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Anonymous, decentralized transactions using dead drops only works with side-channels for reputation, or with security deposits.

Side-channels for reputation like posting cryptographic proof on darknet forums isn't scalable or reliable.

And security deposits without a third-party adjudicator just move the trust issue around without eliminating it.

One ideal solution could be a cryptocurrency with on-chain confirmation of the real-world transaction by both parties after the fact.

When both parties to the transaction can point to a series of successful transactions through a web of trust, then the central marketplace for reputation or escrow is no longer needed.




> One ideal solution could be a cryptocurrency with on-chain confirmation of the real-world transaction by both parties after the fact.

How do you prevent merchants from just creating a thousand fake transactions to make them look reputable?


This is where the web of trust comes in.

You give the greatest trust to reviews provided by the anonymous identities you have transacted with.

You give progressively less trust to reviews by identities 1, 2, ..., n hops away from those you have transacted with.

If a merchant creates 1000 sock-puppet consumers, they won't be reachable from your trust network, so you'll give them little if any weight.


> You give the greatest trust to reviews provided by the anonymous identities you have transacted with.

I don’t quite follow. Consumers deal with merchants. Consumers give reviews to merchants. So the anonymous identities you mention will be customers that I don’t know. Merchants won’t review each other, I presume.

In other words, as I understand it, the “anonymous identities I’ve transacted with” will be merchants, who don’t review other merchants.

> If a merchant creates 1000 sock-puppet consumers, they won't be reachable from your trust network, so you'll give them little if any weight.

What if do a successful deal with this merchant? Will I then trust that all those 1000 fake transactions took place? And will the people who trust me also believe that?




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