As was foretold, we've added advertisements to the forums! If you have questions, or if you encounter any bugs, please visit this thread: https://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/240191/forum-advertisement-faq-and-reports-thread/

Etsy.com reveals customers' real name and buying history

123457

Posts

  • BobbleBobble Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    From Ars' sidebar about what's been shared on Facebook, the Etsy story:
    3,157 people shared this.

    Number goes up every few minutes. Word's getting around.

    Bobble on
  • TofystedethTofystedeth Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Bobble wrote: »
    From Ars' sidebar about what's been shared on Facebook, the Etsy story:
    3,157 people shared this.

    Number goes up every few minutes. Word's getting around.

    +1. Forgot I could do that. :)

    Tofystedeth on
    steam_sig.png
  • KrysanthemumKrysanthemum Registered User
    edited March 2011
    bowen wrote: »
    Update from Etsy. They've changed some things.

    http://www.etsy.com/storque/handmade-life/rethinking-feedback-12472/

    Reads to me like "God what the fuck guys, this change makes perfect sense and all those other people are liars."

    Truth be told, I couldn't get past the first four paragraphs.

    The problem is that they've changed all the wrong things. You can still find people by their real name, you just can't see their buy history anymore. Which is fine, but they also made buyers' feedback private, which means a buyer can say anything on a seller's feedback with no accountability at all. The Etsy feedback system was always a bit broken but was workable, now it's just the worst of eBay.

    Seriously, it's like they want to break our shops. A lot of us are investigating alternate selling venues, but they simply don't have the traffic that Etsy does. After this shitstorm, that may change.

    Krysanthemum on
  • japanjapan Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Man this is really snowballing. From the Etsy forums:
    artsyalien says

    Oh, and here are the "handful" of articles - so far...


    Updated list of articles:

    Consumerist - http://consumerist.com/2011/03/you-want-your-real-name-associated-with-your-etsy-purchase-history-right.html

    Ars Technica - http://arstechnica.com/web/news/2011/03/etsy-users-irked-after-buyers-purchases-exposed-to-the-world.ars

    BoingBoing - http://www.boingboing.net/2011/03/15/etsys-privacy-valdez.html

    MSNBC - http://technolog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2011/03/15/6273251-e-commerce-site-etsy-exposes-users-shopping-histories

    Forbes - http://blogs.forbes.com/kashmirhill/2011/03/15/etsys-experiment-with-social-could-be-costly/

    Digital Trends - http://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/etsy-comes-under-fire-for-revealing-buyers-names-purchase-histories/

    Help Net Security - http://www.net-security.org/secworld.php?id=10746

    NY Magazine - http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2011/03/unannounced_privacy_changes_ex.html

    NY Convergence - http://nyconvergence.com/2011/03/etsy-exposes-buyers-and-purchases-online.html

    Auctionbytes - http://www.auctionbytes.com/cab/cab/abn/y11/m03/i15/s02

    The Business Insider - http://www.businessinsider.com/etsy-takes-a-page-from-the-facebook-playbook-2011-3

    Gizmodo - http://gizmodo.com/5782146/etsy-privacy-catastrophe-reveals-users-full-names-dildo-preferences-and-other-less-embarrassing-purchase-information

    Village Voice - http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2011/03/etsy_privacy_policy_dildos.php

    The Mary Sue (awesome new geek chick blog, if you haven't seen it yet) - http://www.themarysue.com/etsy-privacy-settings/

    Buzzfeed - http://www.buzzfeed.com/donnad/etsy-new-privacy-policy-not-so-private

    About.com - http://antivirus.about.com/b/2011/03/14/the-etsy-trojan.htm

    Reputation.com - http://reputation.com/blog/2011/03/15/etsy-privacy-change-shows-users-purchase-histories/

    Yahoo - http://news.yahoo.com/s/digitaltrends/20110315/tc_digitaltrends/etsycomesunderfireforrevealingbuyersnamespurchasehistories

