Silk Road forums

Discussion => Silk Road discussion => Topic started by: deadfuture on October 27, 2011, 11:00 pm

Title: Vendor Longevity
Post by: deadfuture on October 27, 2011, 11:00 pm
I'm just curious why most vendors on SR have only been a part of the community for a couple of months.  I've been following SR for a while now but never participated until recently and maybe some older members can chime in to enlighten me but it seems like most [reputable] vendors are here for a few months and then tend to fizzle for whatever reason (out of stock, got busted, w/e). 

I do understand that a majority of people are only into the dealing game for a certain amount of time (on a long enough timeline, the survival rate of every [dealer] drops to zero) but most of my IRL experiences seem to be that dealers are in the game for at least a couple of years not is the case on SR.

So I am just posing a general question.  Is SR such a gamble that vendors eventually quit due to legality?  Or maybe, not sure why, they just change their names to enhance anonymity, sacrificing their reputation for a fresh start. 
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: envious on October 27, 2011, 11:32 pm
Probably cause it's a lot of work for little to no profit.
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: deadfuture on October 28, 2011, 01:09 am
thanks for you response.  I suppose that is another answer but why do people enter distributing in real life, because they are getting good deals on something in bulk which provides them with more profit in selling smaller quantities.  So most dealers on SR, I'm assuming should be making a somewhat significant profit.  Just like the recent surge on moneypak to BTC.  Although the BTC bubble seems to have burst as of recent, people are still willing to pay 3.50 USD per BTC which can potentially be profitable for anyone willing to take the chance and has the capital.

Just seems to me vendors come and go...not sure why.  But thanks for your input envious, that is one part I didn't put into the equation...I just assumed everyone here made some profit because I know all vendors/dealers made an alright profit (myself included) when they did it.

EDIT: just to clarify I've never been a vendor on SR just IRL about a decade ago, in case anyone is wondering about profit margins for SR vendors and such.
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: anarcho47 on October 28, 2011, 01:58 am
I'm sure the vendor turnover rate on here is quite similar to the vendor turnover rate in the f2f blackmarket.  The biggest players remain and the lackeys come and go.

I know a few vendors here have gotten in legal trouble (unrelated to SR but takes them out of the game).  That's always a risk.

Before some of the buyer info was up scamming was fairly rampant and sellers were getting ripped off (also direct-BTC-transfer has mitigated this for established sellers who offer pretty significant discounts for opting for it), and I remember even a few of the bigger ones packing up shop as a result.

It's also very time-consuming when you start doing heavy volume.  Just driving to different postal outlets to keep from establishing "a pattern" if you packages ever get noticed can eat up several hours a week.  Not to mention packaging times, printing envelopes and labelling, etc.  Communication on here is pretty huge too.  And with so many new customers coming onto SR in a steady stream (or a massive gush a la Gawker et al), there are dozens of questions to be answered, disputes to be addressed, etc.

It's a lot of maintainence.

I will admit the margins standalone are definitely better for me, which is why I continue it.  But it pretty much balances out if I were to calculate a wage out of it, I may even "make less" from SR when approached from this direction.  I sell one pound of product f2f, takes me half an hour and I make three or four hundred.  On SR I have to answer many customer inquiries, put together 5-10 packages, ship them out, buy packaging supplies frequently, etc. etc.  I don't sell much small scale in the f2f world, not even to friends (My friends don't know I sell). 

I also keep it up because it's fulfilling to take a shit on the false concepts that the state tries to build - that drug trade is in and of itself (without prohibition being considered) a dirty, violent, etc. thing that is a huge detriment to society.  Every time I refresh the page and I see a new set of completed transactions a smile comes to my face.  That's x number of times more the state has been rendered impotent, useless.  That makes me happy.  I like to participate in things that make me happy.  You see how it works ;)

Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: deadfuture on October 28, 2011, 02:26 am
Thanks anarcho47, that actually brings to light a couple of things if not the overall question I had.  I may have to buy from you just from principle because i like the way you look at things :P

I guess keeping anonymous and transposing yourself to different shipping outlets can be time consuming but I still feel SR can be a profitable outlet for vendors.  Afterall when I was dealing most drops came at a mutual spots previously coordinated and was usually different every time.  So we would have to waste gas money to get there just as vendors would be driving to a different shipping drop box.

I suppose buyer scamming is always a risk as well as losing packages because that proves as a loss to the seller as well (no positive feedback as well as no income) so that may be another reason some vendors fade or disappear.

Sorry for all the rants.  I'm just trying to figure out why there isn't one (or maybe more) vendors who have a reputation as being the best for years now and the fallback guy. 
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: anarcho47 on October 28, 2011, 03:42 am
Also, SR has been around for a pretty short duration.  Even in internet terms.  I hope to be here as long as the site is here and there is money to be made.

I would welcome your business :)  My bud is always available.
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: jackstraw on October 28, 2011, 03:50 am
Anarcho is a GREAT VENDOR and a super cool dude too.   BC BUD YUM YUM. 
Fantastic communicator as well.
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: Rook on October 28, 2011, 04:08 am
Probably cause it's a lot of work for little to no profit.

Heh, bitcoin has been cruel to many of us.  Also, Anarcho is right in that its a pain in the ass when you're shipping 10+ packages/day all double vac-sealed and fingerprint free.  Answering WAY too many PMs everyday.. Definitely not something I plan on making a career out of.
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: anarcho47 on October 28, 2011, 04:34 am

And you are a damned good customer, sir.

Thought I'd toss this out there since deadfuture (is it really dead?  Nooo!  I have so much to look forward to!) mentioned doing some business.

I JUST got AAA HempStar in.  It's fucking killer.  Amazing.  If it was a woman I would... well, nevermind.

