Shortly after the IPO in 2015, a group of investors filed a class action lawsuit against Etsy claiming fraud. The suit claimed that Etsy's CEO and officers failed to disclose numerous problems with the site which could affect the stock price, among them that "more than 5 percent of all merchandise for sale on Etsy’s website may be either counterfeit or constitute trademark or copyright infringement” and that “brands are increasingly pursuing sellers on Etsy for trademark or copyright infringement, jeopardizing listing fees and commissions." The suit also claimed that Etsy management knew of the rampant trademark and copyright infringement but did little to stop it, and in fact worked to hide this information from potential investors.
Cover Verse: For a wonderful Sister Hope the sweetest moments of your birthday live on as memories that warm your tomorrows... Hope each happy wish being made for you finds its way to your doorstep... Hope the dreams of your heart big and small all come true... Inside Verse: ...and hope you always know what a wonderful sister you are. Happy Birthday
The site was launched in 2005 by iospace, a small company composed of Robert Kalin, Chris Maguire, and Haim Schoppik. The initial version had taken two and a half months to build. Later Jared Tarbell joined the team. Former NPR executive Maria Thomas joined as COO in 2008, was promoted to CEO and left Etsy in December 2009. Robert Kalin resumed his role as CEO from December 2009 until July 2011. Investors include Sean Meenan, Albert Wenger, Spencer and Judson Ain, Union Square Ventures, and founders of Flickr and Delicious.
There’s so much to love about our funny, cute, and photo upload cards, but we also have hundreds of designs from our favourite brands. From Batman and Spiderman to Wonder Women and The Incredible Hulk, we have all the best action heroes. There’s also tons of Star Wars and Game of Thrones birthday cards and a wide range of birthday cards for kids with Frozen, Trolls, Paddington, and The Little Mermaid.
Etsy is popular as a side-business, as well as a place to buy goods made from recycled and upcycled materials, along with less expensive or more unusual versions of mass-produced items. The unique nature of many of the items for sale is part of their appeal to some shoppers. Product photos on Etsy tend to be editorial or artistic instead of commercial catalog style. Sellers can add tags to their products to help buyers find them, and buyers can choose to search for items available locally. Etsy staffers publish lists of featured items.
In 2011, in an effort to add social networking features to Etsy, the company implemented features that allowed users to search other users' buying histories and to trace their purchasing transactions. Etsy thought this feature would allow Etsy users to connect to individuals with similar buying and/or selling histories and an automatic opt-in was applied to all users without the attainment of prior permission. Users of the service raised concerns over the feature's violation of privacy rights, but an official response was not released by the company.
Much of the information we learn from investigations can’t be shared with the larger community out of respect for the privacy of the seller being investigated, so there is a natural divergence between what the community sees when they report a seller and what we see as we go deeper on the case. … [T]here are times when available public evidence suggests that a violation of our policy is clear, and our investigations find that it’s actually not the case.