IMPORTANT: "YOU ARE NOT BUYING DIRECTLY FROM ETSY, BUT FROM ONE OF THE MANY TALENTED SELLERS ON ETSY;
ETSY DOES NOT PRE-SCREEN SELLERS AND THEREFORE DOES NOT GUARANTEE OR ENDORSE ANY ITEMS SOLD ON ETSY OR ANY CONTENT POSTED BY SELLERS (SUCH AS PHOTOGRAPHS OR LANGUAGE USED IN LISTINGS OR SHOP POLICIES); CAMILLE, ETSY INC.
DO NOT BY FROM ANY ETSY SELLER WHO WILL NOT GIVE RETURNS BEFORE THOROUGHLY CHECKING THEM OUT!
DO NOT BUY FROM SELLERS OUT OF THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES WHO REFUSE TO GIVE RETURNS OR SITE REASONS SUCH AS HYGIENE CONCERNS OR USAGE WITHOUT FIRST CHECKING THEM OUT. MANY SELLARS WHO REFUSE RETURNS ON THESE GROUNDS USE THEM AS AN EXCUSE TO NOT TAKE PRODUCTS BACK EVEN WHEN THEY'VE MADE MISTAKES ON YOUR ORDER. MAKE SURE THAT THINGS LIKE REMOVING AN ITEM FROM THE PACKAGE DOESN'T CONSITUTE "USE" IN THE MIND OF THE SELLER.
REMEMBER, YOU HAVE SOME RECOURSE THROUGH CONSUMER ORGANIZATIONS IF YOU BUY FROM A U.S. VENDOR, THAT RECOURSE RAPIDLY DISAPPEARS WITH VENDORS FROM OUTSIDE THE COUNTRY.
ALWAYS READ MORE THAN THE FIRST FEW REVIEWS. MISTAKES MAY BE FAR AND FEW BETWEEN BUT YOU WANT AT LEAST SOME IDEA OF HOW THEY'RE HANDLED BY THE SELLER. ALSO CHECK THE PROFILES OF THOSE LEAVING THE REVIEW.
DO NOT FOR ONE MINUTE THINK THAT ETSY TRUST AND SAFETY WILL HELP YOU WITH AN ISSUE BE YOU BUYER OR SELLER. IT'S CONSIDERED A FORUM FOR THE INDIVIDUALS TO HASH IT OUT. ETSY WANTS NO PART OF IT EVEN THOUGH UNETHICAL SELLERS ARE A DIRECT REFLECTION ON TH
WATCH OUT USING PAYPAL. I LOVE THE SERVICE AND USE IT ON A REGULAR BASIS, BUT its DISPUTE METHOD AND PURCHASE PROTETCTION AREN'T USEFUL WHEN AN UNETHICAL SELLER IS DETERMINED TO KEEP YOUR MONEY. PAYPAL HAS A PROCESS, BUT CHANCES ARE YOU'VE CONTACTED THE SELLER ALREADY AND THEY'VE VOICED THEIR INTENT NOT TO COMPLY
IF YOU TRULY WANT TO RISK AN OUT OF COUNTRY ORDER OPT FOR CREDIT CARD PAYMENT IF AT ALL POSSIBLE
Now let's get down to business.
This is a call to task for Magic Tribal Hair and Etsy for certain business practices. It pains me to do so because Ive been a shopper on Etsy for several years and have never had to file a dispute with any seller. My dispute against Magic Tribal Hair was registered with Etsy Trust and Safety on July 4,2016 and escalated on July 11,2016. Etsy has yet to supply any real indication whatsoever that they are investigating. I contacted the CEO to no avail. I called the only available number for Etsy and received a message to the effect that they do not take this type of call. I was then referred back to the page where I could request a phone call. This number was currently unavailable. This is a common complaint of sellers and buyers when trying to navigate Etsy's ineffectual dispute system.
