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Artist Beware - Chuuchichu

WHO: Chuuchichu
http://chuuchichu.deviantart.com/
https://www.pinterest.com/chuuchichu/
http://chuuland.tumblr.com/
http://chuuland.weebly.com/
http://www.gaiaonline.com/profiles/shadomu/28269981/
http://www.gaiaonline.com/profiles/bunnybutler/30781909/
Where: http://chuuchichu.deviantart.com/
What:
May 2014 - Custom character design
When: May 2014
Proof: http://imgur.com/a/PbFzw (Contains all the ones listed in this post along with a few extras)

Explain: In May 2014, Chuuchichu held an auction where she would design for the winner a custom character from her Nemu species. I won this auction at $220 ($227 overall with fees) on my side account, Celebibonbon (http://chuuchichu.deviantart.com/art/NEMU-Custom-Auction-CLOSED-451902408). My main is Vespisia. Details were exchanged via notes (http://imgur.com/oSNfXGm) (http://imgur.com/e8lgNzr) and payment was made (http://imgur.com/s7QG3ky). We gave each other our Skypes for easier access (http://imgur.com/VvBAogE), and work was begun (http://imgur.com/diHadyl) (http://imgur.com/zpj7ZFN) (http://imgur.com/6QA0QfA). Progress was pretty good; I attended a livestream (I believe it was a Join.Me in the first week of June 2014 or so) and watched get work done on my character and it was nearing completion in just that one session, just needed a few more touches and shading done and some cleaning up to become fully completed. Chuuchichu sent me another note a bit later, inquiring about possibly scheduling a new livestream time to finish up the custom.

[Read More]

Unfortunately, I dropped the ball during this part of the exchange, as I took several months to reply, during which time Chuuchichu sent me two notes that were follow-ups inquiring where I was (http://imgur.com/gtze9js) (http://imgur.com/UxXfd76). This part was certainly my fault. I would eventually reply to her in November 2014 (http://imgur.com/35EZWM6), and as can be seen in the screenshot (http://imgur.com/cQ9r61J), the note was read, but never replied to. Months would pass with no response, she had been fairly active before the advent of the custom auction, and afterwards, would be decently active, but I would realize in 2015 she stopped becoming active on DA and her many other sites around spring 2015 it seems.

In any case, on Deviantart, I sent her a note in June 2015, asking for an update (http://imgur.com/sQmBgwN). It was not read. I sent her another note on August 2015, that note was also unread (http://imgur.com/BDn6G1N). I recently sent her a note in October (http://imgur.com/4AWfNmr), and that was also unread(http://imgur.com/qSixMt3). I also left a comment on her profile in July 2015 (http://imgur.com/hTogVwO), asking for an update, which was also not replied to. At one point, an old friend of hers contacted me, asking if I might know where Chuuchichu was, because as mentioned previously, she had gone inactive. I replied I did not know, and she expressed sympathies concerning the pending custom, agreeing that it was not a fair deal to me. I also sent Chuuchichu a message on Skype in June 2015 (http://imgur.com/qTdjtfV), which was never replied to. Other attempts included sending an email directly in July 2015 (http://imgur.com/PxRBqwR), and even asking one of her old friends (http://imgur.com/1kvBMOE) and a group she belonged to if they knew where she might have went, but no one had any idea. I began to think perhaps she had a medical emergency or something highly serious and time-consuming at the very least. But last night (11/5/15), I found her Pinterest (https://www.pinterest.com/chuuchichu/), and it turned out she was active. It seems to be her indeed, and she pinned things just a day or two ago. At this point in time, I am looking into filing a chargeback as multiple attempts to contact her on various platforms have all consistently failed, and she is clearly active.



To summarize,
1. $227 commission for a custom character paid and started in May 2014.
2. Last discussion and update was June 2014
2.A. Part of this was definitely my fault as between June and November, she sent a few more notes, but I did not reply due to stressors from 'real life.'
3. Note sent from me to her in November 2014, was read and not replied to.
4. More notes sent in 2015 (three total), they are unread as of the moment, along with an email, a skype message, a profile comment on DA, and inquiring friends and groups if they knew where she is.
5. Found her on 11/5/15 clearly being active on Pinterest.
6. Looking into filing a chargeback now since multiple attempts at contact have failed.

[Edit 10/11/15: I did not send the payment via gifts, I sent it through services, but yes, I did pay the fee for her. v_v Sorry for the confusion of my wording!

Also, I've contacted Paypal and my bank on the 6th of this month or so, and both said it was too late now to file chargebacks. Instead, they advised me to take this to the police and the BBB, so here's hoping. I will be calling Paypal back though to let them know about how she had originally asked to send the payment + fees via the gift option.]

Thank you for your time, everyone.


EDIT/Adding more:
On March 3 of 2016, Chuuchichu logged onto Skype and I was able to reach out and talk to her. She apologized and quickly issued me a full refund and was very respectful and mature in her handling of the situation and knowledge of receiving a beware. I consider the situation resolved now and believe Chuuchichu acted admirably and sincerely in her resolution.

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Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
celestinaketzia
Nov. 11th, 2015 01:19 am (UTC)
Hahaha wow, so on top of making you pay the fees they also have you send it as a gift? How about no. Beware WELL warranted.

