Wired reports that Darkcoin is now accepted as a form of payment by some online drug dealers, alongside Bitcoin.
Nucleus and Diabolus are listed as two marketplaces where it can be used. In addition to drugs, one can also find other contraband like counterfeit euros. Most dark net-based marketplaces still have yet to accept it, however.
Darkcoin’s transactions are highly anonymous relative to those of Bitcoin, making it an ideal instrument for underground deals online.
Posted screenshots show advertisements marked with the Bitcoin, Litecoin and Darkcoin logos indicating their acceptance.
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Darkcoin’s creator Evan Duffield has downplayed the association between his currency and the underworld:
“Yes, it was accepted and implemented by these two markets. I can’t really control that. The goal has always been to make a currency that’s privacy-centric and is more for mass consumer base types of things. It’s not just for buying drugs online.”
Such has been the general response of the creators of technology that has become popularized by the underground economy. OpenBazaar creators say their ultimate intention is to create a better eBay, even though illicit transactions are inevitable. In contrast, one of the founders of Dark Wallet openly said he was looking to create a means for black market transaction and acknowledged that “liberty is a dangerous thing”.
Duffield points out that Bitcoin, in its early days, gained traction due to its use for gambling and online drug dealing through sites like Silk Road. This paved the way for eventual acceptance by major merchants like Dell and Overstock. So too, Darkcoin, whose use has been hitherto confined to services like private web hosting or VPN services to encrypt and anonymize internet traffic. What we see today is only the first step in what eventually become common “mainstream” use.