Feminist Review Spam

16 Aug

A blog called Feminist Review is spamming Etsy shops with a vengeance about getting freebies sent to them to review on their blog.
http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6188227
http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6162028

Unfortunately sending an item to India for free does not mean it will even be a good review..
http://feministreview.blogspot.com/2009/08/state-quarter-necklace.html

Thoughts?

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61 Responses to “Feminist Review Spam”

  1. Christine August 16, 2009 at 2:58 pm #

    They sound like pompous assholes at the feministreview blog. I’d never send a free item and then have them tell me that I would be charged return shipping. No way. Wouldn’t happen.

  2. Bedazzled Condom August 16, 2009 at 3:22 pm #

    “Mandy, did you return the necklace? It seems like the ethical thing to do.”

    Right on, NIgel.

    Mandy is an ignoramous.

  3. hobo August 16, 2009 at 4:21 pm #

    why do you think they requested the necklace if they hated it so much? what a scam

  4. 209 August 16, 2009 at 6:01 pm #

    On their title:
    Feminist Review believes that all opinions – positive and critical – are valuable and seeks to give voice to communities that remain on the margins. Our mission is to write reviews from feminist perspectives to explore the world through an anti-oppression lens. We recognize that there are many feminisms and provide a space where those differences can be represented and explored. (That means we want you to add your opinions too.)

    They haven’t published the comment I left on that blog post, so I guess that means they don’t really care to explore the differences represented in my opinions…

  5. forum rubbernecker August 16, 2009 at 6:04 pm #

    I love the response in the thread that says to send an invoice and tell them you will ship when the payment goes through. Priceless!

  6. Lorrie August 17, 2009 at 2:44 am #

    I wrote that i would warn other Etsians about giving them free product and they make it seem like I pulled a Tony Soprano on Mandy’s ass. Pretty wimpy for feminists, I’d say.

  7. Kirsi August 17, 2009 at 2:54 am #

    Was it your comments that were removed, Lorrie? It seems OK to call the ones criticizing “weirdos”, though…

  8. Freckleyredhead August 17, 2009 at 4:50 am #

    So let’s see here . . . I’m supposed to send them a free piece, then they *might* review it and the review *might* be positive, and if I want it back I have to pay shipping to have it returned?

    What’s in this for me, exactly?

  9. Brenda August 17, 2009 at 4:56 am #

    They haven’t published the comment I left on that blog post, so I guess that means they don’t really care to explore the differences represented in my opinions…>>>

    they didn’t post mine either…it was not favourable (polite but to the point)…

  10. Lorrie August 17, 2009 at 5:40 am #

    Apparently the only comments they feel should be published are in Portugese or are the ones that refer to those with differing opinions as “weirdos.”

    If disagreeing with them is wrong, I don’t wanna be right.

  11. MadeByM**** August 17, 2009 at 5:42 am #

    I understand and actually agree with her point about wearing money as jewelry in front of those that don’t have any money…..but past that, it’s just a way to get free stuff. Too bad for the sellers that sent them something.

  12. JK August 17, 2009 at 6:02 am #

    Talk about milking a cause to get free stuff! I’m really wondering how this site helps women or advances feminism at all. Wouldn’t the ‘right’ thing be for them to use the goods they get to raise money for others?

  13. Feminist Review August 17, 2009 at 7:26 am #

    The necklace was not sent to India by Wabisabi. But it seems this contrived vendetta has moved past the point of facts being relevant. All comments on this post will be rejected because our blog will not be used as a site for juvenile bullying.

    Don’t bother responding. I wont’ be back to see your comments.

  14. Lorrie August 17, 2009 at 7:44 am #

    I love how this has moved to being A CONTRIVED VENDETTA.

    Apparently if you disagree with the viewpoint of the site, you are considered a juvenile bully, regardless of how politely you word your opinion. For me this turned personal only when my comment was deleted and I was banned, and she published my full name and intimated that I had made some serious threat worthy of calling the authorities. But still I did not comment on her site again.

