Aug 23, 2017
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Etsy vendors under fire for copying work from Guatemalan artisans

Aug 23, 2017

Created by an American couple, Ethical Fashion Guatemala hopes to put buyers directly in touch with Guatemalan artisans and take legal action against vendors on sites such as Etsy who sell Guatemalan products without the artisans consent.


American couple James Dillon and Kara Goebel recently founded Ethical Fashion Guatemala after living in the country for seven years. The site sells products such as textiles and leather goods directly from Guatemalan artisans to the United States. Products sold on Ethical Fashion Guatemala come from more than 40 weaving co-operatives made by more than 1,000 local craftmakers.
Beyond providing a transparent avenue to sell Guatemalan artisan crafts Goebel and Dillon have also identified Guatemalan products sold on sites like Etsy and Shopify and taken legal action against the vendor. The pair has found 64,000 products sold without the artisans’ consent on Etsy alone, some of which falsely claim the proceeds from the products will benefit the artisans themselves.

The legal proceedings against the vendors selling Guatemalan products without permission began in early August.

Goebel and Dillon have already spoken to the legal teams of Etsy, Google and Shopify to take down items sold on their sites that infringe upon the artisans’ copyrights to their own products.

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