Fake resellers

It’s just been drawn to our attention that there’s a Russian site [link removed] purporting to be an official reseller, which is already offering preorders. We’re sending a takedown notice (although I’m not sure how much traction that will get).

If you see a site offering preorders or claiming to be an official reseller at the moment, it’s a fake. Please don’t send them your money. Initially, this site will be the only place you can buy a Raspberry Pi, and we are not offering preorders.

If any Russian readers would like to spread the word on social networking sites, we’d be very grateful! We’d hate to see people lose their money to a scammer.

Edit, Nov 9: The site in question has taken down its online store.

99 comments

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I see they’ll be selling the Alpha board, with the prototype software lineup of “Ubuntu, Iceweasel, KOffice, Python, etc.”. I fear that nearer to the release, more realistic con sites will appear.

Yet some will try to buy through convincing looking scams. I dunno – how do you protect people from themselves?

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I don’t know. It’s especially difficult when there’s such an enormous language barrier. I asked a friendly Russian on Twitter to mail habrahabr (the big Russian tech site who’ve been sending a lot of visitors our way) about it, and he’s also composed a tweet in Russian that I’ve been able to send out into the void on our behalf, but realistically, there’s a very limited amount of stuff we can do to counter really applied unpleasantness like this.

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The problem is that in wikipedia http://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raspberry_Pi – russian page have link to fake raspberrypi site – i think you will write to wikipedia moderators about it.

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Hi fsmoke – I notice you have a Russian email address. Would you mind removing that link from Russian Wikipedia and adding a note on the talk page? (I can’t do it – the fact that I work for Raspberry Pi means that I fall under NPOV rules. And, of course, I don’t speak Russian…)

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Done :)

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I don’t think they are scammers, they are geeks with a commercial talent.

In Russia most of ppl are not able to order goods from USA/Canada/Europe, because they don’t have сс or afraid of using it. So resellers service is very popular. Like http://amperka.ru/ for example.

And I saw several times link on habr to this russian site.

Your information is spreading, so soon everything will be clear ;-)

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Well, Geeks perhaps, commercial talent I’m not so sure about. If they had that, they would have asked to use the trade mark and logo first, at which point they would have found out that there are no bulk order until well in to next year.

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They’re probably actually scammers, because they got a bunch of their facts about the Raspi wrong. Not only that, but I checked the Wikipedia article history and random IPs kept adding that same fake link a few times, without any explanation why.

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I’d like to correct myself on this after reading through the other comments, but I’d also like to say the site’s creator should take better care in the future as there were some signs that usually indicate something’s a scam.

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There is no any form or other ways to send money to this site.
Probably they are waiting for official start. Then they will buy your boards using preorder information and sell them (using our national currency) to the part of our IT community wich is too lazy to register in paypal or whatever system you are going to use.

I dont see any scum here, but it is just a theory.

Sorry for my english. Greetings from Russia! xD

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We’ll be using PayPal, credit cards *and* offline payments, so hopefully everybody who wants to should be able to buy one. Greetings right back at you from Raspberry Towers!

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If so, they will have to make a bulk order.
But I think that is not possible, since the purchase is limited to some units by person.
But, this is just an assumption.

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please, dont think that all Russians like this. sometimes mine nation makes me sad :(

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It happens everywhere; we’ve had to issue takedown notices to people in the US, Spain and the UK too. It’s not to say that Americans, the Spanish, British or Russians are bad people – it’s just that a lot of *people* are bad people.

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Don’t worry about your country.
People everywhere in the world make mistakes.
I am still trying to correct a [link=http://tecmundo.com.br/tecnologia/14996-computador-de-us-25-tem-lancamento-programado-para-o-natal.htm]brazilian site[/link] that has written that if someone buy a R-Pi will win other as gift.
By now, they change the title from “Buy one, take two” to “Buy one, donate other”.
But the content of the post is still mistaken.

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[http://ru.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Raspberry_Pi&diff=prev&oldid=36978415 Here’s an edit] which included that fake site on the Russian Wikipedia.

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Here’s an edit which included that fake site on the Russian Wikipedia. (Wiki markup replaced!)

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btw, great news, it means that the raspberry will be a bestseller :)

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I noticed, searching Google+ pages (to see if you had any presence on there) that there’s a Czech site linked there. I’m not sure if this is another scam site.

https://plus.google.com/105919477052373124416/about

http://www.raspberypi.cz/

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No – the chap behind that got in touch with us a while back. It’s just a Czech language discussion site about the Raspberry Pi – nothing to worry about.

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I read that the people from that Czech site want to make a bulk order.
Are you going to accept such bulk orders?

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We haven’t decided yet. We know there are groups in a few countries getting together to place bulk orders if possible; but because our initial production run will only be 10k units, we may have to limit the number of orders by any one body.

