrated anyway because it's handmade, which I think is BS. So while it's great to be buying handmade on Etsy, it's still more stuff and it doesn't get a free pass. It's still consumption. And maybe I forgot that for a little while.

The TL;DR: Etsy is retail and it tries to sell you crap.

9 comments:

  1. Recently upon going through my closet, I noticed that a lot of what I was giving away was stuff I got at the thrift store and had take more of a flyer on, whereas the stuff I had spent more money on, bought at full retail, etc. tended to remain. It made me realize that while I convince myself that I am "saving money" by getting some things at thrift stores, really it is a lie I tell myself since many of those purchases are the first to go and the last to be used.

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    1. I recently had the same realization! They just fit better and were more versatile. The exception were some thrift things that fit the same fit/material/style as the newer retail stuff by some odd chance (maybe recent seasons or a fluke.)

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  2. The word "buzzworthy" so often means "nonsense none of us should bother with."

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  3. I unsubscribed to Etsy sending me emails, all I buy off Etsy are zines and Retirement Fund patches and they kept sending me those 'buzzworthy' emails with whimsical pictures of jewelry and housewares, popular stuff on Etsy I could really care less about. If I find something I think is cool then I appreciate Etsy for that, I don't need them to customer service me into a purchase either.

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    1. I should probably do the same but - embarrassingly - I have FOMO, thinking I'll find something handmade that I actually need that I wouldn't know about otherwise. I find Etsy so hard to search for quality items.

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  4. I get why people support handmade, but also totally agree that handmade consumption is still consumption, and if it's not as good quality, there is really no point in buying it.

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  5. Ugh. I don't like those emails either. I think it's because I want more than average from them. Plus, I never really like what they choose for me.

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