    I sent a very politely worded email asking why the “weirdos” comment was allowed to remain but mine was deleted. Here is her response:

    No more comments will be allowed on that post, as it has become a
    playground for bullies, like yourself, who would like to turn Feminist
    Review into a site for some ridiculous and contrived vendetta against
    one of our writers simply because she expressed a political sentiment
    you and your friends disagree with. Feminist Review has published
    several reviews that are less than favorable (some written in a far
    more caustic manner) for a given product, but this type of overblown
    response that you people are demonstrating is quite rare, I can assure
    you. Probably because most people recognize that throwing tantrums in
    public isn’t good for their own business. Well, unless you’re Glenn
    Beck or someone who makes a living on that sort of thing. Regardless,
    this type of behavior has nothing to do with the mission of Feminist
    Review, and so it will not be allowed to continue on the blog. The
    same way Feminist Review will not be used as a site for nonsense
    accusations, neither will I engage in them. You won’t get the petty
    drama you seek here.

    Apparently, debate, discussion & opinions that differ from theirs are nothing more than drama.

    And I’ll bet she WILL be back. I don’t think she’ll be able to help herself, LOL.

  15. 209 August 17, 2009 at 7:54 am #

    The FACTS, Feminist Review, is that your writer misrepresented herself by giving the artist all positive product reviews for reference, grossly misleading the artist to think that it was just a straight up product review like the rest.

    The writer then decided to use the jewelry piece as part of a political commentary, to which the artist and peers had a huge issue with.

    And instead of owning up to that and letting the discussion continue on the grounds of open critique of both sides (as your mission states), you banned all the artists (those who personally knew the artist as well as those who didn’t), who tried to point out that problem via comments on your blog.

    Never mind that the writer got a free necklace for herself, and that you got a (now hugely popular) post and a whole group of people who now know of your existence.

    Never mind that there wasn’t even forewarning the artist that the item would have been used in such a context.

    Never mind the fact that you called out an actual artist on your own comments without leaving up the “threatening” comment for everyone to judge it for what it is.

    The most disgusting thing is that you NOT ONCE even bothered to recognize the possibility that your writer may have caused some serious financial harm to an independent artist who was merely trying to get a product some exposure.

    NOT ONCE.

    Why are you not holding yourself (or your writer) responsible for this backlash?

    And here you are on Etsy (and lord knows where else) trying to solicit more free samples for your “product reviews,” possibly to the detriment of women designers and you think this outrage is some “contrived vendetta?”

    Are you fucking kidding me??

  16. Bedazzled Condom August 17, 2009 at 8:08 am #

    “All comments on this post will be rejected because our blog will not be used as a site for juvenile bullying.”

    So says the biggest bully of them all.

    Bwahahaha!

    I have to ask, what exactly IS the “mission” of Feminist Review? To make people feel like crap for being generous and hopeful? To stomp on their cooperation?

    If so, congratulations! You’re succeeding quite well.

    Your moms must be so proud of their angry little girls.

  17. Insane August 17, 2009 at 8:09 am #

    Gotta love people that just want free stuff and once they get it, they tear down the people that gave it to them.
    Ridiculous and this is the MAIN reason I never give free stuff. I’ve been reviewed by many blogs and ALWAYS they have paid for the items. Same with magazines and other forms of publicity. I have even rented items out.

  18. Kirsi August 17, 2009 at 8:58 am #

    I wonder if they learned the lesson and stop spamming Etsy sellers… I tried to comment on the “feminist” blog too, I just couldn’t stop myself after the weirdo post, especially when I totally agreed with the last anonymous post.

    So, “Sue”: Calling yourself Sue doesn’t make you any less anonymous than posting without a name, unless you provide a link to something to show who you are.

    All my other points have been written by others. (Not my friends, since I don’t even know them.)

  19. Lindsey August 17, 2009 at 8:59 am #

    I thought it was funny that all through the comments it was blasting about representing yourself properly (i.e. if you were a friend of the seller), but “Feminist Review” fails to mention that the author of the review is in fact the founder of the blog.
    Chances are the posts listed as by FR are actually her.

    “Mandy Van Deven (aka Ama Lee) founded Feminist Review in 2006 and is a freelance writer in Kolkata, India”–blog post 8/10/09

  20. 209 August 17, 2009 at 9:13 am #

    OMG Lindsey! HAHAHA! I didn’t even catch that!!

