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Trying to be "nice"

I want to share this, because I think it is something that people ought to consider.

I have had a few people who were trying to be "nice" to me, and didn't want to hurt my feelings, so they didn't tell me about problems with fursuits that I have made for them. They are nice people, and I appreciate the gesture, but this is not being nice, for a number of reasons.

Firstly, this means I never have the chance to fix the issue. Sometimes there are things the can't be fixed, and yes it can be hard to put an artist in the position of having to say "I'm sorry, but you're SOL." But if you never even give them the chance to make things right, is this really fair?

Secondly, although these people never spoke to me, they were not shy about telling others about this problem. (That's how I found out this had happened on one recent occasion, was getting it from a third party.) This means that my reputation is being harmed by an issue I was never given a chance to fix. This distresses me greatly.

And thirdly, it's not nice because it's hurting all my future customers. I have been doing something that can potentially cause severe problems (it usually hasn't, but it can) to probably 90% of the fursuits I've made for the last two years. Two years worth of my customers have a flawed product, and though I don't know how many of them have actually experienced the problem, I know one person who got their suit very nearly two years ago DID experience this problem, and never so much as breathed a word of it to me. If he had, even if I couldn't have fixed his suit, I could certainly have refrained from using that method on all the suits I made during that period! Instead I'm left wondering how many people have this problem, and how badly my repuation has been hurt by having shoddy product out there, when I had no idea that there was any potential problem whatsoever.*

So please... this is not asking for customers to pitch a fit and be rude about flaws, but you really aren't doing anybody any favors when you insist that it's perfect when in fact it has some major problems! It is very possible to report problems and do it politely. Really it is. So you might want to consider that before you decide to be "nice" and not bother an artist who has made you something you're not happy with. Particularly if you're then going to go around telling everybody about said problems.

*This is something I do in my own personal suits too, of course, but is only an issue if the suit wearer sweats a ton, and I don't, so I've never noticed it myself, and had no idea there was any issue at all until tonight. I'm not a happy camper right now.

P.S. And I have to add that it's so far from not being nice that it turns into being a downright douchebag when instead of approaching an artist privately with problems, you decide to air them publicly first. If the first thing I hear about a problem is seeing it on a public community post, and I had no idea the problem existed before you chose to tell the entire world about it, well...
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Comments

( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
thaily
Nov. 30th, 2008 11:51 pm (UTC)
Yeah, that's not being nice. That's just being passive agressive, and that's really fucking annoying.
Maybe you can send out forms for people fill out when they have received their items, like a little survey to ask what aspects of the transaction they and didn't like, if they have any suggestions or complaints.. Nothing complicated, just something short and multiple choice.
greenreaper
Dec. 1st, 2008 12:40 am (UTC)
Better yet, send it out three months later, after they've had a chance to actually use it for a significant period of time.
bladespark
Dec. 1st, 2008 12:49 am (UTC)
Good idea, really. *nods*
draken_art
Dec. 1st, 2008 02:24 pm (UTC)
Yeah really. This is an awesome idea. :)
casteddreams
Dec. 1st, 2008 01:11 am (UTC)
I know what you mean.

And this seems to happen to a lot of 2D artists too. x_X
thrivis
Dec. 1st, 2008 02:05 am (UTC)
Wow, that's terrible. :( I try to let everyone I work with know upfront they should tell me exactly what they want so I can execute it, and tell me if there is anything needed changing along the way. Hence if they never say anything about an issue, it's not my fault I can't fix it! You can only work with what you know, we're not psychic.

I'm sorry that happened to you, that you had to learn about a flaw in your work a pretty hard way. :(
(Deleted comment)
bladespark
Dec. 1st, 2008 07:34 am (UTC)
Nah, the problem is with the markers I used to color the irises. They're not colorfast, so I use a spray sealant on them. But it didn't actually seal as effectively as it was supposed to.
privatepony
Dec. 1st, 2008 04:55 am (UTC)
Sorry I never said anything to you about it. I didn't actually wear my suit until FF this year, which is when I had the issue. I just fixed it myself and shrugged it off. It's not that I was trying to shield you from any negative remarks or anything like that. It's an issue that I could fix myself...so...I did. I'mma get with you later about some other stuff, then.
bladespark
Dec. 1st, 2008 06:43 am (UTC)
*ahem* Sorry for my previous comment here. I was a bit out of sorts earlier. Seeing that other post was something of a shock.
frazzled_niya
Dec. 1st, 2008 06:13 am (UTC)
=( That sucks. I thought if someone paid for a product if it wasn't right it was common sense to just notify the artist/person about the problem? I mean some people might be peeved about it but can't they just write you an email.

Hi,
I got the fursuit I commissioned from you the other day. ___________ seems to be faulty and doesn't work. Are you able to fix it?

From,
Blah

o_O
bladespark
Dec. 1st, 2008 06:16 am (UTC)
*nods* I have gotten those messages, so I guess some people can. :) They're annoying in that they mean more work for me, but I would MUCH rather that than have people being unhappy with my stuff! And most of the time I am able to fix it, or at least offer some kind of alternative or compensation.
frazzled_niya
Dec. 1st, 2008 06:43 am (UTC)
*Nods*...XD it's all about customer service, but obvisouly there are those times where the customers becomes very...unreasonable ~_~;...But I'm glad that at least some people do contact you with problems if there are any.
sepp
Dec. 1st, 2008 12:30 pm (UTC)
if it makes you feel better, I'm in love with my tail and my ears ;_; <3
bladespark
Dec. 1st, 2008 12:30 pm (UTC)
Huzzah! :) I do love it when people enjoy what I've made.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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