Spotted elsewhere: How dark web marketplaces work


A blog post about the dynamics of dark web marketplaces, authored by Joel Montenegro whom, I understand, is an investor at a venture capital firm



Posted on Twitter by Maha Shaikh (@Open_Sourcing), whom you should definitely follow if you are interested on matters of open sourcing, open innovation, and communities of practice.



So what?

It is not every day you get to read an insider’s view on how marketplaces work in the dark web because, let’s face it, people who trade on drugs, stolen personal information and the like are not that forthcoming about their methods! So, this post is a worthwhile read in, and of, itself. But this is particularly good because the author then outlines the key lessons learned from his research for other (legitimate!) marketplaces. These are:

  • The importance of brand and reputation
  • The role of social proof as a mechanism to signal ‘good’ reputation
  • The role of influencers in conveying information about the product and the seller
  • How the existence of opportunities for adding value or cutting cost lead to the emergence of new players and business models
  • That consumers often have very creative solutions to apparently insurmountable problems
  • That you do not need customer data to succeed


And as a bonus, the comments are great, too.



What caught your eye on the web, this week?


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