Etsy Ends its Witch Hunt

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Author: Dusty Dionne
Original Post at:

It was a sad day shortly following Beltane when the witch hunts began. Beltaine was coming to a close and one by one innocent children of the craft found their livelihoods taken away from them. They came for the poppets. They came for the potpourri. They came for the spells. And they came for the charms. Like ten pins the practitioners of the Etsy community saw their items fall off of the site, now deemed as being against TOS.

The new terms read “any metaphysical service that promises or suggests it will effect a physical change (e.g., weight loss) or other outcome”  would be no longer allowed. This very clearly targeted the Pagan community in its wording.

The Washington Post reported:

““Many have told me their shops are being closed without so much as notice,” said Etsy-seller Ashley Coulton, who is petitioning Etsy to rethink the policy clarification. “I do worry about the effect this will have on my business … I do believe the actions of Etsy are in fact, discriminatory toward Wiccan and Pagan faiths.””

Newsweek said:

“some people have alleged that Etsy’s ban is simply part of a larger religious discrimination existing against people identifying as witches, pagans and Wiccans of faith, noting that some items having to do with prayer, such as rosaries, are still allowed.”

And blogger called the situation The Great Etsy Witch Hunt of 2015″

It was far from lost on the people that Etsy had created a roadblock that effected one single class of people. Or so they thought. Etsy is not only filled with people with sachets of love powders, they are also filled with prayers and saints. Both items that, “promise or suggest it will effect a physical change, or other outcome”

Etsy had painted itself into a corner.

The Aquarian Tabernacle Church let out a series of tweets addressing Etsy directly:

@EtsyHelp Just making sure your ban on #metaphysical items are also going to cover anything with #Christian #prayers written on them.

— ATC Wicca (@ATCWicca) June 22, 2015

@EtsyHelp You see, prayers “offer a physical change [..] or other outcome” and those are against your new ToS. — ATC Wicca (@ATCWicca) June 22, 2015

@EtsyHelp We would hate for you to be viewed as targeting the #Pagan community. Our people will be pouring over @Etsy to report any we find.

— ATC Wicca (@ATCWicca) June 22, 2015

Like Salem before it, Etsy had let the energy of their persecution get away from them. And it was on the world stage. Everyone saw this poor decision from what used to be everyone’s favorite little craft site. That leads us to today. A new email with a similar title to the debacle of the past summer showed up in the inbox of Etsy users: “Important Terms & Policies Updates from Etsy.”

Only this time things were different. They had set up a new TOS called “Our House Rules.” This was no corporate drafted press release. Upon inspection, things looked rather crafty and homey. Hobby Lobby, American Pie, and Summer all rolled into one. Nothing scary here. Just some new information for you to mull over during the picnic.

Clicking the link to “Sellers” was a scary option. Was it going to be the same? Was it going to reinforce the demolition of the incomes of all of the witchy merchants who had been left high and dry? Or would it soothe the hurts that it had earlier caused, much like the pleasant aura that the web page suggested?

After carefully scanning through the Sellers page you notice it. Not at the top, not at the bottom, but mixed into the middle. Not trying to be overt in any way: “Prohibited Items Policy” The next click would speak volumes on whether the voices of the people had been heard by the ears of the owners of Etsy. 

It was no longer there.

Scan after scan confirmed it. Nowhere in the new info did it ban metaphysical items. Not a word about items that promised to effect change.

Something had made it through. Something that someone had done, maybe what everyone had done as a community had resonated within the halls of Etsy, Inc. and helped them hear. It was bigger than the Pagans. It effected people all over the world who had learned to rely on this charming little e-commerce site to be the wonderful bazaar that they knew it to be: A loving little community of nuts who all want to share their arts.

And so it was. The world had been set back to its peaceful course. Like the witch hunts of Salem, they were finally over. Unlike the witch hunts of Salem, the lives that Etsy had burned, can now rise from the ashes, like a phoenix.

A phoenix that you can now invoke the assistance of with your new Phoenix Rising spell candle from BlackCatWitchery.

Only on Etsy.com 

 


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