Bartering Makes a Comeback in Bismarck of All Places


In my search for barter and trade related news I stumbled on this article from the Bismarck Tribune about a group of people that used to get together in the park to swap whatever they had for the stuff that they wanted, back in the ’60s and ’70s. Now they are using Facebook as the medium of contacting each other.

It’s highly interesting to me to note how barter really is becoming mainstream, but not like I had always imagined it. I used to think that barter and trade exchanges were going to become as mainstream as banks and credit unions. Instead, in our cashless economy, people are just finding each other and doing business without currency.

I still have yet to find a good example of a barter company, besides internet startups, that is taking full advantage of what is going on right now in the economy. Will that exchange be yours?

So I wasn’t completely shocked to stumble upon the Bismarck Bartering Network on Facebook. Constant readers will recall that Facebook is the world I live in now.The BBN, as it were, harkens back to at least the 1970s and, before that, the pre-industrial agrarian lifestyle.The system is simple: Make or do something. Trade it for other things that you need or want. No money changes hands.The variety of goods and services is impressive for such a fledgling endeavor. Need legal help? Need a massage? Need legal help after a massage? It’s all there.

Bartering makes comeback

And what is it going to take to make sure that your exchange wins? If bartering is as easy as finding someone who has what you want right now, how are you going to attract long term customers? Have answers? Let me know…

If you don’t, I have some for you.


  1. What are some of your answers? I for one think places that use faux currency are missing the point.. this is not barter! How is this any different than selling your items / services? I’ll tell you how, you can’t buy groceries / pay the rent with your newly acquired points, and if you can’t find anything you want with your points before the site goes under, you just got nothing in return for your items / services.. not a very successful barter. Imagine if only a very very small subset of our country accepted the USD, and there was no guarantee that the USD would hold value 6 months from now.. how eager would people be to work jobs, sell their homes, etc in exchange for the USD?


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