Truthful Paedophiles On The Darknet?

There is credibility flaw in Cryptopolitik and the Darknet by Daniel Moore & Thomas Rid that I overlooked yesterday (The Dark Web, “Kissing Cousins,” and Pornography) Perhaps it was just too obvious to attract attention.

Moore and Rid write:

The pornographic content was perhaps the most distressing. Websites dedicated to providing links to videos purporting to depict rape, bestiality and paedophilia were abundant. One such post at a supposedly nonaffiliated content-sharing website offered a link to a video of ‘a 12 year old girl … getting raped at school by 4 boys’.52 Other examples include a service that sold online video access to the vendor’s own family members:

My two stepsisters … will be pleased to show you their little secrets. Well, they are rather forced to show them, but at least that’s what they are used to.53

Several communities geared towards discussing and sharing illegitimate fetishes were readily available, and appeared to be active. Under the shroud of anonymity, various users appeared to seek vindication of their desires, providing words of support and comfort for one another in solidarity against what was seen as society’s unjust discrimination against non-mainstream sexual practices. Users exchanged experiences and preferences, and even traded content. One notable example from a website called Pedo List included a commenter freely stating that he would ‘Trade child porn. Have pics of my daughter.’54 There appears to be no fear of retribution or prosecution in these illicit communities, and as such users apparently feel comfortable enough to share personal stories about their otherwise stifled tendencies. (page 23)

Despite their description of hidden services as dens of iniquity and crime, those who use them are suddenly paragons of truthfulness, at least when it suits the authors purpose?

Doesn’t crediting the content of the Darknet as truthful, as opposed to being wishful, fantasy, or even police officers posing to investigate (some would say entrap) others, strain the imagination?

Some of the content is no doubt truthful but policy arguments need to be based on facts, not a collection of self-justifying opinions from like minded individuals.

A quick search on the string (without quotes):

police officers posing as children sex rings

Returns 9.7 million “hits.

How many of those police officers appeared in the postings collected by Moore & Rid it isn’t possible to say.

But in science, there is this thing called the burden of proof. That is simply asserting a conclusion, even citing equally non-evidence based conclusions, isn’t sufficient to prove a claim.

Moore & Rid had the burden to prove that the Darknet is a wicked place that poses all sorts of dangers and hazards.

As I pointed out yesterday, The Dark Web, “Kissing Cousins,” and Pornography, their “proof” is non-replicable conclusions about a small part of the Darkweb.

Earlier today I realized their conclusions depend upon a truthful criminal element using the Darkweb.

What do you think about the presumption that criminals are truthful?

Sounds doubtful to me!

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