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Darknetmarkets listing Count Is Booming: Approaching 50,000!

There are more than 3 times more listings today on the Various Darknetmarkets than there were in October 2013 one the only 3 markets that existed – SR1, BMR, Sheep (along with some small, mostly scam sites), according to investigative report by the Digital Citizens Alliance.

Most of the reports focuses on comparing silk road 1 and silk road 2 while describing the changes along the way, but the part we found to be the most interesting in this report is the table comparing the number of DNM listing nowadays to the number of listing that existed in the Silk Road 1 Era, summarized in this table  that is far from being complete, at this date we count around 35 active marketplaces, and that’s after removing  few markets as “quality control” measures, so the numbers shown in this table – including only 11 marketplaces (one being down over a week now), and yet, the numbers showing over 41,000 listing in the markets (we estimate something like 50,000 including the other markets and the I2P markets):

dnm1

We can see the huge increase since the Silk Road 1 era, summarized in this (more accurate table:
dnm2

In the explanation below this table its being said – this excludes at least other 25 markets and some vendor shops who are established (exists over ~2 months):

  • The current state of the Darknet drug economy, despite the turmoil, is not all that different six months after the arrest of DPR if one looks strictly at the numbers (these numbers are as of January 29, 2014):
  • The current number of total drug listings is 176% of pre-TSR take down levels. This growth has come with increased competition, as there are now five marketplaces that have more listings than Sheep Marketplace did at the time of the original Silk Road seizure.
  • Silk Road 2.0 is the market leader with a 43% market share. TSR had 71% at the time of its seizure. 23
  • Silk Road 2.0 currently contains 105% of the drug listings that TSR had listed at the time of its seizure.
  • Agora currently carries 26% of drug listings and has seen major growth in listings, as well as credibility, since the hacks of Silk Road 2.0 and Pandora. Agora further differentiates itself from Silk Road 2.0, Pandora, and BlueSky by offering weapons.
  • Pandora Marketplace, thanks in large part to the Tormarket shutdown, occupied the number two slot for several months, but has since been overtaken by Agora. Pandora currently represents 19% of drug listings among major marketplaces.
  • There are several newer markets looking to get in on the action. These sites pop up quickly and usually fade away or are quickly identified as scammers, but some become viable option for those seeking drugs online. The markets listed above are worth keeping an eye on in the months to come.42

So its not being very accurate.

Data Aside and the bottom line is that the outcome of shutting down the silk road – was a massive growth booster and development for the DNM scene,  providing endless advertising services to the drug markets across the traditional media. And this research shows it clearly, Thank You, focus the next one on harm reduction.

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6 comments

  1. I think White Rabbit needs to be removed as an active market. See http://www.reddit.com/r/DarkNetMarkets/comments/1ylbt7/why_is_whiterabbit_in_side_bar/ and look at the site forums or site announcements for more evidence it’s moribund.

  2. what about ponzi6mmydrrsnw7.onion (Warning Suspected Scam) at https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=590962.0 ???

  3. x-post from /r/darknetmarkets

    Inspired by a thread at /r/bitcoin titled:
    “Silk Road 2.0 Now Larger Than Silk Road Ever Was” (techdirt.com)

    Link to OP: reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/24xmrr/silk_road_20_now_larger_than_silk_road_ever_was/

    Sigh. I absolutely love deepdotweb. His intentions and reasons for reporting on the markets are solid, ethical and personal. I admire that greatly in the unforgiving and thankless “beat” you chose to cover. Dedicating a career to report about this particular underground world is not easy stuff. This underground only survives (an occasionally thrives) on a culture based first and foremost on an infrastructure that’s unverifiable players, clouded supposition and absolute anonymity. The cliche about “pulling teeth” comes to mind. This makes your job insanely challenging (though I should note that recently it seems that a once tight lipped vending credo is morphing into a circus of greedy attention whores that make DPR1’s initial OPSEC blunders seem far less egregious than we thought).

    I am sure that Griswald at least can thrive on the big checks and fame. But as far as DDW, he is a reporter’s reporter, a source of data that is relied upon as trusted by the world’s largest media outlets. Most importantly though, IMO, he is a friend and ally for sure. His deeply rooted, harm reduction motivations are unknown by too many people who don’t look past the surface, but this quality makes him a friend to all camps at the table.

    His message is not being replicated by any other outlets because they are all either too commercial, or too preachy. It is simply not a great business model to be anything EXCEPT either a banner-farm or an abstinence program. DDW will exist until DDW decides to pull the plug. He is and always will be sans competition.

    Having said that, the numbers he presents for this story are flawed in may ways. Trying to compare for instance the size of SR1 vs SR2 involves a metric nobody can measure (well – perhaps the NSA can but I hope not). These all important metrics are not factored into the hypothesis DDW presented, therefore the hypothesis is null.

    Further, the amount of duplication in the aggregate totals as presented for the DNM’s is likely astronomic and perhaps even exponential.

    Those aggregates, IMO, are overstated due to this duplication by as much as 600%, though likely much more.