    Salon.com - http://www.salon.com/entertainment/tv/feature/2011/03/15/etsy_privacy_people_search/

    NowPublic - http://www.nowpublic.com/tech-biz/etsy-people-search-privacy-policy-change-exposes-users-2767071.html

    Washington Post - http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-tech/post/the-circuit-kerry-hutchinson-introduce-infrastructure-bank-franken-to-propose-new-net-neutrality-bill-free-calls-texts-to-japan/2011/03/08/AB7m9gW_blog.html

    Geek Sugar - http://www.geeksugar.com/Etsy-Privacy-Settings-14921901

    Posted at 4:15 pm, March 15, 2011 EDT

    A lot of them are picking up on the example of the woman whose google results are resumes plus dildo.

    japan on
  • Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    that's pretty awesome

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
    NREqxl5.jpg
    hold your head high soldier, it ain't over yet
    that's why we call it the struggle, you're supposed to sweat
  • metrometrometrometro Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Victory? I just added this update to my blog post on this topic:



    After many days of silence Etsy announced that past purchases would be hidden by removing item descriptions from user feedback. The change of policy came within hours of the following exchange I had with the 30-year-old Etsy CEO Rob Kalin.


    From the Ars Technica comment section:
    Rob Kalin wrote:
    It’s not like there’s a canonical list of all my purchases somewhere.- Rob

    Yes, there is. It’s the seller feedback. Sellers always give feedback in the hopes that you reciprocate. When you make that list and include a link to the item description, that is the list of all your purchases. Here’s yours:

    Vintage Industrial Cooper’s Table
    Gull-Wing Bench with drawer
    Make My Wishes Come True – Clipboard
    Uncomplicated – a simple modern box clock
    Unfurled with Green Interior

    I can go on but your purchases are boring. Sex shops, less so. Gay bookstores? Hmm. Drug items? Getting more damaging…

    Simple fix: hide the items. Keep the feedback. Also, quit defending something indefensible. You exposed my purchases without my knowledge or consent.

    The policy change I suggested — removing item descriptions from feedback — was implemented a few hours later. “As of right now, all your purchases on Etsy are private,” wrote Kalin. Full credit to the Penny Arcade forums for noticing, investigating, understanding and exposing this privacy violation.



    Favorites are still public. But... progress.

    metrometro on
  • TofystedethTofystedeth Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I've got this kind of warm fuzzy feeling. I feel so full of...what's the opposite of shame?

    Tofystedeth on
    steam_sig.png
  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I've got this kind of warm fuzzy feeling. I feel so full of...what's the opposite of shame?

    Pride, which is a sin. So the opposite of shame is more shame.

    ArbitraryDescriptor on
  • Magus`Magus` Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Double shame.

    Wait, shit

    Magus` on
  • KrysanthemumKrysanthemum Registered User
    edited March 2011
    It solved the privacy issue but it further broke seller tools.

    I am appreciative of you guys getting this addressed. You've elicited a faster response from Etsy Admin than we, as sellers on the forum, have ever managed on our own. Next time Etsy fucks up, I'm coming right to you guys.

    Which, given their past history, should be in about 5 minutes.

    Krysanthemum on
  • ImprovoloneImprovolone Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    bowen wrote: »
    It's a way to sensationalize... something that was already sensationalized. To us, it comes off as weird, to the person reading it, they think we're a bunch of pervs. I won't detest that for some of the people here. I'm looking at you imprevalone... 8-)

    Couldn't help myself with that, it was pretty easy.

    Oi! Well... touche. If it helps, she denied my friend request and now my posts in this thread are the first hit on Google for "XXL veiny dildo".
    I'm not sure how that helps, but I like using that phrase.

    edit for appropriate size

    Improvolone on
    Voice actor for hire. My time is free if your project is!
  • adytumadytum Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    edit- ninja edit'd by Improv

    adytum on
  • KrysanthemumKrysanthemum Registered User
    edited March 2011
    *edit* Sorry, was wrong about this.

