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Drugs Unlimited: The Web Revolution That's Changing How the World Gets High

4.14  ·  Rating Details ·  124 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
The very first thing ever bought or sold on the Internet was marijuana, when Stanford and MIT students used ARPANET to cut a deal in the early '70s. Today, you can order any conceivable pill or powder with the click of a mouse. In Drugs Unlimited, Mike Power tells the tale of drugs in the Internet Age, in which users have outmaneuvered law enforcement, breached internation ...more
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published October 14th 2014 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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Amar Pai
Feb 05, 2015 Amar Pai rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an informative book. If you have any interest in drugs--culturally, personally, economically, or pharmacologically--you should read it.

* bath salts - turns out these are not actually bath salts. it's just a fig leaf that generally stands for substituted cathinones. but there's no regulation so sometimes it's other variants of designer drugs

* designer drugs - man. MAN. this book really opened my eyes to how many designer drugs are out there now and why. basically, it was the perfect sto
Nov 29, 2016 Gwern rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Journalistic history of the development of "designer drugs"/"research chemicals", with focus on past two decades and Internet-based RC communities. This is a topic you might think I'd know all about, but actually I don't, because my focus was always Silk Road & the dark net markets, where research chemicals often showed up after being banned, but I didn't know much about what went on before they became normal illicit drugs. So this filled in a lot of holes for me.

Power starts with the Wester
Leanne Ford
Jun 04, 2013 Leanne Ford rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an excellent read if you have any interest in drug policy and the situation surrounding the current glut of 'legal' highs and their widespread availability through the web. The book presents opinions and information from a range of sources including manufacturers of legal highs, scientist, front line drug workers and health professionals, users and law enforcement officials. It is both objective and rational as well as very well written - Power has pitched the science at exactly the ...more
Christine Yen
Mar 10, 2014 Christine Yen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fascinating. Another book which makes me wish I'd kept up with my chemistry knowledge.
Frederick Allen
Nov 15, 2014 Frederick Allen rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads, arc

NOTE: The opinions within this review are that of myself and have been in no way influenced by the publisher, author, or the Goodreads website from which I obtained my Advanced Reader Copy.

I recently received a proper ARC copy of Mike Power's Drugs Unlimited via Goodreads. This book is an updated and soon to be more widely available version of his book Drugs 2.0; and it is one of the most amazing and disturbing books that I have ever read. It is amazing because of Mr. Power ability to explain th
Vince Darcangelo
Jan 08, 2015 Vince Darcangelo rated it really liked it

In 1996, Dan Baum published the definitive account of America’s complicated relationship with psychoactive Drugs Unlimitedsubstances. Smoke and Mirrors: The War on Drugs and the Politics of Failure is an exhaustive, apolitical narrative history of the war’s origin, evolution and cost, and though public opinion has changed (a recent Pew Research study found that Americans now favor treatment over prosecution and are against mandatory minimum sentencing by a
Rafal Szymanski
Apr 24, 2016 Rafal Szymanski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fascinating overview of the research chemical (RC) market up to around the end of 2012. You'll learn about how easy it is for someone knowledgeable in organic chemistry to create new drugs with similar effects to well known illegal drugs, from existing ones so as to dodge legal requirements and sell those drugs on the open Internet.

Even if you know a bit about drugs and research chemicals, the book has a number of interesting stories that you might not have heard. For example, in late 2008 inter
Vishal Misra
Aug 08, 2016 Vishal Misra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In 2015, the Government announced plans to update the drugs legislation with, what is now, the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016. As of May of this year, a blanket ban on so called "legal highs" came in to force. This piece of information makes this book dated. However, if you followed the debate regarding passage of this Act, then this an interesting book to read.

Drugs 2.0 is a meticulously researched analysis of the Research Chemical (RC) scene and it's intersections with technology. As I lear
Levi Amichai
Nerd sniped at the library! I hustled to finish it so I could get back to doing what I'm supposed to be doing.

I am laughably square, but Drugs 2.0 was incredibly interesting even so. The history of drugs and the internet is closely intertwined (one of many interesting facts you'll learn: the first sale over the internet was of marijuana, in 1971), and they illuminate one another very handily.

