Will Dream Market’s Fentanyl Ban Save Lives?

Dream market recently issued a ban on fentanyl sales and surprised many users in the process. The decision to ban fentanyl came somewhat unexpectedly. All Dream updates have taken place quietly, but many feel that banning fentanyl goes against the very nature of the Dream administration. The list of banned products has looked the same for several years. And although the decision to ban fentanyl likely emerged from a harm-reduction discussion, some users have expressed concern about a potentially harmful outcome of a ban on the sensationalized opioid.

Marketplace staff quietly introduced the ban halfway through the month of May. Not long after the introduction, Reddit users on the one remaining darknet-related subreddit debated the pros and cons of the decision. One Reddit user reminded everyone that Hansa market also banned fentanyl not even a week before Dutch law enforcement revealed that it had been running Hansa for nearly one month. While the true debates had nothing to do with Hansa, the Reddit user successfully stirred emotions.

Dream, like the majority of current darknet markets, had already forbid the sale of weapons, explosives, child abuse material, and snuff/gore/murder films. Most markets have played by similar standards. And very few have objected to those conditions. But, some users argued on Reddit that banning fentanyl will do more harm than good. The majority of the fentanyl-related overdoses covered by DeepDotWeb have involved counterfeit pharmaceuticals pressing fentanyl. To be clear, the reporting of overdoses has primarily not been from fentanyl sold or marketed as fentanyl. One user wrote, “you realize that it’s still going to pretty much be in whatever opioid you’re looking to buy, right? The only difference I can see this making is that you won’t be able to specifically buy fent.”

What prevents vendors from selling the fake oxycodone laced with fentanyl or fentanyl analogs?

Another camp agreed with the ban. One user pointed out that “fent is the #1 priority for most Law Enforcement agencies…” Will banning fentanyl help prevent law enforcement from targeting the largest darknet market?