  21. Lorrie August 17, 2009 at 9:21 am #

    OMG-that is THE FUNNIEST thing. I love how she makes it out like Ama is taking up her side, and getting her back. She often refers to herself as “the author.”

    (Hi Mandy/Ama– cuz you know she is reading this!!! The fact that she is the founder of the blog explains SO MUCH.)

    Meanwhile, the solidarity shown by Etsians and the New York Team in particular is real and very palpable. What a great group of people. Lindsey you rock for exposing the man behind the curtain!!!

  22. Christine August 17, 2009 at 9:53 am #

    hey ya’ll – i’d like every single one of you to send me a free item that you make and sell, pay to ship it directly to me (preferably with Confirmation and Shipping insurance to be sure it does not arrive to me damaged) so that I can 1. have a free product and 2. write a over zealous whack job review on my blog and 3. so I can single handedly tear down your business behind your hopeful back and write non-sense that has nothing to do with the original product or mission statement.

    K? I’ll email you all my shipping address once you email me your interest. Thank you.

    Sincerely,

    Douche Bag

    P.S. If you want the product back, I will also email you my pay pal address to ship the funds directly to me so that I might mail your item back to you, after I verbally tear your art apart.

    /end sarcasm.

  23. toonces August 17, 2009 at 10:08 am #

    Feminist, my ass.

  24. JK August 17, 2009 at 10:37 am #

    Somehow, ‘Feminist Review’, I doubt this was the kind of thing my mother, grandmother and great-grandmother had in mind while they fought for women to be equal citizens. I know it isn’t how *I* conduct myself when I represent myself as a feminist.

    Shame on you.

  25. Virginia August 17, 2009 at 11:50 am #

    I bet you she’s been back to read all these comments. I still don’t see what “feminism” has anything to do with publicly bashing someone’s work. I thought it doesn’t matter if you’re female or male or somewhere in between? We’re in an age where we should be past being so outwardly negative to anyone or particular thing. It’s our responsibility to be better than that. We should be helping everyone rise up, not pushing them down.

  26. Nobody Understands My Pain Either August 17, 2009 at 1:05 pm #

    I wrote the last “anonymous” comment on the blog. I thought my questions were legitimate and far from “incoherent ranting.” If it makes anyone from Feminist Review feel better, my name is also “Sue.” There. Now I’m not anonymous anymore, right? I’m as publicly identifiable as that other Sue. Also, I’m not quite sure why it seems so fishy for me to state that I’m not affiliated with the Brooklyn Indie group or the artist who made the necklace. Feminist Review made sure to point out the posters who WERE affiliated….why shouldn’t I point out that I’m not? I don’t have to have a personal relationship with the artist to notice some things about the review that seem suspect.

  27. meh August 17, 2009 at 1:55 pm #

    They haven’t published the comment I left on that blog post, so I guess that means they don’t really care to explore the differences represented in my opinions…>>>

    they didn’t post mine either…it was not favourable (polite but to the point)…

    ————–

    they didn’t post mine either. while i agreed with the idea that it may be offensive, i criticized the author for having selecting that piece purposefully with an obvious agenda.

    i even suggested that if she had written a piece on the topic of wearing money as a fashion statement in impoverished areas rather than soliciting a free item from a hard working artisan (and tearing it apart because of social issues) than it would have probably gone over a bit better.

    i just want to know how reviewing jewelry, and wondering if a piece will get you “compliments” fits into their work as feminists. as a woman/feminist myself i really don’t care what gets me compliments, and if i were to stumble onto a site called the “feminist review” i wouldn’t expect to see jewelry, and soap reviews. if i wanted that, i would pick up a copy of cosmopolitan. but as a feminist, i personally don’t believe in supporting those types of magazines. no offense to anyone who reads them 🙂

    it just leads me to believe that they are tolling for free products in exchange for the promise of publicity (which to an artisan selling online is like gold) just to wear on a friday night out to make themselves feel pretty, and get them “compliments”.

