We are not independent in the classical sense that we don't take money from any seller or agent. But there is only one possible scenario in which this would work: we'd have to take money from you, the visitor, to cover our costs. And we want to keep RepArchive free. If your voluntary contributions and support went through the roof, we could do that.
The way we reach a different form of independence is by having deals with all major agents. So instead of reaching independence by not dealing with anyone, we get it by dealing with everyone.
You can clearly see that, it's not like we push one agent and talk bad about the others, all agents get their share of content and reporting, and of criticism. We let all agents know that we will only work with them if they agree that we also talk about all the other agents.
RepArchive is independent from sellers, we only have front page listing deals with sellers, and they are all transparently flagged.
We try to distance ourselves from the sponsored reviews that are prominent in the taobao content creator scene.