Hello, my name is Audrey and I'm addicted to Etsy.
What started out as mindless browsing (you know, once a day, just to see what the latest and greatest was) quickly turned into a full-blown addiction (feeling a small rush every time I would click on the "pounce" button unsure of what treasures were soon to be served up to me).
It's pretty amazing, really but for better or worse, with a little bit of effort, commitment, and investment, Etsy makes it possible for anyone and everyone to become an entrepreneur. It takes the pressure off of starting your own business (be it brick and mortar or online) and lays it out in easy to follow steps. It creates a community with forums, blogs, and helpful articles. It uses "success stories" to plays to that part in all of us that wants to leave our 9-5 in the hopes of being able to live off of our hobbies. Etsy is the new lemonade stand for adults and boy is it fun.
In this online age, I'm finding that the sites that enable and empower individuals are the ones that I'm most drawn to. There's Etsy, Blurb, Google Analytics, Vimeo...lots of places that break down the barriers of the old school, making once specialty services more accessible, and enabling each of us to explore our inner-entrepreneur/our inner creative/ourselves. Access is at the root of empowerment, and great ideas can come from a public that is empowered. (Ok, there are a fair amount of bad ones too.)