Anyway, I'm offering a free sample of it to anyone who takes advantage of my halloween sale from now until Nov 1.  My profile page is in my sig, details and product list are there.

Cheers!  To the (living) future :)
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: anarcho47 on October 28, 2011, 04:36 am
Rook, we slave to make our customers happy.  It's what capitalism is all about.  Our performance can even be measured!

Ups to you for being one of the solid sellers that keeps customers coming back (no matter who they are buying from).
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: georgejung on October 28, 2011, 07:10 am
honestly from a sellers point of view its a much bigger undertaking than i initially would have thought.  from everything i have read about people who get busted in this arena the largest liability is predictability.  Consequently, i dont do daily deliveries its too predictable you have to think of this from a LE perspective. 

with the dude over at OVDB i have read as much about his case as possible due to the similarities it has over here.

Basically he went wayy to far out there listing kilos of molly online which is obviously going to attract some attention.  I mean lets say one petty bitch gets busted with a gram of molly from this cat he doesnt even know all he does is cop a plea to cooperate in an operation to take down suggested vendor.

This buyer then goes on to purchase numerous packages over the course of a month.  these packages are then systematically intercepted every time narrowing the geographical area their perpetrator could be existing in.  Then once then once LE narrowed it down significantly make a series of rapid purchases and observe the post offices and or drop boxes in question.  Let it be known the post workers do specify which drop box the packs were picked up in based on zip code.  At this point they would have narrowed their search down significantly and it would only be a matter of time for them to examine habit or bank statements or internet usage or any number of things till a search warrant could be procured and a door kicked in.

This in mind its not a good idea to both sell IRL and online due to the increased chances and increased charges and liability instigated by doing both at the same time.
Moral of my story from my opinion online sales is and should be a very large commitment.  You cannot half ass this and get away for very long. It only took them 4 months of surveillance for LE to get this guy but he was a dumb ass and he had way to much emphasis on online security and not enough on real life.   

All in all i love this place and ill be dammed if i cant perfect it any and all way shapes and forms but better safe than sorry and the greatest risk is not taking one

Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: deadfuture on October 28, 2011, 01:07 pm
I will definitely try you for my next purchase anarcho although I'm not sure I'll make it before your sale ends since I 'should' be getting some gifts soon in the mail :)

As for what gj is saying, it really doesn't seem to ever be a good idea to deal in really large quantities through the mail, just way too much liability (attracting attention, potential loss of a significant amount of product, etc.)  I'm not too familiar with the case that you're referring to though.  Did that happen recently?  Is there anything we can learn from that to help keep us safer?
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: buzzerbee on October 28, 2011, 03:55 pm
When prices dropped from 7$ to 4$, it drove a number of vendors into the red who were not hedging their funds.  I know of several that packed up because they just lost too much.  How long can a vendor sit on their coins praying that the price will go back up so they at least break even.  There are a lot of older vendors still around though.  I think a number of vendors come and go because like in the real world, there are businesses that make it and those that don't. 
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: DigitalAlch on October 29, 2011, 05:52 am
Got really sick, lost a lot of money due to btc flux.
But I love you all so I'm back. Got goodies on the way.

Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: Rook on October 29, 2011, 08:20 am
Back at you, Anarcho.  You remind me of the best part of this job, forging the future of an unshackled society. Let it be known that we will not be subjected to prejudices of some constipated control freaks.

Great to have you back, DigitalAlch.  Your wisdom was missed around here.
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: anarcho47 on October 29, 2011, 01:31 pm
Good to see you back, Alch.  When are you throwing up another batch of tincture?
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: DigitalAlch on October 29, 2011, 08:32 pm
@Anarcho - Tonight. Last two bottle I have. Then I must find a new source for workable material.  And I would like to add, that I have missed your discussion on the moral and ethical implications of our work; though I rarely add my opinion (as more often than not I find you have eloquently all ready added what I would say). It'd good to be around like minded people.

@Rook - It's good to be back. I've missed your incredible medicine (esp. that Techno honeybud ;) )

Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: anarcho47 on October 29, 2011, 08:56 pm
Alch - maybe we can work out some kind of a deal for workable product.  If you're talking about "subscribing" I can get you some sweet prices.  Especially given your status on here an up from you would be a big help.  If you want to check something out and can give me some specifics for what you are looking for, flip me a PM over on SR and I'll see what I can do.

I'm sure I'll have plenty to keep on saying along those lines lol.  Not exactly the most meek of the bunch.  Especially considering I'm Canadian lol.
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: vanilla on October 29, 2011, 09:03 pm
SR hasn't been around long enough to judge the longevity of vendors overall but when the BTC crashed after the mtgox hack several long time vendors packed up shop. Personally, I plan on riding this train til the wheels fall off. I don't deal f2f and I really like the idea of SR. It gives us a chance to do what we do with a feeling of anonymity and safety as long as we are careful. I also appreciate the community aspect of it. I feel like it is me and a group of really smart friends against the man and we are winning.
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: KingJoey on October 31, 2011, 02:23 am
ive noticed this also hope something changes
Title: Re: Vendor Longevity
Post by: bash on November 01, 2011, 05:30 am
I am a member here since earlyish days and I sold on here for some time, then stopped for a (necessary) break.  When I wasn't looking, the ****ing btc value went down like a lead zeppelin, from ~$10 to ~$2 or something like that.  Kinda bummed me out, and (irrationally) put me off starting up again.
It's so much hassle buying btc to purchase the cool stuff here on SR that instead I started trading drugs for btc - I wasn't in it for the money.

I think Silk Road has great strength as a trading community,  as well as an unregulated capitalist market...

Anyway, could one possible reason for some vendors leaving be (perceived?) bitcoin instability?

P.S.  bash will be back, I'm not gone for good ;)