"If you're not paying for the product, you are the product." Have you ever heard that nugget of wisdom? It comes from the era of social media, where we've all gotten used to having these amazing communication tools available to us for no cost at all. The big platforms brought in investors based on the promise of future riches, concentrating first on building their user base – then turning those users into a source of ad views.

We don't begrudge the social media giants a bit of income. It costs money to hire staff and run all those servers. The outsize profits have become a bit much, though, not to mention the privacy and harassment issues. And perhaps most important, the products aren't as good as they used to be.

This is a roundabout way of saying, yet again, that we have a love-hate, on-again-off-again relationship with Instagram and its cohort. Which is why you see us appear and disappear there. But we're so happy we do appear occasionally, because we love to connect with you and glean valuable intel, like the survey we ran on free shipping. You can find that roundup below — and please add your point of view on the debate.

Speaking of ways to connect, our next Show & Tell is coming up next week. We're discussing trying out a different date and time for Show & Tell in the New Year, so if this time slot is an issue for you, let us know what would work better. Hope to see you on Thursday the 10th!

Yours in making,

Co-founders Corinna vanGerwen and Kat Tancock

A Canada Post truck driving down a street in Vancouver

Should You Offer Free Shipping?

Shoppers want it and platforms want it, but free shipping isn’t actually free — it comes with a cost to the seller. Here are some things to consider for your own online store. Plus, let us know what you think.

This content is for members only

Sign up now to join our community of Canadian maker businesses and receive our email newsletter packed with all you need to help your business thrive.

See plans Already have an account? Log in