The Dark Net: Exploring The Internet’S Hidden Side
The internet can be a great source of information and entertainment, but it’s also home to some darker corners – those that reflect humanity’s darker impulses.
On the Dark Net, we can see these darker sides becoming reality in a way that’s largely invisible to us when browsing the more visible parts of the internet.
Take, for example, cyberbullying: people leaving nasty comments designed purely to insult or anger others.
Or consider how even young teenagers have been found visiting websites that contain potentially harmful material.
And there’s even evidence suggesting some of our own neighbors could well be on their way to becoming porn stars.
Clearly then, understanding how dark and malicious aspects of the internet can shape our lives is at least as essential as using it positively.
And this is why taking a trip into the depths of the Dark Net – with your flashlight in hand!
– is something every one of us should do more often.
The Dangers Of Trolling: How Anonymous Online Abuse Has Spiraled Out Of Control
The internet can be a double-edged sword.
On one hand, it provides a huge platform for the free expression of ideas and opinions.
On the other, it’s also been known to enable anonymous threats to those in the public eye.
This is especially true when it comes to controversial topics, and even more so if someone is making a stand against something that others disagree with.
Take Caroline Criado-Perez, a feminist journalist who was targeted by thousands of anti-feminist Twitter messages during her 2013 campaign aimed at featuring Jane Austen on the new ten-pound note in England.
The threats ranged from general insults to even violent and threatening language, and some of them led to arrests when found out who posted them.
This type of activity has its own name: trolling.
It describes the act of creating intentionally offensive or off-topic comments via online platforms with an intention to provoke strong reactions from users who encounter them.
And as we’ve seen from 2009 statistics, this form of malicious behavior is only getting worse – 498 convictions have risen all the way up to 1,423 in seven years!
It’s not always about serious threats either – Zach for example (who was interviewed by the author) joined right-wing websites just so he can post insulting messages which were intended solely for his own entertainment – sending images of his penis included!
When it comes down to it, trolling is an insidious game that takes advantage of the openness offered by modern day communication tools such as social media networks and chat services – leading people like Criado-Perez into hiding while placing fear on other well known figures who will challenge certain views or opinions.
The Internet: A Breeding Ground For Extreme Ideologies
The internet has become a safe haven for political extremists and lone terrorists who are looking to share their unsavory ideologies.
Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube have become prime real estate for right-wing extremist groups like the British National Party.
Neo-nazi users can easily be identified by usernames that contain the numbers 14 and 88 which stand for their “14 Words” mantra and “Heil Hitler” respectively.
These posting outlets have allowed them to feel comfortable with voicing opinions that would otherwise not be accepted in mainstream culture.
Not only do these platforms provide a platform for radical ideologies, but also give dangerous lone terrorists access to incite violence.
A perfect example of this was seen in 2011 when Anders Behring Breivik brutally killed 69 people at a Norwegian Labour party gathering on Utøya island; having been radicalised online through reading various blogs regarding the threat of white culture being taken over.
His 1,516 page manifesto 2083: A European Declaration of Independence is still circulated today among his supporters.
The Dangers Of Illegal Pornography: How Taboo Content Can Lead To A Downward Spiral
It’s easy to find yourself on content that isn’t suitable for people of all ages when it comes to legal pornography.
That’s what the Lucy Faithfull Foundation discovered when they looked into the issue in 2013: nine out of ten adults who ended up on dark net websites were there unintentionally.
But the concern is that it can stimulate or even encourage illegal sexual activities.
This was seen with Michael, a pseudonym used by a man who was arrested for viewing illegal porn after starting with seemingly more permissible sites.
The appeal seemed to come from the youth of those depicted, as well as the clearly forbidden nature of what he had stumbled upon.
Professor Richard Wortley from London’s Crime Science Institute explains this phenomenon further by saying that this kind of entertainment can lead to an increased desire for young adults and then even for children too.
It’s clear that legal pornography can quickly lead users down a path to off-limits content – one where activities and impulses which are against the law become more attractive over time – and should be avoided for that reason.
The Rise Of Controversial Online Communities Dedicated To Self-Harm And Eating Disorders
The internet is home to many controversial communities that focus on anorexia and suicide.
