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In a significant update for Etsy sellers, the platform has officially confirmed that using AI in the creation of products does not disqualify them from being considered handmade. This announcement came directly from Josh Silverman, the CEO of Etsy. He emphasised that while some aspects of AI usage might still require monitoring, AI-assisted creations are welcome on the platform.

People working with AI

The Official Statement from Josh Silverman

Josh Silverman shared this perspective at a recent Axios event in New York City, as quoted by Value Added Resource and He explained that there had been internal discussions about whether AI-generated products truly belong on Etsy. Ultimately, they concluded that AI-assisted designs should be seen as handmade. Silverman likened the situation to electronic dance music, where using a synthesiser is still considered creating music even if the musician isn’t playing traditional instruments.

AI as a Creative Tool

Silverman’s argument highlights AI as a tool that assists the creative process, much like any other artistic medium. He stated, “We think that AI-assisted designs, much in the same way, are assisting the creative process and should be considered handmade enough to sell within the Etsy platform.”

The Future of AI in Art and Design

Etsy’s CEO believes that the collaboration between humans and machines in generating art represents a new frontier. He anticipates that AI-assisted design will be the next big trend, not only on Etsy but across the creative industry. This sentiment is echoed by other e-commerce giants like Walmart and Shopify, who are also exploring AI-driven solutions to improve user experiences.

Potential Challenges and Concerns

While the acceptance of AI in handmade products is groundbreaking, it does come with its challenges. There are concerns about ensuring that AI-generated designs do not diminish the authenticity and effort traditionally associated with handmade items. This raises questions about how Etsy will manage and monitor these AI-assisted creations to maintain quality and originality.

The Importance of Accurate Listings

Despite the approval of AI-assisted designs, Etsy sellers must still adhere to specific listing rules. For instance, when selling print-on-demand items, it is a requirement to list the production partner correctly. This ensures that even AI-generated products comply with Etsy’s handmade policies. Additionally, mockups must accurately represent the final product to avoid misleading customers.


Etsy’s explicit endorsement of AI-assisted designs marks a significant shift in the platform’s approach to handmade items. By recognising AI as a valuable tool in the creative process, Etsy is opening new avenues for artists and designers. However, it remains essential for sellers to follow listing guidelines meticulously to ensure their products meet Etsy’s standards. This development not only redefines what it means to be handmade but also sets the stage for the future of art and design in the digital age.

Etsy now allows AI-assisted designs to be considered handmade, as confirmed by CEO Josh Silverman. AI is seen as a creative tool, expanding artistic possibilities on the platform.

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