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Anyone else frustrated?
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mollyodesigns
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 8:33 pm    Post subject: Anyone else frustrated? Reply with quote

With all the people that keep saying "this doesn't apply to me" and acting like we are making all this stuff up?!

Before I paid a contractor to create my line, I started out on ebay making one-of-a-kind customs. So, I'm still a member of several of the boards with those designers, etc. Everyone is acting like I am crazy, overreacting, have no idea what I am talking about, etc. I just want to scream. Not one of them is taking this serious and plans to just go on selling after Feb. 9th.

I'm heartbroken that I will have to close down a business that is making money and growing even in this economy. Not to mention the fact that I LOVE what I do! And it gives me a sense on independence while raising 3 small kids.

What can I say to all these indie designers who think I just came up with a conspiracy theory?!

Sorry to vent, but I'm tired of following all the laws and rules while so many do not.
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Lisa DOWNTOWN JOEY
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Molly...

I feel your frustration. Everyone on ebay doesn't think it applies to them OR they think they'll sell under the radar.

When I have time later tonight, I will add my 2 cents on the ebay forums where I can and link back to the FI blog.
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mollyodesigns
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lisa DOWNTOWN JOEY wrote:
Molly...

I feel your frustration. Everyone on ebay doesn't think it applies to them OR they think they'll sell under the radar.

When I have time later tonight, I will add my 2 cents on the ebay forums where I can and link back to the FI blog.


Thank you Lisa. I want to respond, but I want to be able to back it up with wording from the regulation. However, I don't know that it is actually there. I know it applies to everyone, but it isn't spelled out plainly for all to see.

Even the owner of Journal Modiste (where hundreds of custom boutique designers are featured) sent out an email yesterday saying "I seriously doubt this would even effect us." So now the majority of the designers on ebay are not jumping on board to support change to this regulation. Again, very frustrating.
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Kathleen F.
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Joined: 08 Sep 2005
Posts: 11437
Location: NM Albuquerque

PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mollyodesigns wrote:
Even the owner of Journal Modiste (where hundreds of custom boutique designers are featured) sent out an email yesterday saying "I seriously doubt this would even effect us." So now the majority of the designers on ebay are not jumping on board to support change to this regulation. Again, very frustrating.

Can you please forward this email to me? I'd be delighted to inform this person otherwise. As I've said elsewhere, I think we need to start an aggressive cpsia enforcement education campaign and let these people know they can be reported to their state AGs office. They have to realize that their competitors who are sitting on the side lines watching them continue selling are going to be resentful.

If you will include links to where ever it is you're seeing this stuff, we'd be happy to chime in and provide you with back up. We can't do that unless we know where it is.


Last edited by Kathleen F. on Mon Jan 05, 2009 5:09 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Valerie Burner
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kathleen, that's a great idea. I need a little help as well with the PACCers- and some kind of direct, informative statement will go a lot farther than my paragraph on the email list. Perhaps a statement that could be copied and pasted for those people who have their heads...in the sand. Were you able to glean any information from the AAFA members as to how they are planning to proceed? This reminds me of the stories about all the people during WWII who thought they were "safe" because they were not Jewish...
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J C Sprowls



Joined: 25 Mar 2006
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 11:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting parallel, Valerie.
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mollyodesigns
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kathleen F. wrote:
mollyodesigns wrote:
Even the owner of Journal Modiste (where hundreds of custom boutique designers are featured) sent out an email yesterday saying "I seriously doubt this would even effect us." So now the majority of the designers on ebay are not jumping on board to support change to this regulation. Again, very frustrating.

Can you please forward this email to me? I'd be delighted to inform this person otherwise. As I've said elsewhere, I think we need to start an aggressive cpsia enforcement education campaign and let these people know they can be reported to their state AGs office. They have to realize that their competitors who are sitting on the side lines watching them continue selling are going to be resentful.

If you will include links to where ever it is you're seeing this stuff, we'd be happy to chime in and provide you with back up. We can't do that unless we know where it is.


I will happily forward this email to you! What address should I send it to? I also agree, a response that we could also copy and paste onto these boards, our blogs, etc. would be great. Many of the boards are members only. I will happily post all the links, but I'm not sure you want to spend the time registering with all of them, etc. Just let me know what you would rather do.