  28. meh August 17, 2009 at 1:58 pm #

    haha now that i think about it, i wonder just how many angry comments they actually got, but never posted.

  29. toonces August 17, 2009 at 3:10 pm #

    Gotta love the mission statement at the top of the page, which contains such hilarity as “Feminist Review believes that all opinions – positive and critical – are valuable” and “we want you to add your opinions too”.

    Uh-huh.

  30. oh joy! August 17, 2009 at 4:57 pm #

    a bunch of wierdos who spam and a colossal waste of time imo
    must be a slow news day…

  31. 209 August 17, 2009 at 4:58 pm #

    I really think they owe that artist an apology.

  32. Arty August 17, 2009 at 5:42 pm #

    Looks like this blogger picked up some tips from the Admin at Etsy. Her way of “muting” is to not let post through at all:/

  33. Amy August 18, 2009 at 12:53 am #

    anyone seen boutiqueitaliana’s response?? what do you think? i still dont get how 1 person can make enough to supply all the online stores that sell those bags?!

  34. 209 August 18, 2009 at 4:56 am #

    Looks like Feminist Review updated the post [to which I’ll respond so she can see how baseless the Editor’s Comment is]:

    “Editor’s Comment: No more comments will be allowed on this post, as it has become a playground for a group of etsy/indie designer bullies who would like to turn Feminist Review into a site for some ridiculous and contrived vendetta against one of our writers simply because she expressed a political sentiment they disagree with…”

    [No, we’re simply stating that Feminist Review should’ve been more forthcoming from the beginning to let the artist know you were going to use her jewelry as political fodder. As for “playground for a group of etsy/indie designer bullies,” it’s funny that Feminist Review resorts to calling people names and stops them from expressing their critique of the post.]

    “…(or, more entertaining, who they see as having participated in a conspiratorial plot against Wabisabi)…”

    [Not once has anyone said anything about “conspiratorial plot.” Again, it’s about the context of how her jewelry was used that was the issue. It’s funny how Feminist Review has never addressed this.]

    “…Much of the information being circulated in the etsy/designer realm of the blogosphere about the way this review came about is inaccurate—such as the claim that this necklace was sent by the designer to India at her own cost, which it untrue as the necklace was requested by a FR Editor and sent to FR’s office in Georgia, not the writer directly. This can be verified by asking MaryAnne LoVerme at Wabisabi.”

    [Regardless of where it was sent first, the fact is, Feminist Review took a necklace that was supposed to be used as a straight up product review as (told to the artist), and turned it into a commentary on how it’s illegal to use currency in such a way… (But yet the writer makes no qualms about keeping a necklace she received for free, even though she thinks “it ain’t $100 or six months in jail cute..)” Again, Feminist Review has yet addressed this issue.]

    “…I shouldn’t have to remind grown adults about the import of information being based in fact, not speculation and blatant falsehoods…”

    [Again, you told the artist it was a product review and instead, made it into the center of a personal essay filled with political statements. And to add insult to injury, you think it’s okay for you to keep the necklace to wear personally when you’re back in the U.S. even though you state “it ain’t $100 or six months in jail cute.” No one should have to remind a “publication” of its own published comments.]

    “…We have published several reviews that are less than favorable (some written in a far more caustic manner) for a given product, but this type of overblown response that some people are demonstrating is quite rare, I can assure you…”

    [Not once did you mention to the artist that you were going to use it as political commentary. You contacted the artist under FALSE PRETENSES. Again, this is why so many people have taken up issue. Not sure why you think this is overblown. You basically lied and got a free necklace and you think this response is overblown??]

    “…Probably because most people recognize that throwing tantrums in public isn’t good for their own business. Well, unless you’re Glenn Beck or someone who makes a living on that sort of thing. Either way, the ganging up of anti-feminist trolls who perpetuate oppressive myths about catfighting and female irrationality is in direct opposition to the mission of Feminist Review, and only serves to make women in general and etsy and indie designers in specific look foolish, so it will not be allowed to continue on this blog.”

