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Etsy Misinformation Mavens
Hall Of Shame Members
This Page Added November 21, 2009

Last Updated November 13, 2011

There is a clique of Etsy sellers that we refer to as the Misinformation Mavens. The MiMs lurk around the forums awaiting their chance to chime in with their faulty opinions, of which there are many. Some are mistaken because they were told something and never researched it for themselves and are simply passing it on to others. Most of the Misinformation Mavens appear to be crafters who are more interested in statements that support their particular desire to protect their business. They are dismissive of opposing opinions, even when supported by facts. Reason doesn't enter into their pronouncements. Most are motivated by emotion - they don't thinks others should do these things because they are wrong. Many are motivated by their self interests - they are designers themselves.

These Misinformation Mavens have a particular dislike of Tabberone because what she says usually contradicts the mutterings of the Misinformation Mavens. They do not like that. They prefer to be worshipped, not defiled. Not everyone who posts a misstatement on the Etsy forums qualifies as a full-fledged Misinformation Mavens. Some of the Esty forum posters are Misinformation Mavens in training and some are working on their merit badges to attain full Mavenship.

We have deconstructed one forum on fabrics from September 12, 2009. It was titled, "Bought the fabric, sewed it, now I can't use it?". It lasted less than a day before being closed. We comment on a number of the posts by the Esty sellers. The few posters who were correct were attacked by the Mavens. There are a few Mavens who openly dislike Tabberone. Tabberone will try not to lose sleep over that. They will have to get in line.

Granted there are misinformation posters on a lot of blogs. This collection of harpies is particularly annoying. When confronted with a demand to produce some sort of legal evidence for their pronouncements, they either fade into the mist pretending nothing was said or they turn the dialogue into a clever personal attack because they can no longer debate the issues. They are assertively wrong.

When it was asked that one MiM produce some sort of legal proof to back her outrageous claims, the MiM told Tabberone to "look it up yourself" because she did not have the time. But she certainly had the time to troll the Etsy forums making false claims but not the time to get it right. She made the claims, she should produce evidence to support the claim. We do.

This list is of the "divas"; the ones who appear to troll the forums regularly. Some of theses Mavens have links to addition pages for more of their inane comments. Click on their name or avatar to view. Most of the statements listed below are false. Some of the personal opinion statements are true, but they are few. Alphabetically by seller ID:

The comments here are not intended to be a negative reflection of the person or the products made and/or sold by the person but rather their terrible habit of posting misinformation.

"you need to pay a royalty or licensing fee to use licensed characters"

Not according to Precious Moments v La Infantil, 971 F. Supp. 66 (D.P.R. 1997), where the court ruled the necessary element of originality is absent from the items manufactured for La Infantil from the Precious Moments fabric.

"the owner of the intellectual property can certainly stipulate as a point of sale that you cannot resell it."
"most of those kinds of things [fabrics] are personal use only, which means just that."
"it is the right of the copyright holder to say that a fabric is for personal use only." [not according to the Supreme Court]

"except make money off of their trademarked images thats on the fabric"
"when you alter something with the original design on it, it is a derivative work of that original design. and derivative works are protected by IP law".

"Yes, you are stealing. The fabric you buy is meant for personal use."
"It's their property and they get to decide how it's used. Just like independent artists."
"I prefer to respect intellectual property and carry out the wishes of the original creator who used their time and talent to create it in the first place." [Christina, can you say your Artistic Bias is showing?]
"My common sense tells me you shouldn't be able to do whatever you want with copyrighted works and profiting off of someone else's work it wrong."

"ANY use of licensed image that is not approved by the licensor is subject to a lawsuit.." (6472847, pg 3)

Not according to Precious Moments v La Infantil, 971 F. Supp. 66 (D.P.R. 1997), where the court ruled the items manufactured for La Infantil from the licensed Precious Moments fabric did not infringe.

"(Just buying it at JoAnns doesn't give you a license to commercially profit off it)"
"The people who make fabric get the right to decide *who* uses it to make $$$ (licensing); they make it available at JoAnns for DIYers who want to make personal non commercial items with it."
"(Mia, pass me one; it kills me how so many people want the right to profit off of someone else's creation/art that they defend their presumed right to (effectively) cheat the original artist/creator out of revenue. Sigh.)"
"*YOU* should not commercially benefit from another's creation, whether it is on fabric or with charms or with illustrations." [Lucinda, can you say Artistic Bias?]

