questionsanyone else notice the vacuum in the shirt.woot…

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j5 j5

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@gatzby: Why forego the "change blanks" thing? That is the main problem! I didn't mind the price hike, but the Anvil blanks are crap. There is nothing else you can do to bring me back as a customer. At this point, I'm not even willing to pay the random price for a crappy Anvil anymore. Why is woot choosing to ignore the main issue? Seems to me like they want shirt.woot to be known for lousy quality blanks and printing, because that is the new norm. Sad!

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@gatzby: I was also really into the Woot Plus / Side Sale reprints until those were also switched to Anvil. I understand that you are concerned about the community, not the shirt blank, but the decline in the community is directly related to the decline in the quality of the shirts. Bring back the quality, and I believe the community will come back, as well.

I used to enjoy telling people about shirt.woot when complimented on a shirt. Now, when I'm complimented on a shirt, I tell them about what shirt.woot used to be, but warn them to not buy anything, because the quality is lousy, now.

Do the decision makers ever see, or even care about the perception of shirt.woot these days?

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@no1: Part of the problem there is the "artsy" staff is just two people, and they're responsible for making sure designs go up, working with artists/contracts, planning other sales, and occasionally creating art themselves. They work hard, yo.

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@wisenekt: That's a bit of what I'm getting at -- people want to keep discussing what's happened in the past, not so much where they would like things to go. (In whatever ideal world that may be, blanks or otherwise.)

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@josephus: You had every reason to be skeptical:
Anvil ML dryer dried vs. Anvil ML line dried vs AA ML dryer dried

@lalian: Agreed. While I can't comment about the wear yet, I do have another comparison pic:
Anvil ML line dried vs. AA ML line dried vs AA new

As for the other rant (the neckhole), here is that comparison:
AA ML vs. Anvil (Nicaragua) ML vs. Anvil (Honduras) ML

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The anger + frustration infecting shirt.woot is tiring, especially as I like to keep a neutral stance on most issues regarding other people's taste in both art and shirt blanks. I was disappointed in the no more made in the USA issue and I thought the whole price change/blank change situation could have been handled better but it was always going to be explosive.

While I did enjoy some of the philosophical questions + the discussions, many of them seemed to be presenting hoops for people to jump through and argue in predicted ways.

For the positive suggestions @gatzby requested, @neuropsychosocial's suggestions about blog content are a good start. Maybe a behind the scenes tour of quality control. Or have a contest for the cleverest (faked) misprint. Or regular photo posts. Content people can comment + complain about ; )

I like the new derby system. I think the guest editors are just not being announced with the derby theme anymore. Apelad was the one for last week.

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I'd like to help do artist interviews if that happens. That might bring back some interest, but I have to admit, what people are saying about the way the shirt changes were handled is true. I hate to say it but the whole affair is a debacle up and down. I want it to not have caused the loss of community members, I want it to have not to have affected participation numbers, I want it to not have been so mishandled. But it's time for me to face facts, what happened earlier this past year was bad from top to bottom.

I really like the guest editor selection and would love to be a participant myself, and I like that Slydon is trying to help rebuild the community with poignant and interesting questions. However, these are great bandages where entire splints or bionic limb replacement is needed. I know though that it's hardly Gatz's department to change shirt suppliers back or to a better quality, and I appreciate him joining the discussion.

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@gatzby: You say you want to discuss the future but you don't want to talk about changes that would make people happy (blanks or otherwise). The point is the Shirt.Woot product is not desirable anymore so there is no reason to hang around in that community. You keep refer to people talking about the past, but what in the future is there to talk about and discuss? Would you perfer to see chats about how Shirt.Woot could possibly get worse by moving to single-ply toilet paper t-shirt blanks? (While this is an extreme example, I hope that you get my point.) Perhaps the old adage is at play, "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all".

Right now, there is not much nice things that can be said since the message has been pretty clear that the new blanks are staying and there is no clear path forward for correcting the shirt printing errors.

