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Hey everyone, I was commissioned for a fursuit head, which was completed and really adored by the commissioner, but that's not the issue. I'm really not sure how to approach the commissioner about the constant messages he sends me via Twitter and text (37 pages worth in a Word document...). He's a local fur that I've only recently met and I don't like hurting people's feelings.

So, here's the story:

I was approached on FA to commission a fursuit head for A. Once I got all A's info, I maintained what would be normal contact, i.e. letting A know the fur was backordered so there would be a slight delay, etc. As soon as that info was given to A, I was barraged with questions about fur, how I was going to make it, what I was going to use, etc. At this point, I asked A is they had read my TOS, they said yes. In my TOS, I have stated that sending me a lot of messages, harrassing me for information, could canel your commission. This continues throughout the process, ok, I admit I should've said more about my TOS to them again, but it was my first real commission for someone other then a friend. The commission is completed, A loves it. Sadly, A has continued to send me a lot of messages and doesn't seem ot understand that I, 1. Don't have time to sit around a chat, and 2. I really feel uncomforable with them acting like this.

Since I'm rather new to dealing with commissioners, I'm looking for a preferably gentle way to let A know this is unacceptable as I am unsure of how A will act otherwise. Advice would be greatly appreciated.

01/10/16 UPDATE - I received another note on FA from A. My commissions are now closed, but A asked if I could do another commission AND give them a discount because they already bought something from me. I politely told A that my commissions are currently closed and there is no discount for being a previous customer. I also added that I wanted to mantain a professional, business relationship with them, nothing more. So far, communications have gone quiet from A.

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Comments

( 18 comments — Leave a comment )
SweetPupperoo
Jan. 9th, 2016 01:29 am (UTC)
That's both annoying and difficult...if it were me, I would just ignore it and hope they go away. But obviously that doesn't work for this person so you really might need to take the direct approach and just politely ask them to stop. Especially as the commission is completed, no further contact is necessary. This kind of behavior is excessive and obsessive...not healthy at all for either of you. D: Tell them the truth, and if they get angry / abusive or continue...I strongly suggest blocking them. Even if it might lose you a potential future sale, it's not worth the damage to your sanity.
foxyanu
Jan. 9th, 2016 06:06 am (UTC)
Thank you. I've considered not taking a commission for them in the future also. I appreciate your help.
bornesb
Jan. 9th, 2016 01:34 am (UTC)
"
A,

Thank you for your commission. It was a pleasure doing business with you. If you would like to commission me in the future, please do not hesitate to submit an order when I am open.

Until that time, I apologize but I will not be able to answer any more of your messages unless they are of a business nature.

Thank you,
Foxyanu
"

Or if you don't want to give them that opening:

"
A,

Thank you for your commission. It was a pleasure doing business with you. Unfortunately, since our business has concluded, I will not be able to respond to any further personal messages.

Thank you,
Foxyanu
"

Or if you want to be as blunt as possible:

"
A,

Thank you for your commission. I do not accept numerous or personal messages, as is stated in my Terms of Service. This is a courtesy message to let you know I will no longer respond.
If you continue to send me messages, I will block you.

Thank you,
Foxyanu
"

Edited at 2016-01-09 01:35 am (UTC)
foxyanu
Jan. 9th, 2016 06:07 am (UTC)
Thank you. I appreciate the multiple choices. I didn't just want to blow a gasket at them.
bornesb
Jan. 9th, 2016 06:13 am (UTC)
Writing business letters can be difficult and it is definitely a practiced skill. I am sure you will be able to write your own in no time. =)

Edited at 2016-01-09 06:13 am (UTC)
gatekat
Jan. 9th, 2016 01:39 am (UTC)
What it reads to me is someone who is desperately lonely and thinks that because you agreed to talk to them about the commission you'll talk to them about everything and are their new best friend who has no more of a life than they do.

There's no way this won't get ugly, I expect. Only two responses come to mind:
1. Tell them point blank that you do not want to be their friend and contact is not welcome.
2. If that doesn't work, you block them on all sites you're on.

Someone with better a social temperament likely has a nicer way to say it.
foxyanu
Jan. 9th, 2016 06:05 am (UTC)
Thank you for your input. I appreciate it.
laughsatthunder
Jan. 9th, 2016 02:59 pm (UTC)
I actually wrote an A_B advice post about practically a year ago. Had a client who I stupidly added on Facebook and they asked a million questions during the process, then proceeded to comment on every post I made and message me every day after I shipped the item/after it was in their hands.

Don't be afraid to tell them that you don't wish to communicate further after the completion of the commission unless they're interested in commissioning you again. It might hurt their feelings a little bit but it's going to be so relieving in the end.
foxyanu
Jan. 11th, 2016 04:16 am (UTC)
Thanks. Glad I'm not the only one who did this. I have sent a polite request to them stating that we can discuss potential business, but nothing personal. I hope they understand.
dinogrrl
Jan. 9th, 2016 04:08 pm (UTC)
The other commenters gave great advice for how to handle the situation right now. My suggestions are for the future:

I would suggest that you choose one, MAYBE two, forms of contact for commissions. Maybe one website (like FA), but definitely one email or whatever that is dedicated to business (or set up filters on your personal email for commissions). It helps to keep a more professional appearance, and also to cut some of the chatty-ness from more 'friendly' customers who think they've got a foothold into your personal space. Then check the business email once a day, period. Let the customers know you only check it once daily, and that if they want the best service, they should send one email a day, max, with all their questions, not a billion separate emails where info is easily lost.

And yes, if you have something written in your TOS about harassment, you need to stand by it. Otherwise, what's the point of having a TOS? Your TOS is there to protect you!

Part of being a businessperson is learning how to set these sorts of boundaries for yourself. It can feel 'mean' at first, but trust me, it's not. It's saving yourself from aggravation and wasted time :}.
foxyanu
Jan. 11th, 2016 04:12 am (UTC)
Thank you. Since this person is local, in the same state, it's been a tough call. I really appreciate what you said and will take it to heart from now on.
teekchan
Jan. 10th, 2016 02:40 am (UTC)
Be prepared to have them react badly. I have had a LOT of commissioners tell me Im a horrible person because I dont talk friendly to them, but keep business as business, and dont befriend commissions.

I have no idea where people get this mindset.

I tend to just ignore them. Or write one or two letter responses. They eventually get the hint.
foxyanu
Jan. 11th, 2016 04:14 am (UTC)
Sadly, this one didn't get the hint. I sent over a polite note through FA asking that I was interested in a business relationship only and wanted it to remain professional. I hope they understand...
(Deleted comment)
foxyanu
Jan. 22nd, 2016 05:19 am (UTC)
Thank you. I may end up blocking them on Twitter as they message me there also. I like your idea about using one form of correspondence, I think I'll do that.
mortymaxwell
Jan. 11th, 2016 03:20 pm (UTC)
Good luck. I hope they understand and act professionally.

It sounds like this person's very clingy and also inexperienced when it comes to commissions, because they are also asking for special discounts. Not a cool thing to ask an artist.
foxyanu
Jan. 22nd, 2016 05:18 am (UTC)
Thanks. I agree about the discount thing. They asked me almost right away when I was first commissioned if I had any special discounts, that should've been a red flag for me.
Slipping_Star
May. 6th, 2016 01:55 am (UTC)
Thank you for posting this, I've had a similar situation recently so all of this is really helpful.
( 18 comments — Leave a comment )

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