Unfortunately, you are definitely out of your time limit for a chargeback. The same can almost certainly be said for your CC if you used it as they tend to go 180 days, but it never hurts to call and ask!
apple_ramen
Nov. 11th, 2015 02:40 am (UTC)
Oh gosh, I edited to clarify that part. I refused to send the payment via gifts, but I did pay the fee...basically I sent the payment+fee through the services one.
And yes, I called my bank as well, they apparently have a 180 day policy as well, so it's too late for me now. :(
They advised me to go to the police, so that's what I'm doing now, I'm emailing the police department of her city in how to file a report and proceed on this matter. Potentially looking into contacting Better Business Bureau as well. A thoroughly unpleasant experience.
apple_ramen
Mar. 4th, 2016 03:16 am (UTC)
Hello, I'm not sure who to tell if a beware is resolved, so I hope messaging you in this way is ok. I've managed to reach Chuuchichu tonight, and have received my refund in a mature and civil manner and consider this resolved and well-handed.
celestinaketzia
Mar. 4th, 2016 03:18 am (UTC)
Alright!

I'll go ahead and mark that as resolved for you.
apple_ramen
Mar. 4th, 2016 03:30 am (UTC)
Thank you!
yuki_fox_demon
Nov. 11th, 2015 01:53 am (UTC)
I agree you dropped the ball by not replying, but if it was already nearing done, I'm not really sure why she would decide to just ignore you.

Also, the fact she actually asked you to cover the paypal fees and send them as a gift is a red flag itself. It's against paypal's policies to have a customer of a good/service do this, and I'm fairly sure it can get their paypal account suspended.
apple_ramen
Nov. 11th, 2015 02:42 am (UTC)
I'm not sure either, it literally truly only needed shading and a few color changes. I was in the livestream, she works VERY fast. I suppose she...didn't want to work on it anymore and ran off with the money? ?_? Who knows.

And ah, I clarified that in my post, apologies for the confusion! But no, I sent the payment via services, however, I did pay the fee. You raise a good point however, I'll call Paypal back and let them know she asked me to pay the fee, perhaps they can do something to her account at least...?
galagya
Dec. 4th, 2015 08:01 am (UTC)
I really, REALLY disagree with reporting her on Paypal, personally. This coming from someone who only has art as a means of getting an income right now, as many online artists do.

I am in no way defending this person. I just think that two wrongs don't make a right. Let's be frank, here: we all keep things from Paypal /regularly/. Adult art in general can't be sold, lots of furry art is problematic, etc. - yet we do it. If we don't personally break the rules, we know people who do and we do not report them, because it's not hurting anybody to break said rules. Also, a good bit of us used to use the gift method, or before that the other methods that were there to let us send without fees. It was cheaper all around, so we figured, why not? Later, it became known suddenly that it wasn't allowed. Slowly, it died out, but even today I find there are people who are unaware of it and still doing it. But I just let them know what will happen if Paypal finds out(on their own, I mean), & move on. We(artists and commissioners in the online art community at large, in general) do not tattle on one another.

What she did is messed up, surely enough. I cannot fathom why she would ask for fees on top of it being sent as a gift. Why, other than greed? & even then, just add it to the original price instead. It makes no sense.

But to potentially take away someone's entire income over it? Again, I'll just say: I strongly disagree.

In fact, I find that being posted here tends to really matter to an artist if they care at all. It'll be a big enough hit to her reputation to cause disruption already. Not to mention, drama. Oh, the drama... people who have never even met her will be talking up a storm for years to come(literally), whether she makes right or not, whether she changes her ways or not. So you have already definitely taken a huge, huge step here. & the right one, sadly, from my point of view. If it were me, I would leave it at this for now, and try messaging them again to see if anything comes from it. Maybe make the note read, "posted on A_B" or something to grab their attention...? I dunno. In any case, it's worth it to see if this will light a fire under their butt.

Then, if it doesn't after a while, THEN I would perhaps try everything else. That is, everything except trying to get their account suspended. I dunno, it just feels wrong and underhanded, to me. I just... okay I will stfu, I swear. I am just voicing my opinion, here. & ultimately, you are perfectly free to completely ignore it! You have your own thoughts, feelings, and opinions, after all. I hope you don't simply choose the ignoring and continue on the path you've lied down, but you are of course more than welcome to. So either way, I won't say another word, besides:

Good luck, & tc.
celestinaketzia
Dec. 4th, 2015 02:40 pm (UTC)
That's the risk you take when you don't produce work. Maybe if she did her work, then her clients wouldn't be disgruntled enough to contact Paypal about her shady behavior. I personally have zero sympathy for anyone who asks for fees and gifts and gets reported. There's plenty of Paypal alternatives out there that, guess what, charge higher fees.

Live and learn. Maybe she'll learn to be honest.
revalie
Nov. 12th, 2015 10:46 pm (UTC)
Filing a claim against Paypal through the BBB is the only way to get your money back at this point, but you likely WILL get your money back. I commissioned Pirate-Cashoo who went missing for ~2 years and couldn't get my money back from Paypal or my bank, filed a claim with BBB, and Paypal credited me the amount I was owed. So, if you file with BBB, you should be able to get something done. Mention in your claim how Paypal's ToS and chargeback window isn't helpful for digital commissioners due to how long artists can sometimes take and how dangerous it can be for buyers to not have an option from Paypal to get your money back. This is the best way to try and get your money back if Paypal won't do anything due to their claim window. :/ Good luck, and you can PM me on Remma @ FA or elissinia @ DA if you want more advice on the BBB claim process (I don't check LJ very often).

Edited at 2015-11-12 10:46 pm (UTC)
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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