Better Bang for the Buck? Generalizing Trust in Online Drug Markets

Rasmus Munksgaard, Jason A Ferris, Adam Winstock, Larissa J Maier, Monica J Barratt

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Past research into illicit online markets suggests that trust is produced by governance, reputation systems and the formation of social ties. In this paper, we draw on accounts of abstract and institutional trust, examining whether using a market is associated with general positive beliefs about product quality. Using data from the 2018 Global Drug Survey (n = 25,471) we utilize propensity score matching and multilevel linear regression to examine the association between having purchased drugs online and general expectations about product quality in value, weight, purity and price. We find strong evidence of a positive association between general beliefs and individual experience. This suggests that trust in illicit online markets can extend beyond interpersonal relations and towards an abstract market.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe British Journal of Criminology
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 2022

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