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Silk Road 2.0 Now Larger Than Silk Road Ever Was

from the strike-down-one-arm-and... dept

This is hardly surprising, but it appears that in the wake of the feds taking down the "dark marketplace" Silk Road and arresting its alleged creator Russ Ulbricht, replacement marketplaces quickly sprung into place to try to take its place. This was exactly as we predicted. A few of the markets have come and gone (usually associated with scandals), but it appears that the one that has stuck around is "Silk Road 2.0" -- and it's actually now larger than Silk Road ever was, in terms of the amount of products being offered. The article linked above, from Coindesk, notes that, somewhat ironically, the reason why Silk Road 2.0 seems to be standing out above the others is because it's worked hard to establish trust.

This effect was likely boosted by sensible policies at Silk Road. Most significantly, soon after February’s hack, the site’s operators announced that they would pay back bitcoins lost by customers.

Silk Road’s moderator Defcon said at the time: “We are committed to getting everyone repaid even if it takes a year.”

In anonymous drugs marketplaces, as in any market, confidence is key, it seems.

That's not to say Silk Road 2.0 is going to stick around -- there are plenty of reasons to think it won't. But, in some ways, you wonder if this is a kind of Napster moment all over again. After the original got shut down, a series of replacements all came about vying to take its place, leading to some interesting innovations -- even if those who wanted to shut down the original decried how awful and illegal each new version was.

Filed Under: decentralized, marketplaces, silk road, silk road 2.0


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  1. identicon
    Darknet-User, 27 Aug 2014 @ 2:12pm

    Re:

    You have made several incorrect assumptions.

    Markets today are built so that you don't need to trust the vendor to complete a successful transaction. The worst thing that could happen is if the mediator (usually the marketplace admins/moderators) works together with a vendor (or vice-versa, the buyer) to snatch escrow funds. But this scheme wouldn't last long, and the market would lose all its reputation if they do so. It's wouldn't be worth it.

    With marketplaces such as http://alpaca7bcqv2rnu3.onion where all transactions are carried out with multiple signatures, your funds are safe in escrow until you receive what you ordered and that you are fully satisfied with the product.

    Also, I'd rather pay 110 USD for a gram of (tested) ~95% pure cocaine, than 140 USD for a gram of standard (unknown) 20-40% pure cocaine from your local untrusted street dealer.

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