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I am from Czech Republic and i can confirm that.
I quote from that website:

“V tuto chvíli je doména raspberrypicz držena Martinem Raindlem s podnikatelskými záměry.”
= This domain raspberrypicz is in hold by Martin Raindl with business intent in mind. (So he plans to resell raspberries, sell domain later or smth like that..)

“Organizujeme hromadnou objednávku do čech.”
= We organise bulk order to Czech republic.

“Po potvrzení jednotlivých objednávek všech účastníků vyzvu k platbě za desku a uskutečním hromadnou objednávku na mojí adresu. Po rozpočítání všech nákladů vyzvu k druhé a poslední platbě, po které ihned desky odešlu.”
= After confirmation from all interested persons i ask interested people to pay for the board and then do bulk order on my address. When boards come i will re-count the price and ask you for second payment. After that i will send you the board immediately.

In my opinion this is not scam, but u can never know.. There could be some problem with that double payment – you must pay two times to get your board – but that proves nothing.. But definitely this is not like that russian site – there are no preorders and he is just organising bulk order.

But there is no discussion in fact.. This is only about this bulk order so far.

(Sorry for my bad english ;) I am not that good in formal business english)

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Ah good, good. I just thought I’d double check since the discussion came up.

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Such situation is terrible. But what in case when some clones of Raspberry Pi will appear? It may be after launch, but these clones may be very odd. Just like PSP clones…

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It’ll be interesting to see what happens there. I’d be very surprised if anybody making a clone could undercut us on price, and the profit margin that we’re making is small so it’s not necessarily going to be attractive to people making knockoffs. We can stand the low margins ourselves, though, because we’re a charity. That said, one of the reasons we’re making this device is a desire to see the cost of owning a computer come right down, so we’d be very happy to see clones out there – as long as they’re not labelled Raspberry Pi!

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/me goes off to design Strawberry Tau

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I will create a mulberry gama :)

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Just to beat a dead horse, I will design a Blueberry Omicron

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I’m off to design the Apple Pie, oh! no I can’t oh well the Apricot Pie! damn thats been done too, oh well Tangerine Pie, drat Tangerine as well? OK Orange nope, pineapple err nope, Cherry? nope Blackberry eh! no no no, what about Banana no one can be possibly using banana and computer systems surely? http://www.bananacomputers.com/ bugger. What is it with all the fruit computer systems, I know I make it named after kernels, I’m of to make the Acorn Pie, damn damn and damn again, I will just use letters. So lets see now, what about QW? no not sexy enough, hmmnn what about AS? Nope sounds like a word. Errrr what about ZX? Yeh great, perfect I like that, now all I need is a number….

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I used to have a machine on a network at university where all the hosts were named after fruits of the dicotyledonous plants. There’s a whole world of non-commercial fruit available to you in that particular taxonomic subset. I recommend the serviceberry.

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Clones are fine until they are 1:1 copy. In case when they only looks-like original device – it’s odd. That’s way my example was PSP.

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I would say:
– Take the information only from the oficial site;
– Buy only from the oficial site.
http://www.raspberrypi.org

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By the way – I didn’t saw any pre-order sites with Rspberry Pi in Poland. I didn’t noticed anything what may be odd for Raspberry PI Foundation.

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What is the status of http://www.raspberrypi.com/ please?

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It’s kosher. That’s our own shop site (still very much a work in progress, and we may even change the eshop software we’re using before we launch, so it’s probably not worth your time signing up there yet). We’ll be linking to it from the front page when we’re ready to ship.

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Are you using open source eShop software or are you looking to buy some? I have a friend who wants me to setup a small shop for them but they don’t fancy spending any money at least until they have some coming in.

The stuff I have seen in my Cpanel account is ugly and sometimes a bit convoluted, would be interested in what you decide on.

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We’re using off-the-shelf software, I’m afraid; the open stuff didn’t really offer what we needed.

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I think it’s a good idea to put a link on raspberrypi.com to this site at this stage.

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Oh and on the eShop software topic, I have used magento and it seems to be pretty capable.

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Sorry for offtopic, but I saw Raspberry Pi Store You are testing at http://www.raspberrypi.com with Sign in form.
Should we create new accounts when You will be ready to ship or will You transfer WordPress accounts to this eshop?

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You’ll have to create a new account.

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It was discussed in a topic called Raspberry.COM:
http://www.raspberrypi.org/forum?mingleforumaction=viewtopic&t=875

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They’re here as well…
https://plus.google.com/116065823504136701926/posts/XRPsrtexgwU

This seems like another fake one:
http://raspberrypi.com/

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I submitted this article as a tip as well on omgubuntu.co.uk as they did an article about the Raspberry Pi some time ago (that’s how I got here, I believe :p).

