(a sort of addendum to last week’s post)
As a small business supporter and small business owner, this SHOP SAFE Act is troubling. In gist, the bill is meant to hold online marketplaces accountable when they sell counterfeits. My understanding is that the individual sellers (no matter where you sell online!) have to bear the burden of jumping through extra hoops to prove the goods they provide are not fakes. It’s unnecessary and invasive and could hurt the smaller platforms and small businesses.
I have already seen once small and reputable platforms like Etsy get inundated with literal junk; since inception, Etsy has been known to be a marketplace for sellers who create their own products or sell vintage items. Those were the rules. Now there are countless shops with stock photos and oddly worded descriptions and less than stellar reviews because the shopper did not get the product as advertised. Many of these shops claim China as their home base. Not really a problem, but what ain’t cool is that many shops claiming to sell handmade products are getting their not-so-goods from a factory. So a company selling mass produced items can say they’re handmade and made in America! It is quite deceiving and frustrating. This is a major issue if you’re searching for a quality, locally made item and twenty non-handmade, non-American made listings pop up. Plus you know they’re usually much cheaper.
These shops are like a virus and I don’t understand how so many got approved to sell on Etsy (I’m guessing money), but Etsy is looking like a baby Amazon these days. And maybe that is what it will take to survive in such a popular, competitive space.
I am all for weeding out the fake when shopping online, but I’m not for weeding out the little guys because they can’t compete with Amazon.