    [What is irrational is how Feminist Review took a piece of jewelry from a woman artist under false pretenses (of supporting women) and used it as personal and political fodder. What is foolish is that Feminist Review takes absolutely no responsibility for the growing backlash, and has now resorted to blanket name-calling ALL critiquers of the problem post “anti-feminist trolls”. Exactly what “myths” are being perpetuated here? And why are you labeling this as a catfight when it’s a serious critique of how Feminist Review handled the situation?]

    Own up to it Feminist Review.
    Address the issue at hand.
    Apologize to the artist.
    Return her necklace.
    That’s just the right thing to do.

  35. Karina August 18, 2009 at 5:30 am #

    This whole “asking for the item free” must be new.

    When I was reviewed on their blog, they purchased the item outright….mind you, even though it was a positive review, I was not pleased still.

    They never informed me that my item was being purchased to review (the buyer was just a “regular name and address”…which is ok, however, the item they chose to review was a SAMPLE square purchased for less than a $1. And then reviewed the sample talking about it as though it were a full size bar, which totally didn’t make sense when reading it. It sounded in the end like all of my soaps are only 1oz big.

    While it’s great that I got a positive review…they never linked to my site, nor mentioned my shop name—just used my full name lifted from their Etsy transaction receipt…so what was the point??

  36. meh August 18, 2009 at 5:31 am #

    …soooo because i don’t agree with this review i’m not only am i an anti-feminist, but mine (and many other) constructive disagreements way perpetuates the myth of catty, irrational women.

    i forgot that being a feminist means that you are supposed to take a cue from men, and act like one. or you may risk being called catty, or many of the other ugly words that have been used to describe women for far too long. shame on a feminist for even using such words.

    why can’t i act like a woman/feminist who feels like an author of a blog is using something as noble as the feminist movement to acquire free jewelry, and soap?

    why can’t i act like a woman/feminist who feels just a bit uneasy about an author who seems to support female artisans, yet solicits an item from one with her own political agenda already written in her head before she receives the item.

    i saw a few comments here and there throughout the blogosphere that left a bad taste in my mouth regarding the author perhaps having some masculine traits, and as a feminist i hate those comments. but also as a feminist, sadly i have heard those, and will always hear those.

    but to you dear author, as a feminist you should rise above the hurtful comments. you should entertain the constructive criticism offered by other women/artisans/feminists. you as a feminist should know better than to accuse those who don’t agree with the way you went about reviewing a product of perpetuating hurtful stereotypes.

  37. meh August 18, 2009 at 5:51 am #

    furthermore, if the writer herself did not request the necklace, and it was simply sent to her randomly from “home office” in ga. i think it would have been helpful to note that in the article.

    the politics in the post would have made much more sense, and perhaps the artisans, and myself included, would have had a better understanding of the authors intentions.

    reviewing handmade products comes with a lot of responsibility. you can cause great detriment to a small business when attaching your political/ethical opinion to a product.

  38. Kirsi August 18, 2009 at 5:58 am #

    As far as I know, making jewelry out of US coins is not illegal, unless it is done with fraudulent intent:

    http://www.usmint.gov/consumer/18USC331.cfm?flash=no
    http://answers.google.com/answers/threadview/id/77334.html

    From the latter, you can see that there might be some copyrights to take into consideration, when using the coins commercially.

    (I’m not from the USA, but this has come up on the Etsy forum a couple of times.)

  39. JK August 18, 2009 at 6:06 am #

    Nicely said, Meh. Nicely said, indeed.

  40. Lorrie August 18, 2009 at 8:24 am #

    I totally love you 209. If I were younger, I would offer to bear your children.

  41. 209 August 18, 2009 at 9:39 am #

    Thanks, Lorrie. I call it as I see it.

    The mark of any good publication is on how well they handle criticism. In this case, we see just how one-sided Feminist Review really is.

  42. Nobody Understands My Pain Either August 18, 2009 at 11:40 am #

    Again, if the item was not even sent to the reviewer in India, why did Feminist Review even need the actual item to write the review? This isn’t “bullying,” these are legitimate questions.

    It seems odd that a feminist publication would prefer that we all keep our opinions to ourselves…

  43. Max August 18, 2009 at 2:17 pm #

    I have no idea why everyone cares about Feminist Review.