Power is a shameless Ecstasy partisan; it's probably just as well he doesn't try to hide it. He makes his
Johannes Knapp
Aug 12, 2013 Johannes Knapp rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I saw this as a recommended book on Amazon and decided to give it a try.

The book was generally worthwhile, though parts of it were boring (for example the history of online drug discussion forums on usenet, this doesn't really interest me). At the beginning it seemed the author was slightly biased but I can understand that, since its up to you to decide if buying drugs online is good or bad.

The information in the book was mostly correct and objective, at sometimes slightly dramatizing the situat
Oct 28, 2014 Amy rated it it was amazing
What a facinating look into the online world of buying and selling new designer chemicals. This in depth study of the developing market for new and creative ways to get high was an eye opener for me. While as a pharmacist I was aware of the ever increasing use and abuse of prescription drugs and the risks that come with it, I had no idea that there were this many designer chemicals available so easily. With just a simple click of the enter button on the computer a person can order almost any ...more
Oct 31, 2014 Heather rated it really liked it
Note: I received this ARC free courtesy of goodreads, first reads.

I really enjoyed this one, and I would recommend it to anyone interested in drug culture and/or the intersection between chemistry, technology, and drugs. It's got a lot of solid information (though I cannot attest to the accuracy of some of the organic chemistry discussed) and provides several quotes from people involved in all sides of the online drug trade. The chapter about the silk road was the most interesting for me because
Oct 24, 2014 GONZA rated it really liked it
Very interesting book that recounts the birth and development of "synthetic drugs" and how through the DarkNet selling has become not only rich in terms of profits, even extremely easy and almost risk-free. Really worrying.

Libro molto interessante che racconta la nascita e lo sviluppo delle "droghe sintetiche" e di come attraverso la DarkNet il loro smercio sia diventato, oltre che ricco in termini di profitti, anche estremamente facile e quasi privo di rischi. Veramente preoccupante.

Adam Wiggins
This book covers the fascinating topic of legal highs on the internet, and how it has interacted with the drug enforcement landscape in the last decade. The author appears to be a relative insider and quotes from interviews with many gray-market vendors.

Unfortunately, the writing is sloppy. It veers between detached observation and editorializing, and it rambles.
Jul 14, 2015 Steve rated it really liked it
Shelves: computer-inter
Your computer is the medicine chest for us all. Power does very readable explanation of the bliss or horror that is just a few clicks away. Its amazing that people will consume a potentially lethal powder or pill without any proof of ingredients or dosage information. If you have ever smoked pot or popped a pill this the book of true information without spin. First rate!
Richard McColl
Apr 18, 2015 Richard McColl rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's technical and perhaps at times chellenging due to the nature of the subject matter, but you'll not read a better book about the dark web and the world of synthetic drugs. Fascinating and hats off to Power for addressing such a complex topic.
Jul 26, 2013 Johan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: drugs
Really good introduction to the research chemical scene and the role of the Internet in relation to drugs. I fully agree with Leanne's review below.
Aug 29, 2013 Wim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
interessant, goed onderzocht. de eerste keer dat ik al deze info verzameld zie in een boek ipv op obscure websites online. geschreven op niveau van de geïnteresseerde leek
Alex Johnson
Jan 23, 2015 Alex Johnson rated it liked it
Interesting take on the online legal drug scene. The author was a little preachy at times but brings up some strong arguments in regards to current drug laws and the need for reform.
Dec 10, 2014 Ashley rated it it was amazing
You have to have a little knowledge of chemistry for this book, but it is mind blowing. Frightening, but full of knowledge and great source material.
Tyler Patrick
Feb 24, 2016 Tyler Patrick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting read on the online black market (including the fall of silk road) and how chemists are outrunning the government by making legal analogues of misc. drugs as well as new chemicals.
Dogman rated it liked it
Apr 25, 2014
Paul rated it it was amazing
Nov 09, 2014
Nigel Brunsdon
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Jun 25, 2014
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Steve Hahn rated it liked it
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Frazer Chapman
Frazer Chapman rated it it was amazing
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Martin Mccann rated it it was amazing
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Nov 29, 2014
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