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nshumate
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Conflict of interest?
« on: 04/05/03 at 09:26:12 »
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Marty,

What do your employer at CafePress think about cpshops?  Do they support you unofficially, or do they consider cpshops to be stepping in on the functionality they're trying to promote with Premium Shops?

Nathan
http://www.fusiontees.com
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Marty
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Re: Conflict of interest?
« Reply #1 on: 04/05/03 at 11:29:29 »
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Hey, that's a funny question.

The way I like to put it is I'm walking the fine line between impropriety and conflict of interest, but hey, take it as you will.

Here's the lowdown:

I'd been doing cpshop for 9 months before I started working at CafePress, and they knew that going in.  CafePress isn't the big goliath corporate entity that you might expect it to be -- it's just a killer company, made up of great people.  

When they hired me, it was with the understanding that cpshop was something I did on the side, and as long as it doesn't directly interfere with anything CP does at work, it's not a problem.

Now, there's an interesting synergy between my CafePress work, and my cpshop work.

If something changes at CafePress -- case in point, the elimination of HTML in basic shop store descriptions -- I don't factor cpshop into the equation when working on it.  I do, however, have first-hand knowledge of when things will break, and that gives me a leg up on fixing them.  If there's a problem, more often than not, I created it.

You see, cpshop is somewhat of a protected entity at CafePress.  At work we all respect each other's personal projects, and try to help them as much as possible.  (For example, Heather volunteers her time for Bad Rap, a dog rescue organization, and we'll often feature their store in various ways.)  So when something happens that might endanger cpshop's existance -- read: discontinuation of custom stores -- I know that cpshop will be made allowances for.  They're not looking to ruin my little side project.  Every decision is made for a reason, and malice never factors in.

The basic stance is this: as long as cpshop does things that CafePress doesn't, then cpshop will be around.  And considering the large number of things that cpshop does, it's probably going to be around for a while.

Now, I don't profess that cpshop will never go away.  I imagine eventually I'll implement enough changes at CafePress that cpshop will finally become obsoleted.  But by that point, the CafePress stores will be so amazingly fantastically wonderful that cpshop just won't be able to compare, and no one would buy it anyway.

Eventually probably won't be for a while, of course.  cpshop was one year old on March 21, and is still going strong.  (I've got some major changes I'm going to be making in the next few weeks, as will the CafeShops site.)

Anyway, I hope that answers your question, as well as several others you'd wanted to ask but didn't feel like typing.
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