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@gatzby:

"Part of the problem there is the "artsy" staff is just two people, and they're responsible for making sure designs go up, working with artists/contracts, planning other sales, and occasionally creating art themselves. They work hard, yo."

Time to hire more staff, fill some jobs and get the economy moving, yo. (All I am hearing is negatives, perhaps the question is, "What will the Amazon overlords allow?" so at least every idea that is brought up is not immediately shot down. Seriously, if you are looking for business advice, at least lay out the facts.)

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@gatzby: Interesting thread. I was put off by the new blanks when I read that the shirts now fit like a tent. That is not a very good image to have for a piece of clothing being bought without being able to try it on first. Then there were several nifty designs that I really liked and I almost made a purchase, but that was around the time ppl started to post trouble with QC.

I would be willing to give shirt.woot a try with the new blanks and, hopefully, improved printing if they offered something like a satisfaction guarantee. There are probably others who have been scared off by what they have read in the Forums and this might be a way to draw some back. I do not want to give up on shirt.woot and the artists who keep at it week after week.

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@gatzby: have a bunch of woot members submit shirt designs. Assign each a number and pick out of a hat once a week/month and do that design no matter how good/bad it is. Sit back and watch the "debate". At the end of the year do a vote on best/worst and give the winners free shipping for a year. Or like $50 free woot money. Or the biggest BOC ever.
It would also make it fun for the woot staff member to have to write a review on a horrible design.

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@gatzby: Everybody here understands that the poor quality blanks aren't your decision. Still, they're definitely someone's decision. When you tell that person that the Anvil blanks are terrible and that the community universally hates them, especially at a higher price than the better quality AA blanks, they must have SOME response to that, surely. Is it...

a). "People will learn to like them somehow."
b). "Who cares, eventually we'll have other customers."
c). "If the designs are good enough nobody will care that they're uncomfortable & fall apart."
d). sticks fingers in ears "LA LA LA LA I'M NOT LISTENING!"
e). Other: ____________ (fill in the blank)

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@starblind

I think a possilbe answer is e) "we signed a contract, and as a result, not only are we going to have to use these shirt blanks, we cannot comment on any possibility that we might quit using them in the future- not only would that violate our contract, it would kill sales (people would wait for the new blanks), prolonging the agony."

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@kophia: That's an interesting thing to me as well, and something I have to be aware of -- I am easily swayed by someone else's review of a shirt (or a sleeping bag, or pants, etc) on the internet, when, heck, what do I know about their body type?

I run into this problem with shoes a lot -- I have giant feet. Most people exist in the 9-11, Medium width range... so their reviews are basically not at all helpful to me, in terms of sizing.

--

I like the idea of a "random shirt" thing.

Artist interviews sounds like a fun idea. We used to do "Ten Questions with..." and I wonder if that's something that can be revived.

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@gatzby: Your problem is that the real issues are continually ignored. You cannot erase the past. It happened, and that is the problem. If you want a real discussion and bring back the community, you have to quit ignoring the issues. If you can't solve the problems, involve the problem solvers. If nobody at woot is interested in solving the problems, then I believe the community at shirt.woot will continue to dwindle.

Quality product = quality participation

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Intriguing that most of the comments are about shirt.woot rather than woot as a whole. Is that a reflection that there is more interest in shirt than in the rest, that shirt has the biggest problems, that the shirt problems seem easiest to address, or that the shirt community is larger and more vocal than the rest of the woot community?*

*or even that the deals community is more populated by disgruntled shirters?

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@josephus: They could cut the price of the Anvils and sell them all at random prices. Include them in BOCs making sure there is crap in every BOC. Do an Anvil Woot Plus sale at a reduced price (ie. $10). Hold a blank tshirt sale like they did for the AA shirts. Donate them to a local low income school or to a disaster relief organization for a nice tax credit. With a little PR, woot could come out looking awesome in the deal.