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http://www.raspberrypi.com is genuine. It’s where we will be selling the devices from in December, and will be linked to from the front page here.

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Aha, ok. Good to know :)

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I see the Russian site has been noted on Slashdot.

Lots of tangential discussion…

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Oh, well…
The title of the post is Fake resellers, so it seems good to discuss other fake sites.

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Yup, that’s Slashdot. I *love* that you weren’t aware of them. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slashdot_effect :)

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How will you (the real Raspberry Pi store) ship units, say to Latin America?

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Initially we’ll be shipping from the UK, but we should have local distributors set up some time next year.

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I don’t see any scam… Guyz just made a FAN shop and they want to make bulk order and then resell… they priced model B at 39.99$ wich is what i expect to be when imported in bulk….
You shuld release some clarification about reselling, becose i think of such shop in my country too…

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Hi! I am the co-owner of the Raspberrypi.ru site. And I’m very disappointed on your reaction on our site, claiming us fraudsters and other bad words. The aim of our site is to help spreading Raspberry Pi in Russia, as it is really a good thing to learn programming embedded devices and so on. We haven’t accepted any money – the aim of preoders is just to see how many people in Russia want this board. Moreover if you look at the prices – they are the same 25$ and 35$ converted to Russian money. So RaspberryPi is also a kind of charity – i planned to put in my own money in order to make it cost the same as in Britain to stimulate the interest of russian young people on programming. Also many people in Russia have problems with Pay Pal as it doesn’t like our country, and russians under 18 can’t receive a credit card.
If you want, i remove the shop from our site.
Best regards

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Yes please – we would appreciate you removing the shop. We’re happy to talk to you later on, when we have a pipeline going, about becoming an official reseller; but right now we do not expect to be producing enough units in the short term to be able to fulfil the demand we expect you’ll be seeing, so you’ll be taking people’s money with nothing to give them in return.

We know that not everybody has access to a credit card, which is why we will be making sure that our own shop can accept offline payments and other payment methods like PayPal too.

Thanks for coming back to us about this.

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Why you don’t contact shop owners in the first place?

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Because it’s not as fun as yelling about russian scammers!

ps: joking ;)

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We did – we sent them a takedown notice before writing the post above.

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No, you didn’t. We haven’t received any messages from RASPI Foundation.

But we have received a number of comments like “Fuck you” from non-russian speaking users via contact form after this post. It was extremely pleasant to read them :(.

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Not to trample on any toes, but to say “preorders” tends to mean that you will be taking orders for stock before release. Perhaps it might have been wiser to use some other word or phrase things a little differently if all you wanted to do was gauge demand?

Also, it might have been sensible to email the Foundation to tell them what you were up to before setting a “raspberrypi.ru” domain up and getting people upset.

Good manners, eh?

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I couldn’t find the information that raspberrypi.ru is “official reseller”. Do you really think that is a fake?

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And please remove this sentence from the topic.

“We’d hate to see people lose their money to a scammer.” as it is not true as we haven’t accepted any money. And it is very unpleasant to read such things

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I personally sent out the “takedown” notices to the email addresses given in your “whois” domain listing, one of which (‘wewdddfdfg@mail.cqm’) bounced.
I also posted on your forum.

The phrase “Raspberry Pi” is trademarked, and the logo is copyright, with trademark applied for. Please ask before using.

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>>The phrase “Raspberry Pi” is trademarked, and the logo is copyright, with >>trademark applied for. Please ask before using.

Should we put this phrase to our site? Or should we remove your logo?

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Please send an email detailing your intended use to liz@raspberrypi.org
You should also remove suggestions that the device will be available for resale, at least until after we launch.

Thanks

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This brings up another issue. It would be a shame if bulk buyer(s) locks out the rest of us from getting our PI’s at a decent price. It reminds me of the concert scams that happen all the time in the US….

Can you consider a maximum buy limit at least for the 1st few weeks or so to give the rest of us a chance…

My apologies if I’m beating a dead horse….

Jay

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The horse is not dead; it’s just moribund. It’s an idea we’re considering very seriously for just the reason you state, at least at first.

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That’s Great!!!!

Thank you for trying hard to keep ahead of the scammers…

Jay

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Check your email, please

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You really shouldn’t link to the offending site (or at least add nofollow to the link). Google will give the Russian site credibility because it’s getting a back link from your official site.

Please send me a board for helping!! ;)

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Good point!

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What an interesting turn of events! You just spoiled Russia’s reputation in front of everyone :D
Hopefully this will not stop the russian guys from promoting Rapsberry Pi locally.

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You do realize by listing there actual website address here you will cause their Google ranking to shoot up, and more people to find the site and get scammed?

