This morning, I was checking out the /r/deepweb subreddit, and saw a post called How to improve /r/deepweb? One of the things that the author was lamenting about the subreddit was that he put a lot of effort into writing the FAQ for it, and unsurprisingly, no one seemed to read it before posting (I must be one of the exceptions). Plus, people would continuously post the same stupid questions, like “Where can I buy a nuclear missile on the deep web?”
The author of this post was user Deku-shrub, author of the blog Pirate dot London – “edgy slogan here!” He’s one of the people whose opinion I truly trust when it comes to the dark web, because as far as I know, he knows what he’s talking about!
So, when it comes to the red room issue, he featured several links intended to debunk that topic, including this one: TruthFinder: Drugs, Scams, & Fraud | Real Crime on the Dark Web. The author of that article put forth this opinion about them:
A Red Room is a mythical dark web site that allegedly allows users to watch and/or participate in live interactive torture or murder. It’s a great idea for a post-apocalyptic horror film, but it doesn’t actually exist on the Internet — let alone the dark web.
I know that I’ve written several entries regarding this topic, even recently: The So-Called *Shadow Web* Is Fake! and Dark Web Sites That *Claim* To Be Red Rooms. And I didn’t start this blog to perpetuate more myths about the dark web, in all honesty! (Despite what some may think!!)
In the former, I had expressed the opinion that they may exist somewhere (without saying that they do)! Unfortunately, because I used weasel words like “may” or “possibly,” this may have helped continue the idea.
To be honest, I don’t know if they really exist or not! I’m not going to say that they do or don’t, because I don’t have proof. What I do want to figure out is that if red rooms definitely don’t exist, I want to know the reasons why.
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Most of the arguments against their existence relate to the fact that darknets like Tor, I2P, and Freenet tend to run very slowly. One of the reasons for this is that the technique of onion routing , which provides the layers of encryption necessary to anonymize Tor users, makes it near-impossible to live stream video over the network.
A second argument pertains to where the supposed videos are created and hosted from. Some people say that the videos are filmed in denied areas where it would be difficult to prosecute acts of murder and/or torture (which is further addressed in the video Deep Web Red Rooms 2 by Seek the Truth (who goes about debunking numerous urban legends).
The problem with the second argument is that in many of these “denied areas,” such as North Korea, it would be extremely difficult to set up a business of this nature. Not only might you have a tough time streaming internet, but there are numerous other loopholes you would have to get through! (e.g. Where the hell would you film it? In a field somewhere?)
Interestingly, in that very same video, Seek the Truth shows that he’s been in contact with the webmasters of a number of the sites that claim to be red rooms (just as I’d been), and his experience was similar. They wouldn’t show any content unless you paid first, and there was absolutely no proof that the sites were legit, which in all likelihood means that they were fake!
Truth: 5 – Red Rooms: 0
Personally, I don’t have 100% solid proof that red rooms exist or don’t exist. I’m leaning more and more toward “no,” even though the idea is certainly terrifying, and I’m the type of person who loves dark material.
Just to play devil’s advocate, however – let’s say you did want to create a fictitious (emphasis on the fiction) red room. You could do so on the clearnet, if you knew how, perhaps using a VPN or an SSH tunnel.
This may provide the privacy that people were (in theory) using Tor for. However, then the question becomes – where do people find the victims? On the street? On the internet?
I have heard of serial killers luring victims with fictitious modeling ads and things of that nature, but again, this is purely speculation on my part!
I wish I had a definitive conclusion about this issue, but nothing has proven otherwise to me…yet.
Don’t be disappointed – there’s lots of other sick shit out there!!