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Bitcoin is a cipher—literally and figuratively. The crypto-currency conjures a William Gibson–esque scenery of dim web Tor servers, masked total cavorting in Eastern European shipping containers, multibillion dollar South American cartel-laundering operations, skinny college sophomores picking adult Silk Road engineer drugs during magnanimous arts–school mailboxes, and so forth. It’s also an indicator of libertarian Silicon Valley utopianism where everybody pins their temperament to a blockchain, eschewing a globalist banking Nanny State and spending a rest of their lives blissfully personification video games on a seasteader cluster in general waters.
All this geopolitical amour and philosophical gesticulation omits a fact that, in 2016, Bitcoin is a genuine banking used by normal people. Following final night’s part of Black Market: Dispatches looking during Bitcoin-driven commerce on a dim web, we’ve interviewed 6 of those users, many of whom have asked for their identities be kept anonymous. They use bitcoin for shopping drugs, offered sex, escaped genome-investigation regulations, exploiting supermarket-account hacks, gambling in Las Vegas, and more. Here are some examples of a form of things people use Bitcoin to compensate for.
Drugs (and Tesco vouchers)
I’ve been shopping Bitcoin for 4 years and have used it on a