Thanks for pointing out it is a scam, but I suggest you remove the actual url.

– Brian

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Uh… where on their site do they show this? When I clicked on the shop part, they only linked back to the official website…

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Yeah – they’ve changed it now.

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[…] Raspberry Pi   TAGS: Raspberry […]

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So when will be able to buy the real thing? I have so many projects in mind and I think that i can cover every ones Christmas presents with a raspberry pi and some cool function :)

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Please read the multitude of posts and the FAQ for availability information.

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You should add a update to the original post announcing that the offending website has removed the shop page but to continue to be aware of potential scammers etc

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I am an EE engineer and converted to IP lawyer from Hong Kong. Do you have any plan to register Raspberry Pi as a trade mark in China and/or Hong Kong? If so, I am willing to donate my time and money for the registrations. The cost of such trade mark registrations is about USD 1000 each for China and Hong Kong registrations (2 trade marks – text and logo, multiple trade mark classes).

On the other hand, if you believe I should spend the USD 2000 and my time in other areas that can help promoting the good deeds of Raspberry Pi in China and Hong Kong, please let me know.

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The takedown notice works. It’s not always the case..

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Reselling is not allowed? Or is the fuss just about that company taking preorders?

I was thinking of reselling in my country because its normally hard/expensive to ship here, and most middle/low income families will not have great access to Internet or international credit cards.

Also government purchases require a local representative, so unless Raspi sets up shop here no school children would have access to it, at least not officially.

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Reselling will be allowed, but this company was taking preorders for devices it didn’t have and might not have been able to get. We won’t be organising reselling until some time next year when we have enough of a manufacturing pipeline going for us to meet demand. When we’re in a position to do that, we’ll be putting out a call for resellers on this website – so keep an eye on the main page.

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Gotcha, I’ll be looking out for this.

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Heh, I see the trial with raspberrypi.ru is successfully over. Just to make it clear I can witness that in Russia it’s a common practice – we prefer to buy such platforms from Russian community sites to avoid difficulties with shipping, customs and credit cards. And yes – the prices shown in raspberrypi.ru were almost equal to yours (25 and 35$) and they didn’t take money for pre-order. But, of course, the customers should be aware and careful with any kind of fraud. That’s why the owners of this Russian site should have contacted with you before they made any announcement of the pre-order. The copyrights are stricter in Europe than in Russia as yet, indeed. :)

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That is unfortunate, but it shows how much people want you to release this device soon!

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What do I do to becamo an official reseller in Brazil?

Thank you.

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Я думаю, что у нас в России надо подождать с покупкой сего девайса и купит что-нибудь у других производителей. А то вдруг эти ещё всех российских пользователей, купивших не у британцев, объявят пособниками мошенников и будут преследовать по британским законам.

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Dear Liz,
I tend to think you do not have an idea of a complexity of custom clearance in Russia and know nothing about traditional payment systems in Russia and it’s legal side.
Saying that “So you’ll be taking people’s money with nothing to give them in return” doesn’t have any grounds as guys are doing the right job offering a distribution of your device around 1/6 part of land area in the world 12 time zones FOR NO PROFIT.
You suggest Russian developers to buy your devices off-line. My question to you, would you buy something offline in Russia?? I presume, the answer is no. I hope your answer is no!
I do respect your start up and the device you manage to go market but you name company fraudulent instead of thanking them for money you can make on ex-USSR market.
I presume if all copiright issues are sorted with Russian web-site you are to give an official comminication on this.

Ребята, молодцы, что хватило смелости и ума. Просто британцам свойственно не доверять людям, а тем более, русским.

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The point is that the foundation was not asked if they could use the logo, had not been asked if they could supply in bulk, and the website was asking for money for a product which they had no way of knowing they could actually buy.

In all likelihood, they would NOT have been able to buy in the quantities required to service the number of people who may give them money. These people would then to wait for the second or third batch of devices to be made – some months delay. Had these people even asked the foundation, they would have known this.

The foundation has no issues with people reselling the boards, or buying in bulk to reduce costs, but please get in contact first, and get your facts right. Bulk buying will not be available for the first batch at least.

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I am sure they understand your points. More over for me as for Russian speaker the web site looks good and do not confusing me thinking they sell their own device. It is very transparent that guys just re-sell it.
But I agree that ideally they could ask your approval for usnig your logo (though it is not registered in the country).
I hope you sort the things soon.

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>>and the website was asking for money

The website WAS not asking for money. I’ve written it a lot of times. And many people in this topic confirmed it. Don’t mislead people by this awful slander. And don’t delete this post.

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Why would I delete this post?

And thank you for the clarification.

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>>Why would I delete this post?

my reply to your post disappeared and i’ve decided that someone deleted it. May be it was just my browser or wordpress bug.

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