    Krysanthemum on
  • MorriganMorrigan Registered User
    edited March 2011
    Dear Penny Arcade:

    You folks are effing awesome!

    Sincerely,

    Me

    Morrigan on
  • JustinSane07JustinSane07 __BANNED USERS regular
    edited March 2011
    colbert_wedidit.jpg

    JustinSane07 on
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    the battle is not over!

    but it is begun.

    Etsy, you are on notice.


    There's a 50-ish page thread on their forum right now initiated by AdamFreed, most of which is full of still-outraged Etsy sellers who are pissed that it took this long and this much outside attention to get them to even kind of try to start fixing it.

    :^: it's a start. Maybe if they fixed some of their other draconian policies I might consider selling my work there again.

    tapeslinger on
  • ImprovoloneImprovolone Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    "Oh fuck, other Internet Communities are pissed at us. Maybe we should pay attention."

    dicks.

    Improvolone on
    Voice actor for hire. My time is free if your project is!
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    "Oh fuck, other Internet Communities are pissed at us. Maybe we should pay attention."

    dicks.

    this, pretty much.

    For every thing they've done wrong-- and uh, it isn't just this one thing, it's been like this:

    We complained in the Forums-- they'd mute us or ban us.
    We complained on Etsy-related blogs and even created some that were specifically for highlighting Etsy fuckups-- they'd ignore us, mute us or ban us.
    We complained to folks who would write human interest stories about Etsy's terrible policies-- eh. Maybe they'd do something, like commission three utterly useless and frivolous "phone rooms" when media outlets got word of their total lack of phone based customer support services. (There is no evidence that they actually use the phone rooms to conduct actual customer support.)

    It took this much pushing to get them to do ANYTHING. And they're still not fixing the ONE thing they fucked up in the first place, so searching a person's name will still turn up their Etsy account on Google!

    The kind of geese these people are thoroughly transcends silliness straight on into some kind of straight up imbecile nirvana.

    tapeslinger on
  • rizriz Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Another testament to the power of (glass artisan) dongs.

    I mean Penny Arcade.

    Seriously this is quite awesome. (The [sic] in the MSNBC article makes me giggle, too.)

    riz on
  • ImprovoloneImprovolone Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Of all fucking times to be quoted by motherfuckin' MSNBC, some asshole puts out a typo.

    Improvolone on
    Voice actor for hire. My time is free if your project is!
  • TofystedethTofystedeth Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Well, that and was looking up someone's dildo purchase history.

    Tofystedeth on
    steam_sig.png
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    it's really the dildo thing that got people going, I think. but you know, whatever works!

    tapeslinger on
  • RikushixRikushix Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Of all fucking times to be quoted by motherfuckin' MSNBC, some asshole puts out a typo.

    Haha

    still. small price to pay to be quoted on the topic of dildos.

    Rikushix on
    StKbT.jpg
  • durandal4532durandal4532 Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Man, a bunch of sites are just updating that the problem got fixed because well now buying history is kinda mostly private, even though they broke something else in the process. And didn't fix the actual for real problem at all.

    durandal4532 on
    Take a moment to donate what you can to Critical Resistance and Black Lives Matter.
  • RikushixRikushix Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Hey, I got quoted on Gothamist! Heh.

    http://gothamist.com/2011/03/15/those_artisan_dildos_you_bought_on.php



    @ Durandal: I think the big problem here is that, yes, a lot of things, like feedback commentary and item linking, as well Etsy being indexed by google, those things were always happening. The ACTUAL PROBLEM is this: Etsy introduced features such as Circles, as well as the new and refined People Search, and when it came to the methods by which people discovered other users, it opted in everyone by default.

    The default opt-out policy is what the main problem is.

    Rikushix on
    StKbT.jpg
  • ImprovoloneImprovolone Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Rikushix wrote: »
    Me too!
    ... with a fucking typo. Goddamn it.

    Improvolone on
    Voice actor for hire. My time is free if your project is!
  • zerg rushzerg rush Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Of all fucking times to be quoted by motherfuckin' MSNBC, some asshole puts out a typo.

