Conceptually mapping my journey down The Silk Road


You know what really helps narrow down ideas? An imaginary mind map. There are so many ways we can approach this topic:

  • Behind the Scenes – I think it’s really interesting that the people involved with the black marketplace use liberalisation and democratic discourse (“FREEDOM!”) to justify their operations. But of course, the community is not even sure who or how many people started it let alone them being available for a quick chat.
  • Media Hype – how the media have ironically resulted in the site having more users. I guess they kind of act like a indirect marketing/PR tool for the site.
  • Anonymity – The ways in which people are being sneaky about it always fascinates me. But then there are also limits it it since Tor crashed and the AFP says that they can track importers. Also, d. boyd’s (2008) notion of “security through obscurity” could be an interesting way of thinking about Silk Road anonymity too.

There are more but I’ve run out of the word limit for this post… Where is my eureka moment?

danah boyd (2008) ‘Facebook’s Privacy Trainwreck Exposure, Invasion, and Social Convergence’. Convergence, vol 14(1) pp. 13–20

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