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Legalease
Legalease, Lawyer
Category: Legal
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Experience:  15 years exp all aspects of general law
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Hi, I own(ed) a store on www.etsy.com. It is a website were

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Hi,
I own(ed) a store on www.etsy.com. It is a website were you can sell your handcrafted items. One of the items I sell is jewelry made of Lego. I tried to comply with Lego's rules and included a disclaimer and wrote the name Lego including the tradmark symbol. Over time I got several "copyright infringement" emails about my items and was in contact with the Legal representative of Lego how to formulate my listings the right way. I am not native English and the problem was that I used Lego as an noun instead of an adjective. The paralegal of Lego approved my solution and thanked me for being so cooperatvive.
During the process I kept Etsy's Legal department informed about the steps I was undertaking and on the second of May I even took all my Lego items of the website to be sure I was not violating any laws. I also told them I had contact with Lego and took all my listings down. Not once did I get any reply back from a real person at Etsy who was reviewing my case.
Instead I got another warning about a listing, which at that point was NOT in my store anymore, because I removed it and right after they closed down my store. I understand the Policies of Etsy that they are allowed to do so, but I have been updating them and asking them questions about how to solve the issue. I also send them the copy of the emails from the Lego representative who approved my solution and is the person who marked my listings for copyright issues in the first place.
I have been trying to get a hold of a real person or phonenumber of somebody at Etsy, without luck. Today finally somebody got back to me hiding behind policies and not reading into my case and seeing I did everything to cooperate.
Main Issues are:
- LEGO approved my wording
- they closed my store based on a product listing that was not there

My business is based from home and I do not have the means to afford an expensive lawyer. When reading online I came accross a lot of similar cases. Etsy does not have a phonenumber, helpdesk, chat service or anything. It is just one way saying you got three strikes and you are out, without them having read my explanations and steps I was taking to solve the issue. Etsy does billions in revenue per year and I feel like the plankton fighting against the big fish. My store was my everything and with a click of the button they closed it. I do not have access to my open orders, my 300+ listings, pictures and descriptions any more.

Is there anything I can do against them???

Rose

Hello there

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Under the current laws in the US regarding internet sales and services, the website that you are using has the absolute upper hand and they do have the right to shut your website down for any reason or for no reason at all. I truly wish that I could tell you something differently here, but I cannot. While you cannot force them to maintain your store on their website if they are unwilling to do so, you do have the right to report their lack of cooperation and difficulties in reaching them to the Attorney General in the state where they are operating from (you can find a website for the Attorney General's office in every state by using the name of the state and "Attorney General" and doing a search -- because the Attorney General's office is the chief consumer advocate in every state they may investigate the website and if they receive a number of complaints they may shut them down -- the Attorney General's offices do not like it when internet companies do not have readily available contact information where a consumer can speak with a human being to resolve an issue -- Paypal and EBay got into trouble in many states for these issues when they were starting out). You should also complain to the Better Business Bureau in your home area and Etsy's home state. After those sources, online sources like facebook websites can help you to spread the word of what has happened to you and your store on Etsy and then perhaps they might work with you to re establish the store or at least to service your open customer orders.

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I truly wish I could have told you "they are wrong and you have a lawsuit here" but I cannot do that. It would be unprofessional of me to lie to you or try to gloss over the truth when you asked a very direct question of the law. I hope that you will understand that I can only tell you the truth of the matter and keep that in mind when you are pressing a rating button below. I am paid NOTHING if you do not press a positive rating and while the news is not that wonderful, it is legally correct and that is the job that I am asked to do.

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MARY

 

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I can't believe they can just do that... I will follow up on your advice. It is not their copyright on Lego and Lego approved my listings. They are just in between. Thank you for your time :(