    Never change

    zerg rush on
  • RikushixRikushix Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    zerg rush wrote: »
    Of all fucking times to be quoted by motherfuckin' MSNBC, some asshole puts out a typo.

    Never change

    hahahahah

    Rikushix on
    StKbT.jpg
  • metrometrometrometro Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    it's really the dildo thing that got people going, I think.

    Yeah, that's usually how I warm up too.

    I love this board.

    metrometro on
  • rizriz Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Rikushix wrote: »
    Me too!
    ... with a fucking typo. Goddamn it.

    See, now every time I take the time to edit a post to fix a tiny typo, it will feel a bit more justified. Because you never know.

    riz on
  • LadyMLadyM Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Yeah, if you try to change your name to something else, they have an "approvals process" so you can't change your name to Smithsonian Dickcheese. If you just want to remove your name, you can do it right away.

    Really? Because I was able to quite literally change my "real" name to a set of expletives.

    "Adam Brown" from Etsy replied to my Livejournal post about this:
    Hi, Adam Brown from Etsy here.

    Just wanted to let you know that we have resolved this. As of right now, all your purchases and feedback on Etsy are now automatically set to private.

    You can read more about it in our blog: http://www.etsy.com/storque/handmade-life/rethinking-feedback-12472/"

    Well, of course they haven't fixed the problem at all, real names are still visible AND now no one can read feedback. Fail.

    I have to wonder how he found my LJ, though, as it's just a little personal one without a large readership.

    LadyM on
  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    They are obviously tapped into my shopping habits. When I walk into a store, not only do I want to chat up the clerk and find out where they went to school and their favorite bands, I also request the information of everyone else in the store, and ask them about their prior purchases for the day at other stores.

    It makes shopping more personal, you know?

    Honestly, why are we so obsessed with trying to turn the internet into hanging with some friends at a bar. Is fsck -v going to tell me the likes and dislikes of the authors soon? Maybe a wishlist of bands they'd like to see in concert?

    Anywho, congrats PA forums for being driven enough to see this mess through to public outrage. Hopefully the esty sellers can convince them to actually make meaningful and non broken changes, and not just be reactionary to forums they can't control.

    kildy on
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    we need to keep on them, there are a lot of sites who are reporting that Etsy's changed as a result of this and they have NOT actually corrected the problem-- they've actually just borked it more.

    tapeslinger on
  • Muse Among MenMuse Among Men Suburban Bunny Princess? Its time for a new shtick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    adytum wrote: »
    adytum wrote: »
    Now someone is internet famous for bad grammar and being a perv.

    Oh shit! I never intended anyone to find out about my bad grammar!

    ;-)

    Great job on getting the word out about this though!

    Yeah, if I was you I would be feeling proud right now. You are helping spare people possible embarrassment. Chin up you have done more good for the world than most people ever will!

    Muse Among Men on
  • RMS OceanicRMS Oceanic Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    japan wrote: »
    I think I should lobby my MP to make sure the Data Protection Act effectively covers this.

    I was reading up on this.

    Businesses in the US do not appear to have any data protection obligations with respect to information about non-citizens. There is a "safe harbour" agreement that states that if an organisation in the UK wants to transfer data to an organisation in another jurisdiction, that jurisdiction must have data protection laws in place at least as stringent as those in the EU.

    Since with Etsy you are providing information to them directly, they don't appear to be required to take any particular steps to safeguard that information, and the only way to seek restitution appears to be to take private legal action.

    It's pretty fucked up.

    :?

    I think in light of Etsy and other companies' attempts to make publicising information the default option rather than something you can elect to do, I'd personally like the DPA to be amended to ensure that such a silly goose measure is prohibited, that information is considered private unless absolutely necessary for the transaction to work - like sending a postal address for an auction you win on eBay - or the individual elects to display it. Dunno if that would help Americans, but with growing awareness of the consequences of our "digital footprint", it's something I think we should now be vigilant about.