As for reporting people who violate, I'm also on board. If I have to give up a business that is thriving and basically surrender the last 3 years of my life for nothing, then I will be first in line to report anyone who is not following the law. I hate to be that person, but it just isn't right. I have heard "rumor" that there may even be a whistleblower compensation. Again, just rumor. But in this economy if that were to be true, I'm sure many of us would happily give lists of violators for a little compensation.
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Eric H
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 11:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We're going to start a new activism area to keep track of and counter the misinformation out there. I keep coming across environmentalists, public interest sites, and consumer activists who are applauding this thing because they think it finally means the end of lead and dangerous chemicals and/or it means the end of importing from developing countries, especially China. I think we need to be very careful in how we engage them.

In my opinion, most of the people in this forum are not only not in favor of lead or phthalates, but many of us are hyper-conscientious about what we make for children. So let's not get into an "us vs. the wacko environmentalists" fight because at the end of the day I still want to be an environmentalist (though admittedly of a pretty off-brand, anti-statist environmentalism). This needs to focus on the devilish details of the Act, not its intent. The problems are the testing, documentation, timeline, retroactivity, scope, and other poorly thought out aspects which have BIG unintended consequences.

I think these areas fall into the following categories:

* Environmentalists (NRDC)
* Public interest (Public Citizen and PIRG)
* Consumer activists (Consumers Union)
* Small manufacturer denialists
* Protectionists (anti-Chinese)

I think we need to track them, link to them as bad actors, and develop a coherent set of factual counterarguments as well as some good narratives (anecdotes). Rick Woldenberg's detailed discussion of his problems is one example; factual data on the number of small manufacturers being hit by this is another; the huge scope of who is affected (astroturf! I love it) is another.
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mollyodesigns
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eric H wrote:
We're going to start a new activism area to keep track of and counter the misinformation out there. I keep coming across environmentalists, public interest sites, and consumer activists who are applauding this thing because they think it finally means the end of lead and dangerous chemicals and/or it means the end of importing from developing countries, especially China. I think we need to be very careful in how we engage them.

In my opinion, most of the people in this forum are not only not in favor of lead or phthalates, but many of us are hyper-conscientious about what we make for children. So let's not get into an "us vs. the wacko environmentalists" fight because at the end of the day I still want to be an environmentalist (though admittedly of a pretty off-brand, anti-statist environmentalism). This needs to focus on the devilish details of the Act, not its intent. The problems are the testing, documentation, timeline, retroactivity, scope, and other poorly thought out aspects which have BIG unintended consequences.

I think these areas fall into the following categories:

* Environmentalists (NRDC)
* Public interest (Public Citizen and PIRG)
* Consumer activists (Consumers Union)
* Small manufacturer denialists
* Protectionists (anti-Chinese)

I think we need to track them, link to them as bad actors, and develop a coherent set of factual counterarguments as well as some good narratives (anecdotes). Rick Woldenberg's detailed discussion of his problems is one example; factual data on the number of small manufacturers being hit by this is another; the huge scope of who is affected (astroturf! I love it) is another.


Well said! I have a son with autism and we are VERY conscious of the environmental toxins he is exposed to (and our other 2 girls as well). So I'm not tryinig to say let's bombard our kids with toxins. Let's just be realistic about who needs to be testing and who doesn't

The reason I haven't responded to many of these people who are attacking me on other boards is because I don't feel well versed enough to create a factual arguement. That is why I'm looking to the experts here on the forum :) I'm one of your soldiers, I just need the right weapons to fight off the ebay/etsy denialists, as you call them. :)
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Valerie Burner
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am in the same boat. And since I was accused of trying to create panic, I have not said anything until I have some very solid legs upon which to stand. I would like to also get the word out to some of the health blogs that like to fight for the right of freedom of choice about food and supplements. They not only want freedom of choice, but they don't want the companies who sell them to go belly up. Perhaps if they were given a compelling argument, they may just hop aboard...
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Kathleen F.
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Joined: 08 Sep 2005
Posts: 11437
Location: NM Albuquerque

PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mollyodesigns wrote:
I will happily forward this email to you! What address should I send it to? Many of the boards are members only. I will happily post all the links, but I'm not sure you want to spend the time registering with all of them, etc.

