Ned Beauman surveys the online recreational drug marketplace, which is largely made up of experimental chemical compounds. The drugs, “still legal or quasi-legal because no legislative body can possibly keep up with an enterprising chemist,” are usually sold under various names – bath salts, plant food, pool cleaner:
These websites don’t just have shopping carts and checkouts: they also have user reviews, product alerts, seasonal sales and multiple worldwide delivery options. (“Really great product these pellets are. compared to the “o5” pellets, and the 6apb powder ive had from numerous sources, these absolutely blew me away. 2 pellets made for an amazing reaction, the 5apb adds SO much to the mix. Also, top notch customer support and service, as usual. Shipped same day. rc-lab is always a pleasure to do business with.”)
But Beauman fears that online clearing houses have a major problem:
Methoxetamine, methiopropamine, ethylphenidate, etizolam, benzofuran, camfetamine, pentedrone—who can keep up? The merchants can give you the best customer service in the world, but the one thing they can’t do is explain the effect of these drugs and how much you might want to swallow, because, remember, they’re only selling plant food. Could it be that, just when it seemed like the internet was robbing the drug world of all its dangerous glamor, the problem’s actually just been flipped upside down? In the old days, you knew what you wanted but didn’t know where to get it. In 2013, you can get almost anything but have no idea what it is.
Earlier Dish on synthetic drugs here.