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Dark Commerce

How a New Illicit Economy Is Threatening Our Future
Narrated by: Kate Harper
Length: 11 hrs and 26 mins
3 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)
Regular price: $20.97
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Publisher's Summary

A comprehensive look at the world of illicit trade

Though mankind has traded tangible goods for millennia, recent technology has changed the fundamentals of trade, in both legitimate and illegal economies. In the past three decades, the most advanced forms of illicit trade have broken with all historical precedents and, as Dark Commerce tells, now operate as if on steroids, tied to computers and social media. In this new world of illicit commerce, which benefits states and diverse participants, trade is impersonal and anonymized, and vast profits are made in short periods with limited accountability to sellers, intermediaries, and purchasers.

Louise Shelley examines how new technology, communications, and globalization fuel the exponential growth of dangerous forms of illegal trade - the markets for narcotics and child pornography online, the escalation of sex trafficking through web advertisements, and the sale of endangered species for which revenues total in the hundreds of millions of dollars. The illicit economy exacerbates many of the world’s destabilizing phenomena: the perpetuation of conflicts, the proliferation of arms and weapons of mass destruction, and environmental degradation and extinction. Shelley explores illicit trade in tangible goods - drugs, human beings, arms, wildlife and timber, fish, antiquities, and ubiquitous counterfeits - and contrasts this with the damaging trade in cyberspace, where intangible commodities cost consumers and organizations billions as they lose identities, bank accounts, access to computer data, and intellectual property.

Demonstrating that illicit trade is a business the global community cannot afford to ignore and must work together to address, Dark Commerce considers diverse ways of responding to this increasing challenge.

©2018 Louise I. Shelley (P)2018 Princeton University Press

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good overview but too political

Example: the chapter on rhino horns doesn’t talk about the proposed solution of privatizing land and legalizing the rhino horn trade so that the owners of the private herds can make enough money for the preservation of the species. This is a reasonable solution that probably the most likely to work, but it isn’t suggested potentially because it is anti-big government/globalist. Also, the author hates on President Trump without going into why she is critiquing his decisions. Sorry, but his positions/decisions have merit worth discussion even if you ultimately disagree with them.

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Best to just collate news articles

I was impressed by this book at all.

it was just facts and figures, more like a report than anything i wouldnt waster your time.

Boring

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Important Topic

This book is important for our time. I liked the historical perspective and in some areas, the examples offered support the assertions. In other areas it doesn’t.

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Boring and repetitive.

Sounded like an interesting topic but badly written and very repetitive. The author doesn't offer the insight I was hoping for. It's just a collection of dry facts.