Tuesday, August 10, 2010

No Good Etsy *shakes fist*

Two months ago was my first experience shopping online. Yeah, I know I’m a late bloomer. Everyone I know has been using eBay and brand name website services for years, but I was never interested. When I buy stuff I like to look at it, hold it my hand, feel it and try it on. The only aspect of that I can get online is the looking part. I was convinced I’d never be an “online shopper” until I came across Etsy.

Etsy was like an accumulation of all the best flea markets and craft shows I had never visited! Unique, one of a kind, good prices and all at the click of a button! I was in heaven. I love supporting independents that make one of a kind things and Etsy was bringing all these people to me through one amazing site! Suddenly all the sensory experiences I adore about shopping in person melted away and all that was left was a desire to buy everyone I knew an original gift found on Etsy. I decided to begin right away by buying my boyfriend’s birthday gifts. His birthday was months away, but I needed to shop NOW! My new addiction to Etsy demanded so! I spent hours skimming through vendors and looking at products when I finally came across two sets of cufflinks that would look smashing on my beau’s wrists. Instead of trying to choose just one set I bought both pairs and figured that Scott deserved an extra awesome birthday this year. The purchasing process was really simple, which made Etsy even more addictive to me; I signed up for an account, clicked pay and waited for confirmation. Emails from vendors with receipts and shipping confirmation came to me within minutes and I was feeling pretty assured that Etsy was my new favourite thing on earth! Now all I had to do was wait by my mail box for the cufflinks to arrive.

In just two weeks the first pair showed up and I was thrilled. So speedy and so nicely wrapped, in my mind Etsy = awesomeness. I thought the next pair of cufflinks was sure to come on the tails of the first delivery, but I was sorely mistaken. A month went by and they never showed. I started to get concerned so I contacted the vendor. They never responded to my email. I tried again and still nothing. Finally on a third attempt they emailed me back and said the package must have been held up at customs and that they would resend my order. This assurance washed my worries away and Etsy and I were best friends again! I started planning all the Christmas gifts I would buy through them come winter. Another month rolled by and STILL I received nothing. This was now becoming a serious situation. Scott’s birthday was a week away and half his intended gift was missing. I tried contacting the seller again to no avail… I was being ignored. Multiple emails went unanswered and many pleas were screamed to the sky: “WHY ETSY, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME!” “Our relationship had such promise. Remember when you followed through that first time? Those were good times! What happened between us?” I eventually stopped screaming to the heavens and made a formal complaint to Etsy against the vendor who had jilted me. They said it would take 30-90 days to sort out my issue and that I should just request a refund though Paypal in the mean time. This pretty much sounded like “tough luck” to me. The vendor had jerked me around for so long anyway that I was no longer eligible for a refund… at this point I officially ended any future hopes for reconcilement with Etsy. I was deleting their emails and cutting up pictures of us. I was not about to stay in a relationship where I was being used and betrayed!

My last bid for help was made to MasterCard. I called them and told my whole shopping story of woe to a very sympathetic operator who then passed me to a superior who said “don’t worry Miss. Jerome, we’ll sort this out for you and reverse the charge.” It took them ten minutes. There were no promises of justice and then back handed explanations that my problem would take 30-90 days to solve, they just dealt with it. Now this is customer service I can get behind! The moral of my story kids is: be careful when starting new relationships online. Things may seem all rosy and perfect at first, but a vendor who is miles away in another country can jilt you with the click of a button… and when in doubt use MasterCard.

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