With no apparent recourse for my complaint I chose to open a case with the Better Business Bureau. This case was forwarded to Etsy who took 48 hours to respond. As per Camille, Etsy abdicates all responsibility in the matter suggesting it's merely an outlet for many talented sellers. However it's an outlet that attempts to control what is said about the sellers, and frequently pulls down from their forums any identifying information about unethical sellers. They are more than happy to pull down a review that they feel doesn't meet their guidelines and don't seem perturbed by abusive seller responses to a poor revue. All too often the entire content of a forum complaint is missing. You are left with a handful of answers and forced to extrapolate the question. I'll take unethical business practices on the part of Etsy vendors for $1000 Alex!. I have asked repeatedly for someone at Etsy to read the conversations between Magic Tribal Hair and myself. They show quite clearly what lead to my wish to return all purchased items, photographs, excuses and fabrications, hell blatant lies on the part of the seller, and a more real time view of both sides of the issue. Camille was also quite clear in stating the Etsy phone policy. In fact this was what was written in the statement i received from Etsy:
IN THE COMPLAINT, THE CUSTOMER ALSO STATED THAT SHE EXPERIENCED TROUBLE CONTACTING ETSYS CUSTOMER SUPPORT BY PHONE. THE CUSTOMER MAY NOTE THAT ETSY IS ONLY ABLE TO OFFER SUPPORT VIA TELEPHONE THROUGH THE REQUEST A PHONE CALL TOOL. INFORMATION ABOUT THIS TOOL CAN BE FOUND THROUGH THE FOLLOWING HELP PAGE: HTTPS://WWW.ETSY.COM/HELP/ARTICLE/4872
I can't stress this enough. I indicated in my BBB complaint that i called the Etsy number, *******955. From there i was redirected to my case and a request button to click on that wasn't working. I could not make a request for a phone call. These the exact words i used in my BBB complaint:
THE PHONE NUMBER GIVEN DIRECTS YOU BACK TO YOUR COMPLAINT WHERE YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO REQUEST A PHONE CALL FROM ETSY, BUT THIS SERVICE IS UNAVAILABLE.
The entire tone of Etsy's response to my complaint leads me to believe that Etsy Trust and Safety is nothing more than an opportunity for unethical sellers to run out the clock on claims and Etsy refuses to recognize the acts of these sellers is a reflection on them. All Etsy seemed concerned with is not being the one returning my payment. I never asked for that, what i wanted all along was for someone to read the convos. If payment is to be returned i want it to come from Magic Tribal Hair, but apparently all Etsy has to offer is a resolution system that is designed to resolve nothing. As a result I'm left with no choice but to take it into a public forum. So yes, this is about Magic Tribal Hair, but Etsy is included also for its refusal to get involved when a vendor using their service and name takes advantage of a seller or sellers.
So here we go.
The following includes a description of events from the time the order was placed until the present. I have screen grabbed all conversations and am more than happy to supply them. My missive to the CEO is also available. All Better Business Bureau are publically available.
The chain of events is as follows:
On May 22nd and 24th of 2016 I purchased several hair pieces from Magic Tribal Hair through Etsy.
She had many items for sale including hair falls, braids, and yarn dreads. Her Etsy store pages made no mention of textural differences in the Kankelon hair she uses could be associated with color difference, that I should order, taking dye lots into account. Or that multiple items and/or different textured items shouldn't/can't be worn together.
My order was as follows:
1 set of custom 50cm/20" chignon braids
1 custom Gretel hair band
1 set medieval hair falls
All items were ordered in #30 Light Copper.
Through Etsy convos I discussed with the shop owner not only the connector I would like, how I was planning to use it, but the reason I felt the connector I chose would be more than adequate. At no time during these convos, did the seller suggest I use a different connector, that the project I was planning was an impossible flight of fancy, that the hair falls and braided items shouldn't/can't be worn together, that different textures along the same color line are different colors, or the presence of dye lots. All of this would have changed my order.
In subsequent convos there was mention made of her order arriving without the #30 light copper. This happens and I indicated I left me good deal of lead time between my order and when I would actually need the items. There was also something about shipping, but again at the time I wasn't in a particular hurry. Still, no mention was made of color differences and dye lots and I was never asked if I would like to adjust my order accordingly before the project was started.
The braids and head band arrived first. They seemed somewhat dark, but I have several wigs that color and it can be hard to determine actual color on a computer monitor. There was also a great deal of visible glue however, the project I intended would cover my natural hair so the color was perfectly acceptable and any glue would be well hidden.