    However, regarding the Etsy listing, it is illegal to deface and sell currency. Etsy’s TOU states they don’t allow illegal items, so this item should be removed.

  44. 209 August 18, 2009 at 2:48 pm #

    According to the law link, there is no fraudulent intent, therefore, it is NOT illegal. The shop that uses the currency specifically states that the coin is used as jewelry. She isn’t selling currency.

  45. Bedazzled Condom August 19, 2009 at 8:02 am #

    What the law says:

    “Whoever fraudulently alters, defaces, mutilates, impairs, diminishes, falsifies, scales, or lightens any of the coins coined
    at the mints of the United States, or any foreign coins which are by law made current or are in actual use or circulation
    as money within the United States; or

    Whoever fraudulently possesses, passes, utters, publishes, or sells, or attempts to pass, utter, publish, or sell, or brings
    into the United States, any such coin, knowing the same to be altered, defaced, mutilated, impaired, diminished, falsified,
    scaled, or lightened—

    Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.”

    Keywords are “FRAUDULENTLY” “ACTUAL USE” and “CIRCULATION.”

    Have you ever heard of the owner of an elongated penny machine being fined or sent to prison?

    Come on. Use your brains, people.

  46. i was born with a plastic spoon in my mouth August 19, 2009 at 11:06 am #

    How interesting that no one has anything to say about Feminist Review’s several positive reviews of other Etsy seller’s products. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen Etsians have a kitten over something critical being said about something sold on Etsy – even though the criticism is hardly a slam, and obviously isn’t personal.

  47. 209 August 19, 2009 at 11:46 am #

    plastic spoon, read comment #15

  48. i was born with a plastic spoon in my mouth August 19, 2009 at 12:48 pm #

    I did. What’s your point?

  49. JK August 19, 2009 at 5:28 pm #

    Etsy isn’t the point, Plastic. If you can’t see any of the relevant points already mentioned, there’s really no purpose in attempting any kind of discussion with you, is there?

  50. Bedazzled Condom August 19, 2009 at 6:24 pm #

    “How interesting that no one has anything to say about Feminist Review’s several positive reviews of other Etsy seller’s products. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen Etsians have a kitten over something critical being said about something sold on Etsy – even though the criticism is hardly a slam, and obviously isn’t personal.”

    Ten bucks says this poster has the same IP number as Mandy the Angry Feminist.

  51. Christine August 19, 2009 at 8:36 pm #

    oohhh yea I bet! I wonder if the Moderator of this blog can see and tell us!

  52. 209 August 20, 2009 at 5:52 am #

    Etsy isn’t the point, Plastic. If you can’t see any of the relevant points already mentioned, there’s really no purpose in attempting any kind of discussion with you, is there?

    ***
    Thank you, JK.

  53. i was born with a plastic spoon in my mouth August 20, 2009 at 10:47 am #

    Nope, I’m not in any way associated with Feminist Review. Or Etsy. I’m just here to pet the drama llamas. 😀

  54. meh August 20, 2009 at 10:54 am #

    *thinks about how cut petting llamas, and having kittens is*

    🙂

  55. meh August 20, 2009 at 11:30 am #

    cut=cute 🙂

  56. Bedazzled Condom August 20, 2009 at 12:03 pm #

    Sigh, does anyone else remember the good ole’ days of the internet when comment shills would make an honest effort to invent believable lies?

    Good times!

  57. Laura August 21, 2009 at 5:56 pm #

    Plastic. Are you 12?

    Read post #15. Comment on that. Why is it that NO ONE from the FR blog addresses those issues?

  58. Bill Bartmann September 2, 2009 at 8:27 am #

    Great site…keep up the good work.

  59. louise September 3, 2009 at 11:25 pm #

    who’s Nigel?

  60. Bill Bartmann September 4, 2009 at 4:40 am #

    Excellent site, keep up the good work

  61. 209 September 4, 2009 at 12:21 pm #

    Read post #15. Comment on that. Why is it that NO ONE from the FR blog addresses those issues?

    ***
    Because they know they’re in the wrong and they can’t.

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