Walker recently wrote a story for Wired Magazine with the headline, "Can Etsy Go Pro Without Losing Its Soul?" Here’s why: Etsy makes money from its sellers: 20 cents every time they list an item and 3.5 percent of every sale. Today, there are some 800,000 sellers.
Etsy has gotten very big, very fast. This year, sales are at about $800 million. "Their growth on all the major metrics you want to look at has accelerated really consistently," says journalist Rob Walker.
The term handicrafts can also refer to the products themselves of such artisanal efforts, that require specialized knowledge, may be highly technical in their execution, require specialized equipment and/or facilities to produce, involve manual labor or a blue-collar work ethic, are accessible to the general public, and are constructed from materials with histories that exceed the boundaries of Western "fine art" tradition, such as ceramics, glass, textiles, metal and wood.
But they don’t all share the values Etsy promotes, which Walker calls a "kind of moral purity of the handmade as a response to the alienation of mass-manufacturing culture."