The falls arrived several days later. Upon opening the box, and without need of comparison, it was clear the falls were much lighter in color. Again their was also a considerable amount of visible glue. This is where the fun started. I sent pictures showing the color difference and received an email back stating, "THANK YOU FOR YOUR MESSAGE AND I'M SORRY TO HEAR YOU ARE NOT 100% HAPPY WITH THE BRAIDED HAIR PIECES." This was followed by:
I KNOW WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT, THERE IS A SLIGHT COLOR DIFFERENCE ALTHOUGH ALL ITEMS ARE MADE OF EXACTLY THE SAME HAIR AND HAIR COLOR. I MADE THEM ALL OF COLOR 30 BUT THE DIFFERENT TEXTURES AND THE TREATMENT OF THE HAIR CAUSES THE SLIGHT DIFFERENCE IN COLORS. THAT IS WHY THE WAVY HAIR IS NOT AS BRIGHT AS THE CRIMPED HAIR IN THE OTHER PIECES. THIS DIFFERENCE CAUSED BY TEXTURE IS INEVITABLE AND WE CANNOT POIT OUT THIS DIFFERENCE IN THE COLOR CHARTS, BECAUSE IT IS NOT REALLY PREDICTABLE. ONE FACTOR IS THAT COLORS SLIGHTLY CHANGE IN VERY FINE NUANCES FROM THE MANUFACTURER NOW AND THEN. IT IS THE SAME AS WITH WOOL, WHERE YOU SHOULD NOT KNIT ONE PIECE WITH WOOL FROM DIFFERENT CHARGES (THEY HAVE NUMBERS TO DISTINGUISH). AND THE OTHER FACTOR IS INOUR HAND-MADE PRODUCTION: SINCE THE TEXTURES ARE HAND-MADE SOMETIMES THE COLOR DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE DIFFERENT TEXTURES ARE MORE, SOMETIMES THEY ARE LESS, THIS IS NOTHING PREDICTABLE.
I HOPE YOU WILL LIKE YOUR HAIR PIECES ANYWAY ESPECIALLY SINCE NOT ALL OF THEM ARE WORN AT THE SAME TIME.
I indicated that was how I intended to use them, together. I reprinted the convo explaining how I was going to use them. The seller got progressively more abusive. She became accusatory insisting I was "misusing" her hair pieces. She went on ad nausea about how I couldn't do my craft project. That I should have gotten the other connector. All this at the point where I was suggesting making this info more clear upfront, making it easier for people to order. It was even suggested I take $100 worth of hair, unbraid it and experiment to get it the right color. A process that can't even be done on the head band. Finally exasperated by this individual I said I wanted to return both orders. Then the seller got real nasty. At this point I did post a well deserved negative review that didn't meet Etsy guidelines. It was summarily taken down including the oh so deserved one star for customer service. I was accused of attempting to unleash a "$#*! storm" of bad publicity. Deserved bad publicity as the seller seemed far more concerned with the prospect of keeping the money, than she was with customer service.
So to sum up: in her own words she can't supply a consistent product because textural differences and her "process" result in color differences. Colors come in dye lots so unless you can indicate you want a single dye lot you take what you get. You can't possibly use her products together because mixing textures is considered a misuse of her product tantamount to the illegal use of oxycotin, let's not forget she doesn't feel the need to tell you any of this prior to sale. She won't bring it up in subsequent convos, in fact she'll make no mention of it before starting the project. Also remember none of this became an issue until after I called the seller on the noticeable color difference
Well this isn't my first rodeo. Ive worked quite a bit with Kankelon hair. I proceeded to buy bags of regular and textured hair off Amazon, from multiple suppliers, all using the same color code number. Imagine my excitement at finding out there was a color that's a near perfect match to my own hair, #27. I ordered #27 because it made proving my point less expensive. Bags and bags arrived from 3 different vendors, no color difference between textures, no dye lots listed anywhere. Simply, no matter where I bought it, I consistently got the same color. With all this hair in hand I proceeded to make the two falls and three braids and affix them to the rigid head band like I had originally intended. Though told you can't possibly use five the finished product contains 7 hair pieces, nine if you figure one of the pieces is made from 3 individual units.