    See, without knowing the total handle (gross) of every market, no reliable assumptions can be derived. To be clear, I define duplication as all inclusive of vendors having duplicate listings on the same market, vendors vending at different markets (necessary cut+paste duplication), retired vendors, exit scam vendors, fraudulent vendor impersonation accounts across the markets, and dead vending accounts and abandoned listings everywhere.

    WRT the numbers comparing SR1 vs SR2, those are even less reliable in making an assumption that 2 is bigger than 1.

    On SR2, there are perhaps thousands of non=producing listing from scammers, retired vendors, abandoned accounts, zero price and quantity, etc. These thousands of listings are part of the graphical totals. However, the original SR listings were much, much cleaner as Vendor accounts were maintained by competent staff at the time. I would bet that at any given rolling time, less than 2% of the original SR1 listings were dead ends. However, the percentile of “bad” listings at SR2 is likely well in excess of 30%.

    But, DDW, for all those points of contention diminishing the validity of your analysis, it seems like you have looked right past the Wooly Mamuth in the room. It almost seems like you chose the path of least resistance and fully embraced the journalism flaw that is results oriented thinking. I am completely certain that you realized that your lack of ANY kind of data like “check averages”, total number of completed transactions, turnover, and gross revenue left really nothing to validate this as sound journalism.

    BUT – I will concede that Ed Bradley’s work with 60 Minutes was really VERY entertaining, albeit fluff when held aside even the shittiest Mike Wallace piece. The thing is though that third segment pieces were pretty easy to identify as entertainment. That seems to be lacking in your story due to the absence of a disclaimer or qualifying statement.

    So, my well intended friend -If there are 10,000 listings for a $1 joints on SR2 and there was 1 listing for $10, 001.00 on old SR1 then which market would your model declare “bigger” or “surpassed”?

    If your answered honestly and said that, in this example I present, your methodology is beyond vulnerable. Continuing with this example, if you had 100% confidence in the sales/volume figures I chose, I suspect you would agree that SR1 had never been surpassed and was indeed larger.

    But, here is the best part – WE STILL WOULD NOT KNOW!

    If the $10,001 single item were only ordered once a year on average but SR2 sold 10,002 joints during a fiscal year then SR2 would indeed have surpassed the original. However, most rational thinking absolutely points to SR2 being a fraction of the business as SR1. The oft cited statements from the FBI point to a $1,000,000,000.00+ enterprise in effectively 2 years worth of business days. I’m not sure that SR2 would see that many zeros over the course of a decade (especially with the saturation and dilution caused by the explosion of new markets).

    I had a girlfriend that had a massive eBay store! Huge! She listed 15,000 items simultaneously. The year before she died (apparently of misery and stress), she lost $8,500 on less than $22,000 total revenue. But her store sure looked pretty and was well stocked.

    In the end, due to the very nature of DNM’s, that nobody will ever know the scale of the infrastructure because NO SINGLE PERSON is privy to enough data points to make a reliable comparison to determine any substantive conclusions. Your chart was fun, though.

    However, lets agree that the worth is based purely in entertainment value. Any journalist assumptions based on this junk criteria used as input for the analysis yields purely fictional, sillywilly stuff that’s just for funsies and chit-chat at the water cooler. Right? I can’t tell you how much us old folk enjoyed and discussed Ed Bradley’s interview with Johnny Carson! We could not stop speculating that with all his money and purportedly a huge cock that he must have had decadent orgies in Malibu!

    I think you realize that I have only scratched the tip of the iceberg with the specific flaws I mentioned. There are many other points of contention that could be imagined. But I think this is enough, and I also think nobody is even reading this any more because it was way too fucking long.

    DDW – I actually would have believed you more if you told me you currently had a pig flying over your head. I take your word as credible. As far fetched as the soaring sow is, I think the probability of it being fact exceeds the probability of these charts having and basis of reality. 8=/

    As a man, I do love what you stand for though. Just not a fan of this article. Lots of us have been behind you from the first day your masthead flew. We will stand proudly by your side and always will applaud your work and bow down to your motivations! Altruism in Journalism is indeed rare.

    If i have misread your article and-or missed you stating all the above – well – never mind then.

    • Thanks :)

      **** Correction: It was NOT Inspired by a thread at /r/bitcoin titled:
      “Silk Road 2.0 Now Larger Than Silk Road Ever Was” (techdirt.com) – it was posted before that thread, AND the techdirt article :)

      And the comment you pasted was already answered long time ago here :
      http://www.reddit.com/r/DarkNetMarkets/comments/24ywu5/apparently_silk_road_20_now_larger_than_silk_road/chckh7p

      “I actually did take all these things into account – duplication, dead listings, scammers, etc…

      But ignored them – Why you ask? because the question being asked is what is the total weighted amount of market size in listing count (only) – not the neto amount of unique verified listings of each market – Both for SR1 (also there including duplication,scammers etc…) and 2 – and no analysis of the type of listings.

      As we know in all markets (not only DNM) – same pepsi being sold in different stores by the same pepsi company still counts at the total market size of pepsi, that’s the idea.

      Hope that explains it :)”

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