Licensing Infringement of Greek Trademarks is Applied to Etsy Handmade Sorority Gifts
Etsy Stores that sell handmade sorority gifts with trademarked insigna, are being notified by Affinity Consultants, "to remove any listings containing our clients’ trademarks from your Etsy shop within two (2) weeks of the date of this letter. If any items are not removed within two weeks of this notice, we will contact Etsy’s Legal Department to remove or disable any infringing activity."
I enjoy looking at the creative sorority gifts that have been available on Etsy, and I have posted some of those especially creative ones like Sarah's letters, in appreciation of their beauty and style. Most of the readers who visit Sorority Sisters are looking for unique sorority gifts that they can make or buy. If Etsy Stores that sell sorority gifts are shut down, it will be a great loss.
I am sympathetic to artists that will never do enough sorority business to warrant the price of licensing, but who thoroughly enjoy making sorority gifts on a very small scale, especially custom orders that are personalized by request. I am one of those artists and have enjoyed making some things like the sorority hang pillows.
As a sorority member, are you free to purchase a handmade sorority gift?
Affinity Consultants says that:
"We must also make you aware that neither members nor chapters of the various Greek organizations are authorized to grant commercial use of their organization’s trademarks and are required to purchase products exclusively from licensed vendors."
From my experience, the girls that are in the sororities do not agree that they are not allowed to request a pillow or other sorority gift to be made with the Greek Letters. They consider that their personal freedom.
My tiny Etsy store ,that has mainly offered the handmade hang up pillows, is warmly applauded by those who request a special order like these two:
I searched online for days for unique gifts, but every site I found was never customizable beyond the most widespread sororities or wildly expensive. Then I found this store and everything fell into place. Service was fast and the product was affordable and beautifully made. I could only ask for more items to choose from! Thanks sororitygifts
Thank you, thank you, thank you so much! I appreciate your willingness and ability to create a special order for me and get it to me in less than a week! The pillows are super cute and I can't wait to give them to the girls!
My website , Sorority Sisters, provides ideas for handmade sorority gifts, hoping that you will enjoy making your own gifts for little or big sisters. But, I also think that the handmade sorority gifts that have been available on Etsy in the past, are a great asset for those who desire unique sorority gifts and prefer to purchase. Too bad the trademark licensing is being applied to small time artists!
By seeking out home crafters on Etsy with their warning, Affinity Marketing Consultants is trying to eliminate the small artist and take away the unique and creative sorority sister gifts that the members want and seek out.
By sending out their letter to small artists, they are saying that we either have to have a big sorority merchandise business or nothing. It cuts out the most special sorority gift creations that many sorority members search for.
I am wondering what you think about this. Please share your thoughts.
Filed under: Sorority Merchandise