A new study claims that having sites like Silk Road, where customers can buy illegal drugs online, could curb drug-related bloodshed in the streets.
According to the report by University of Lausanne criminologist David Decary-Hetu and University of Manchester law professor Judith Aldridge:
"This new breed of drug dealer is… likely to be relatively free from the violence typically associated with traditional drug markets."
"Whereas violence [in the traditional drug trade] was commonly used to gain market share, protect turfs and resolve conflicts , the virtual location and anonymity that the cryptomarket provides reduces or eliminates the need -- or even the ability -- to resort to violence."
So, in short, buying illegal drugs online limits the physical transactions that people pre-Silk Road customers had to resort to. As the paper describes, "In the drugs cryptomarket era, having good customer service and writing skills…may be more important than muscles and face-to-face connections."
[via Wired UK]