Please post all links. It's not just me. Others can decide whether it's something they want to pursue. Besides, some of us may already belong and just aren't up on the details.

Below is the message I sent to Amy Shearer of Journal Modiste. Feel free to amend it for your purposes and send it onto any other blog owners who derive income from DE type advertisers. They need to know they are liable if they give bad advice or fail to warn people because they have a vested interest in advertising revenue if they operate a site of commercial intent.

Quote:
Dear Ms. Shearer,

It has come to my attention that you are telling people the new CPSIA law will not affect them. This concerns me because other than that it is not true and could hurt visitors and advertisers who rely on you, it represents an enormous legal liability to you.

Publishing Journal Modiste -a commercial venture- puts you at a higher level of liability because you could be sued for giving bad business advice. In fact, the argument could be made that you had a vested interest in concealing the truth for your own gain. If advertisers think they are not affected based on your advice, you can continue to earn advertising revenue -at least until everything falls apart. Still worse, the structure of your site provides an expedited way to report a lot of violators at once. You've made your advertisers easy targets; like shooting fish in a barrel. One only need follow links to your advertisers websites and go from there to report them.

I do not believe you are an evil person, quite the contrary but this doesn't mean your advice is sound. I'm not saying you don't know your business but I've worked in the garment industry for nearly 30 years and I spent three days this week in Washington DC, meeting with the biggest brands in the business as well as the CPSC Counsel General Cheryl Falvey (responsible for defining the rules) and I can tell you, I don't know ANY child's product producer no matter how small who is not devastatingly affected. Maybe you know something about the law that Falvey and the cadre of attorneys don't but she made it very clear to us that she doesn't care if it's one item made by a fairy godmother out of 100% certified organic angel wings sold on eBay or Etsy, the rules apply. She also made it clear that enforcement will be highly aggressive. In the interests of responsible leadership, reducing your own legal liability and altruistic concern for those who depend on you, please amend this oversight as quickly as possible.

Regarding ebay, it's nothing personal but every person who continues to sell on ebay after feb 10 will be reported to both Ebay for violation of TOS (goods must be legally saleable and they aren't without the GCCs and so those listings will be deleted) and their state's attorneys general office. You see, it's not the overworked Federal government who will be enforcing this law but every state government is enjoined to enforce the law within state boundaries. There's also the matter of consumers looking to make a buck. If a vendor is not compliant, there are sick people out there who will think nothing of filing suit for having unknowingly purchased illegal goods from even the tiniest vendors. They don't care, they can sue ebay and etsy too which is why they will be enforcing it. Etsy management has already stated they intend to enforce the regulations strictly. Anyone who lacks the official certification from an approved lab, will be banned from selling affected goods on Etsy.

The law is specific. There are civil and criminal penalties. One can be arrested on their door step and go to jail for five years for *knowingly* selling illegal goods. Other than this message I've sent you, I know you have been advised of the law by other parties and there's that email you sent which proves you are aware the law exists even if you don't understand that you, your visitors and your advertisers are affected. The law doesn't say you're off the hook if you don't agree or you don't understand that it doesn't apply to you. But like I said, I am gravely concerned because running Journal Modiste puts you at a higher level of liability, dispensing business advice with a vested interest in ad revenues which would surely cease once your advertisers knew this affects them.

This is an ugly ugly situation. We need everyone to come together and FIGHT this thing now, before it's too late. I urge you to assume the responsibility of the position of leadership into which you have inserted yourself.
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Valerie Burner
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Woohoo Kathleen!!! Wonderful letter! I will certainly use this for some of my postings! Thank you!
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Pamela
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Probably James Girone needs this letter. His website is absolutely the core site for wholesale children's goods.

http://www.jamesgirone.com/

Pam
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Kathleen F.
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Joined: 08 Sep 2005
Posts: 11437
Location: NM Albuquerque

PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pam, why don't you send it to him? I'm doing well enough to go after the ones I find. We each need to approach people we see who can help us. If they get duplicate mailings, so much the better!
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Pamela
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 1:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Letter sent and I am posting it in the other thread.

Pam
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