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@josephus: I targeted the question for shirt.woot as that is the place I frequent(ed) and noticed the "echoing halls". @Gatzby didn't really address if the other major sites experienced similar exodus, but alluded to community flux between the main sites and social media channels, so there may or may not be an issue there.

j5 j5
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@j5, @Josephus: Right, we were discussing the shirt.woot community. I didn't want to sidetrack it or dilute the issue by expanding to encompass the entire community.

Which, incidentally, is something we debate the scope on internally a lot. The community of wooters is pretty broad, and we like to think the water cooler conservations are included... but those are notoriously hard to see from the office. =)

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@gatzby: @kophia: I am easily swayed by someone else's review of a shirt (or a sleeping bag, or pants, etc) on the internet

Don't feel bad, that's a psychological phenomenon where perceived value is influenced by the opinion of others and not by objective data. It's what drives online reviews.

j5 j5
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For me personally, when I first discovered shirt.woot I went on a "shirt binge": I now have a stack of folded woot shirts 3 feet high. So I guess my desire for shirts just got saturated, and so I started taking less interest.

I lurked in the comments for a long time, mostly to watch the heated discussions that would develop on every ramyb design: watching AdderXYU do battle with her fans every week!

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@josephus: I've felt that the shirt.woot customers are much more dedicated and certainly garnered much more repeat business (to the tune of hundreds) than the other divisions, hence greater participation in the community.

@trekmiss: It was the double-whammy of a price increase and the blank quality decrease that did it in for some folks; even then, just dropping the price won't bring all the buyers back ... nor would going back to USA made.

@j5: I've tried to be much more objective in my complaints, hence I never made a comment about the feel of the Anvil vs. AA and focused more on the cut/sizing.

@gluonconcerto: Ramy is a guy, actually.

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i gotta question:
are you guys (and gals) who schlepped over from Shirt browsing the any of the Deals? have you purchased or clicked through any Deals? or are you just talking about Shirts on a different subsite? (which is fine, btw. i'm just curious.)

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@pemberducky: I look for deals occasionally, not every day, but at least weekly. I generally don't buy stuff, but that's because things I looking for are usually several months old if I find them here.

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@pemberducky: I do, though this is not my #1 go-to deals site, TBH.
True deals here don't seem to bubble up as well as curated deals at other places, and in some cases are often missing altogether. Also, have you seen @narfcake's rep? :)

j5 j5
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@pemberducky: I definitely click through and buy from time to time here.

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@pemberducky: I think I once bought sharpies from amazon based on a deal posted here, but that's it. I occasionally browse through the first page of deals when I'm procrastinating on something else. I've only clicked through on a deals link when it's something entertaining, like the $60,000 pirate ship playground that was posted during the pirate woot-off. For me, DW has essentially replaced the time that I used to spend reading/posting on SW.

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@pemberducky: I came to deals to see what it was all about after I began to lose interest in shirt.woot. It wasn't till after I was here awhile that I realized that shirt's problems were being discussed here. I will say that there is a little more freedom to discuss the problem here, since the censorship got pretty heavy handed on shirt.woot. I try to stay active on both the discussion and deals side of deals.woot. I'm not here just to whine about shirts.

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After reading @trekmiss' comment, I wanted to clarify my own: I did not come to DW to talk about shirt.woot: I discovered DW one night when I wanted to offer a comment on the item being offered on sellout; those comments were then posted on DW. As the conversation on shirt.woot had died down, I was looking for another online community in which to participate, and DW seemed like a nice place. (I was right! It's awesome.)

I'm quite certain that I've never complained about the new blanks, actually.

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@pemberducky: I actually didn't turn to deals as an alternative to shirt.woot!, I was trying to spend less time on Twitter and I'd been curious about deals for awhile. I add deals when I can but people have usually beaten me to it. I think the deals community is a good resource to know about -- and a fun one.

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@gatzby: The blanks is the primary issue for me. I still like some of the shirts, but as they no longer fit I will no longer buy them.

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@norredm: That's fair. I've fallen victim to the neck stretch issue myself.