With the exceptions of alcohol and caffeine I don’t take drugs. It’s not that I’m opposed to taking drugs I just choose not to. I believe many drugs have beneficial properties (violence would probably plummet if people would just take to smoking cannabis) and am therefore a fan of online “black” markets like Silk Road (link only works if you’re using the Tor Browser Bundle). Silk Road is an interesting site because it was the first large online drug market. The operator(s) of that site are smart and have remained anonymous. They have also chosen not to advertise the site, instead relying on word of mouth. That being the case, many people believed that Atlantis, a competing online “black” market, would crush Silk Road because of its major advertising push. It appears that the operators of Atlantis weren’t as smart as they thought they were because they shut down the site for “security reasons”:
Atlantis Market, the online bazaar for illegal drugs, has suddenly shut down permanently due to “security reasons outside our control.” The site gained some notoriety after the circulation of an animated commercial that explained how a “stoner” named Charlie uses Atlantis to find “dank buds,” part of a broader advertising push aimed at chipping away market share from the reigning drug underground kingpin, Silk Road.
When it comes to “black” markets, it pays to keep a fairly low profile. Most major advertisers won’t accept Bitcoin, which means there is no truly anonymous way to pay for their services. Anybody buying advertisements from traditional outlets therefore put their privacy at risk. Assuming Atlantis wasn’t a government sting operation (which is quite possible) it’s likely the people operating the site had their identities revealed through ties to their bank accounts.
Meanwhile Silk Road is likely to continue running for some time since the operator(s) refuse to even communicate outside of his/their website forum. If you’re going to run an agorist business that specializes in verboten substances keep a low profile.