Suggestion: RW members only trading post


Rather than dealing with Swappa or Ebay, it would be great if we could buy/sell used phones and related items among ourselves through this site. RW really wouldn’t have to get involved, so it shouldn’t increase the workload for staff. I’m in the process of buying a phone from another member, but wouldn’t have known it was available if she hadn’t sent me a PM. I’ll soon want to sell a good Moto E2. It would be nice to keep things “in the family” instead of having to deal with whomever.


Hi @larc919!

I like the idea and I have thought about it before. However, I don’t believe a trading-post could be feasibly done due to legal issues (among other challenges). Should something happen and someone get scammed, Republic should not be held responsible. However, since the transaction would have occurred on a Republic website, Republic could be held responsible for damages. I am no legal mind, but I think it would be inherently risky for Republic to establish a trading-post. All that being said, I like the idea, but there will always be those who will exploit something like this and ruin it for everyone involved.



Hi @larc919,

Republic Wireless did evaluate this idea in the past, and made the decision that buying and selling should take place on a site that is already established for the purpose.

We do love the “In the family” mentality, though!

Edited to add: @larc919 - Please let me know if a like-new case for that E2 would help sweeten the deal. We have some like-new, customer returned Otterbox Commuter cases for that model in White, Lavender, and Black, and would be glad to send your buyer one if you introduce him/her here in Community.


I like this too and believe a thread dedicated to this could overcome the legal issues if it is merely a place where forum members can invite one another to communicate privately regarding the purchase of a phone.

One Rule:

Post must simply state: "Contact me privately regarding the purchase of my (model) by clicking on my handle.

@southpaw how about revisiting this now that member-member communication is working.


Hi @billg, I believe the decision was firm and final.


While this sounds like a fine idea in theory; one does need to consider what happens when a deal goes south and despite the best of intentions from the overwhelming majority of this Community’s participants, that will happen. Who takes responsibility for that and settles any transactional disputes?

Folks use (and put up with the overhead) of e-commerce sites like eBay and Swappa precisely because there are significant protections for both buyer and seller. There are other options such as classified ads, Craigslist and OfferUp (a newish app based service somewhat similar to Craiglist). For an extreme example of what might go wrong see this: For anyone using these face to face alternatives, please see if your local police department participates in this program or something similar:

I’m afraid were Republic to host something that resulted in a relatively benign transactional dispute or something much worse; someone somewhere (an enterprising attorney for example) would work very hard to hold Republic accountable. It wouldn’t matter how many rules existed or disclaimers were issued.


One must also remember that one is entitled to all the justice they can afford. A case such as you describe would cost more to bring than it could possibly yield even if brought in small claims court. In the small claims case only needs to move the small claim to district court and it is over. Sigh, we tend to worry too much about legal matters.


Sadly, one cannot ignore the reality of the world we live in.


My wife was an attorney (rest her soul) and from her I learned enough about matters like this to know when I see much ado about nothing.


So, e-commerce sites like eBay and Swappa as well as payment services like Paypal have complex dispute resolution policies for no reason whatsoever, I suppose. :slightly_smiling_face:


I was one of the ones who liked the idea of a buy/sell/trade section when the discussion was had however long ago. After doing business on Swappa, I don’t think I’d buy or sell without a transaction intermediary again (outside of the odd garage sale or buying something from a person that I knew locally).


Those parties handle the transaction. In the instant case, RW would be completely divorced from the transaction. The only parties involved would be the buyer, the seller and the parties that handle the monetary exchange and shipping.


So, when (not if) one of those transactions go south, who settles the dispute?


also who takes the bad PR (It be Republic)


I think highly of Swappa and would buy or sell there rather than eBay or locally as my first choice. Theoretically, I like the idea of buy/swap/trade among Republic members, however, what sounds good in theory often turns out not to be in reality.


My grandfather was a tailor and my father repaired radios. Things change over time. There are plenty of attorneys today that would be happy to take suits against the company that simply introduced the parties. The suit may even be eventually thrown out, but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t cost Republic a great deal to make that happen. You can just Google and see the number of times Craig’s List was named as a defendant in suits over printers, dates, wedding dresses, and just about everything you can imagine.


Back in the old Community a fellow broke the rules and mentioned having A Moto X (2nd Gen) for sale. I managed to contact him privately before his post was deleted. I sent him the money by PayPal, he mailed me the phone. Yes, there was some trust involved on my part but considering the relatively small amount of money it was well worth the risk. I have a lot of faith in people doing the right thing.


That’s fine. I did a bunch of buying and selling on eBay back when it was a matter of sending a check and trusting the buyer to send the merchandise. It usually, but not always, worked out well. In any matter, it’s not for any of us to decide. We aren’t the owners of this sandbox. You could always start your own sandbox for buying/selling/trading Republic Wireless phones, but since the new phones are unlocked and can be used practically anywhere, I’m not sure that it’s going to catch on.


Fantastic that it worked out for you. But one example is not really something to build a business on. I’ve sold thousands of items on eBay. I would say that somewhere in the neighborhood of 5% of the transactions run in to an issue, and that’s as the seller! It’s worse as a buyer.


Nobody is building a business here. How many times has RW been sued because one of us (or one of them) put someone to a lot of unnecessary troubleshooting effort? Sigh. I’ll bet they have never been sued for selling a phone that was defective out of the box.