This seller perfectly sums up Etsy poaching:
Here’s how I feel about all this, in a nut shell…..
Etsy does not bring buyers to our shops (aside from a very small amount of accidental overflow through a messed up internal search attempt), we have to find buyers ourselves. That is fine – we pay for the right to display our products on their site, for a small fee. They are just a venue. It is also a tremendous time suck and hit-or-miss undertaking with no promise of the hard work of finding customers panning out. If we can’t find our buyers, we have little, if any, chance of succeeding. To have the “venue” that you pay rent to arbitrarily syphon off our efforts of getting buyers into our shops, and then redirect them to our competition, is highway robbery in my book. Those buyers belong to the person who found them, since we have to harvest them. The venue obviously feels otherwise, for what reason, I cannot imagine. To have the venue help themselves and send them to our competition crosses so many ethical lines, I can hardly talk about it. There are a lot of things happening here that I think cross the line of ethics in so many ways…but as long as people, myself included, tolerate it, it will not change. It weighs heavily on me and as soon as I figure out an alternative market for my products, I will head there – pronto!