One of the earliest such online support groups was founded in 1991 by a California man named Andrew Beals – it was called alt.suicide.holiday, and was dedicated to supporting those looking to take their own lives during the holidays.
At the same point in time, pro-anorexia or pro-ana websites emerged, presenting anorexia as a lifestyle choice rather than a life-threatening illness.
Dr Emma Bond of the University of Suffolk conducted research on pro-ana sites in 2012 and discovered 400 to 500 official websites and blogs devoted to the topic, with thousands of smaller blogs linking back to them.
A European Union study conducted in 2012 even found that around 10% of teens between 13 – 17 had visited a pro-ana website at least once.
Unfortunately, these websites have had real consequences for many people; just take Amelia, who joined a pro-ana site when she was only 13 years old – after three years, her physical and mental health deteriorated so much that she could barely walk anymore, and eventually needed hospitalization to start her recovery.
How The Internet Structures Drug Deals In The Digital Age
The internet has become a go-to spot for drug dealers looking to use its hidden and anonymous features to conduct their illicit business away from the prying eyes of law enforcement.
Take Silk Road, for example: it provided sellers a highly professional service with user reviews, contact details, product categories – all in addition to providing heightened security.
Unlike traditional websites, Silk Road was only accessible through special Tor browsers where users could anonymize their identity and all communications were encrypted and deleted once read.
What’s more, everything on the site was paid for using the digital currency Bitcoin – this made transactions incredibly difficult to trace back even by police.
In fact, by July 2013 150,000 customers had done business through this online black market.
The FBI eventually were able to track down the operators of Silk Road leading to several arrests and shutting it down at least temporarily.
But not long after one of those arrests Silk Road 2.0 was already running – providing buyers with a fast and secure way to purchase drugs on the internet where they are sure their Identity remains safe and secure!
A Modern Porn Star Might Not Look Much Different Than The Person Sitting Next To You On The Train
Thanks to webcams, anyone can become a pornstar these days.
Amateur porn is now wildly popular because viewers enjoy seeing everyday people they can relate to.
Professional porn was once dominated by strict body-type standards, but with webcam streaming that’s no longer the case.
Take Chaturbate as an example; it’s one of the biggest amateur porn sites with over 600 cam models broadcasting shows throughout the day.
These ‘camgirls’ and ‘camboys’ make money by collecting tips from their viewers in exchange for content.
The site helps facilitate these transactions by selling tokens, with 60 percent going to themastars.
Cam models come in all shapes, sizes and styles – you can find couples having casual sex, naked men playing guitars, bored women just staring off into space, or men simply pleasuring themselves.
It offers a world of diversity which has made it immensely successful; according to a 2013 New York Times article, it’s grown into a billion-dollar industry taking away 20 percent of professional pornography’s market share!
How Bitcoin Enabled Meek Outcasts To Gain Financial Power And Inclusively Inherit The World
Alternative digital currencies are not governed by any government, and this is what makes them so groundbreaking.
The development of these decentralized cryptocurrencies began in 2008 when an anonymous cypherpunk known as Satoshi released the first functional currency to use a system called blockchain.
Through this blockchain system, each piece of the data string is made up of ten minutes worth of transactions, ordered chronologically and ending with a hashtag.
All computers involved in exchanging Bitcoins are constantly testing to make sure that duplication hasn’t occurred, making it an extremely secure digital currency.
Any exchange made using Bitcoins is recorded in the blockchain, making it completely independent from any central control system.
This allows users to anonymously transfer money without worrying about banks or governments having access to their information.
The Dark Net is an eye-opening book that reveals the dark and dangerous depths of the internet—something that most people don’t even realize exists.
It’s a cautionary tale of the bad and the ugly, from drug dealers to anorexic teens using anonymity for their own benefit.
But at its core, it also offers readers motivating and inspiring insight on how to use their technological know-how to do some good in the world.
Ultimately, this book suggests that being able to penetrate and navigate the darknet can provide someone incredible power.
From preventing terrorist attacks to exposing fraudulent bankers, those with coding knowledge have an opportunity to make a real difference on both sides of the digital curtain.
So, if you’re looking to make change happen, start by learning computer code – it may just be your most powerful weapon yet!