"Just because a company is big and you're little, doesn't mean you have the right to take what they spent huge bucks on developing."
Most fabric manufacturers don't limit the commercial use of their fabrics. The ones who do (like Disney, NFL, MLB, NCAA, Sanrio, etc) generally print on the selvedge something to the effect of "Not for Commercial Use."

"I guess I am coming at this from the otherside. I have some embroidery patterns being published in two books this year along with a how-to guide. I am not okay with anyone using these patterns to sell the finished product online or anywhere else for that matter. I'm willing to share them with people for their own personal use and thats it.." (6449313 page 4)
"In my mind this isn't a question about what one can legally get away with it's a question of integrity. How would YOU feel if someone took one of your original and reproduced it for profit? To me it seems, and I know this sounds harsh, it's the difference between an artisan and an opportunistic knitter."

"I disagree with Tabberone where she says that a contract is not entered into when purchasing items that state "for personal use only." Signatures of both parties are the ideal and most concrete form of contract that we have, but they are not the only ones recognized by courts of law. Your purchase of something that clearly states its restriction is your agreement to abide by the restrictions. If there is a written agreement signed by you and the other party stating otherwise, that would supersede the implied contract, but otherwise the existing contract should still stand up because it is the only method and most reasonable method available for this sort of exchange. Similar to "electronic" signatures online, or clicking a little box that says "I will agree to X, Y, Z." There are no actual signatures involved but it is still a binding agreement." (6449313 page 10) [Not according to the Supreme Court]

"The customer cannot turn the fabric into a dress and re-sell it."

"The problem isn't that she made an item from someone's pattern...that's perfectly legal, but it is not legal to resell the item made from that pattern without the consent of the pattern's creator.." (6449313 page 2) [Since when?]

"Copyright infringement aside, have some dignity and do your own work!" [Odds, can you say Artistic Bias?]
"You sell it, you make money on it, you're a thief." [Hello Kitty fabric use]
"You do NOT as a consumer have any rights to it just because you bought a book, a set of stickers, a greeting card, etc."
"There is obviously no convincing you that the law is indeed not relative." [huh?]

"When I first started selling my work, I called and emailed tons of manufacturers and EVERY single one that is LICENSED to make items with Disney, Peanuts, Hello kitty, sport teams and all those told ME that I CANNOT use those items in my projects for resale."
"I have been told PERSONALLY by manufacturers that you cannot use licensed products to make things to sell. This goes for fabric, rubber/clear stamps, paper, ribbon, embellishments; all of it! "

"Your attorney is an ass. If the property right holder says you cannot use the fabric, you cannot."
"You cannot make money off someone else's artwork without their permission."
"I only went to a semester of law school and know more than that. Just about everything you said is not correct."

"Some of you don't have a clue what a derivative work is." [quirke certainly does not]
"You cannot use the item to make something out of it and sell it" [quirke rhymes with jerk]
"...you cannot make the fabric into something new and sell it."
"So if you are buying fabric with Hello Kitty on it, Sanrio still has the right to determine exactly what you do with it (beyond resellng as-is)."

"Tabberone is not a lawyer." [Neither is quirkybags] (6448731 page 2)
"Just a word of caution...if you decide to trust Tabberone's advice (and I'm not saying she is wrong, but she isn't a lawyer) and are sued, are you prepared to give a lawyer $500-$1000 (or more) just to take your case? I don't have money for a retainer, let alone a court battle, so I chose not to take my chances."
"Making something out of the print makes it a derivative work, which if done without permission of the original artist, is illegal."

"There is a "fair use" clause in the law that allows for library books. You are allowed to copy not more than 10% of a library book and remain within the law."
[Absolutely FALSE]

"One copyright ruling doesn't make a precedent for these things." [Since when? Courts thrive on precedents.]

"I don't know who the attorney you talked to was, but he/she sounds pretty misinformed."
"Maybe you should be able to [use fabric], but legally you can't. We need to follow the law as it is, not how we want it to be."
"As everyone else has said, it's likely that fabric is for personal use only. You can make something for yourself or even make something and give it to a friend but you can't sell something made with it. There's often info on the selvedge about personal use. Or you can contact the manufacturer." (6448731 page 1)

"You own the fabric, but they definitely did NOT sell you the resale rights, or the rights to earn money off of their fabric."
"You can not legally sell any items made from or derived from someone else's copyrighted image or logo, without their express, written permission."
"The fabric says "licensed" [Not really] which means that it can't be used for commercial products, whether sold or donated."
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