    RMS Oceanic on
  • Privacy Concerned ReaderPrivacy Concerned Reader Registered User
    edited March 2011
    adytum wrote: »
    adytum wrote: »
    Now someone is internet famous for bad grammar and being a perv.

    Oh shit! I never intended anyone to find out about my bad grammar!

    ;-)

    Great job on getting the word out about this though!

    Yeah, if I was you I would be feeling proud right now. You are helping spare people possible embarrassment. Chin up you have done more good for the world than most people ever will!

    Thank you. You guys rock, seriously. And I do feel proud that I managed to do something good, by bringing this to light. But sad, too - I truly had hope for Etsy, even after blowing the whistle. I thought the media storm would bring them to their senses, they'd reverse the changes immediately, a higher-up or three would get scapegoated and fired, and the rest would learn from the example never to do something like this again.

    Until I saw Rob Kalin's posts on Ars Technica and Etsy's utter refusal to roll back the buyer name search, even as Yahoo, MSNBC, Forbes, etc picked it up... Etsy's corporate response and Kalin's personal reaction showed me beyond any doubt that they do not care about anything at all beyond their own pride and ambition. Damn the customers, full speed ahead! Well, I may have failed to save Etsy, but at least pushed a few customers out of the line of fire. That's something.

    Privacy Concerned Reader on
  • Privacy Concerned ReaderPrivacy Concerned Reader Registered User
    edited March 2011
    And just to highlight a couple gems (out of a great many) from Etsyland:

    Scentery says

    "They are releasing info... they're just releasing it on other sites.

    Can you image it? When there's a major bug found in Windows, instead of making a release or fix... Bill Gates personally logs onto the ars forums and argues about it there.

    That's exactly what you're doing, Rob."

    and


    EscapePod says

    "You know what? It just doesn't matter any more. It's over.


    Call it. Time of death. 12:40 EST."

    Privacy Concerned Reader on
  • KrysanthemumKrysanthemum Registered User
    edited March 2011
    we need to keep on them, there are a lot of sites who are reporting that Etsy's changed as a result of this and they have NOT actually corrected the problem-- they've actually just borked it more.

    Yeah, this. They slapped a bandaid on the problem, but in the process cut off an arm. Can you imagine an online selling venue with one-sided feedback? *shudder*

    Krysanthemum on
  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Man leave it to a hipster to take a $12mill USD business and make a fool out of themselves.

    Also, damage control, they are doing some of the weirdest stuff to reign in what they did. Obviously they did not plan ahead with a rollback procedure, I can't blame them I probably wouldn't either, but a little more thought before "OMG PULL THE PLUG" probably would've not left their system as broken as it was. Shit was already on the internet guys, leaving it up for 2-3 more days wouldn't have been a problem if all you had done was said "Oh shit, sorry, we're going to fix this."

    Obviously the thing to do is bribe google to start removing everything but the main etsy.com link, anything that does not reference http://www.etsy.com should probably be removed from search. Or else google might feel a shit storm.

    bowen on
    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
  • zerg rushzerg rush Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    bowen wrote: »
    Also, damage control, they are doing some of the weirdest stuff to reign in what they did. Obviously they did not plan ahead with a rollback procedure, I can't blame them I probably wouldn't either, but a little more thought before "OMG PULL THE PLUG" probably would've not left their system as broken as it was. Shit was already on the internet guys, leaving it up for 2-3 more days wouldn't have been a problem if all you had done was said "Oh shit, sorry, we're going to fix this."

    If they planned ahead that much, the obvious thing to would be to never do it in the first place. I mean just asking around the office if it was a good idea to make one of the 1st page hits of your customers' names be the sex toys they purchased should have shot down the idea.

    Hell, does anyone that works for Etsy even use the website? Surely one of them bought something they don't want to be a 1st page Google hit. When everybody was implementing this new system, did none of them think to mention that they'd like to keep their privacy?

    zerg rush on
Sign In or Register to comment.