Having opened the dispute with Etsy, and with evidence at the ready I posted pictures of the sales indicating the multiple purchases of both standard straight and braiding hair from multiple vendors, as well as pictures of the craft project that couldn't possibly work containing multiple hair textures, using multiple production methods, and everything magically the same color. I also stated that use was at the discretion of the buyer. The seller does not get to decide how, when, or where an item is used. Of course all this went through Etsy Trust and Safety which means it's apparently completely ignored. What I did get was a complaint on the part of the seller that posting evidence refuting her statements had nothing to do with the case. Possibly a curious quirk of the German legal system.
Well in the presence of the fact that I proved in multiple instances the seller's statements about texture, dye lots and process are only true for her. That the project I intended could be easily completed. That textures and hair pieces can be mixed and mounted on a rigid head band, I have to conclude statements made by the seller were a weak attempt at not making good on her mistakes. In fact through all of this the seller has never posted anything more evidentiary than because I say so. Even if everything she says is the gods honest truth it should have been clearly stated on her site to avoid ordering problems, if not on the site, in subsequent convos during the process of discussing connectors. With so much opportunity to get it right there really is no excuse for getting it wrong.
Finally after telling you they actually do nothing, Camille is very clear when it comes to what Etsy doesn't do, Etsy will tell you they have no power to force a seller to return money. Its my humble opinion, but I would venture to say this isn't true. Their power lies in the ability to suspend an individuals shop after and only after a proper investigation. If the shop is found to be acting in a fashion that doesn't reflect well on Etsy the choice is evident, make it right or have your shop suspended for a given period of time. You see despite their claims otherwise shops are linked to the Etsy name. You hear phrases like, I got it on Etsy, or I bought it from so and so, they're on Etsy. When it all goes horribly wrong it becomes don't shop on Etsy, not don't by from so and so.
In light of their abdication of all responsibility and as long as it can't be guaranteed that there are protections for buyers or sellers, it's clear no one in good conscience can recommend Etsy as a place to shop. Sellers, they don't even remove disputed shops from a persons feed. Precious space is wasted advertising the wares of people you will never do business with again. They also offer no way of bookmarking a site without clicking favorite shop. This is a distinction that can only truly be made after you've delt with a vendor. It's deceptive, and when you realize who you're dealing with never warranted that little heart, unfavorite you may, but once again their wares rep[eatedly show up in your feed. In short, SHOP AT YOUR OWN RISK because Etsy is no help when a vendor using their service takes advantage of a buyer. Etsy is just Etsy, by their own admission they don't stand for honesty, quality, or any of the other characteristics by which you would judge a business. They are a clearing house of unvetted shop owners for which they claim no responsibility, the vast majority of which are wonderful. Unfortunately you have no reasonable expectation that those that act in a dishonest, unethical fashion will be delt with when their practices are brought to light. Sadly youre just flying blind.
As of 7-25-2016 Etsy closed thje case saying part of the oprder was used:
HELLO, THIS IS DREW FROM ETSY'S TRUST & SAFETY TEAM. THANKS FOR UPDATING THE CASE LOG.
BECAUSE PART OF THE ORDER WAS USED, WE ARE NOT ABLE TO MEDIATE THIS DISPUTE USING THE CASE SYSTEM. FOR THIS REASON, I AM GOING TO CLOSE THIS CASE. YOU ARE WELCOME TO CONTINUE TO WORK TOGETHER TO RESOLVE THIS TRANSACTION OUTSIDE OF THE CASE SYSTEM.
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT ETSY'S CASE SYSTEM CAN BE FOUND HERE: HTTPS://WWW.ETSY.COM/HELP/ARTICLE/4521
THANK YOU FOR YOUR PATIENCE WITH THIS PROCESS, AND I'M VERY SORRY THERE ISN'T MORE WE CAN DO TO HELP.
The items in question were removed only once from their packaging to photograph them in an attempt to show the color difference. The items couldn't have been used because I purchased hair ion #27 to complete my project. A color I found only because I was forced to find an alternative to complete my project. It still proves that dye lots are nothing more than an excuse with no basis in fact, and there are no color differences between textures. Innless of course this issue exists only for magic tribal hair and light copper#30.
So in closing Etsy does not vet it's sellers, has a totally ineffectual dispute system designed to resolve nothing, It makes accusations with no foundation in fact, and doesn't require it's sellers to probe the validity of their statements.
L. China Mayhew