When a team of seven developers launched Darkcoin in April 2014, it didn’t turn many heads.
Like Bitcoin, it initially wallowed in obscurity—but unlike Bitcoin, it only took a few months for online free markets such as Nucleus and Diabolus to start accepting it for drug purchases.
Fast forward to today, and Darkcoin is now seeing the beginnings of its romance with crypto gambling. The online casinos DirectBet and Unicoin Casino are among the first to add Darkcoin to their lists of accepted cryptocurrencies.
Why the uptake? Simply, it’s because Darkcoin is more private than Bitcoin. Its protocol is built on what its developers call Darksend. Darkcoin automatically mixes every transaction with the inputs of at least two other transactions. This makes identity tracking nearly impossible, which is a welcome benefit to gamblers, who are frequently targeted by states for persecution, and by corporations for exclusion.
“Coinbase has been confirmed to be denying service if the coins the users are transacting with originated from online betting sites,” explains a Darkcoin blog post. “The only way they can know this is through [Bitcoin] blockchain analysis. In a way this makes Bitcoin even less private than traditional fiat, with which you couldn’t make this sort of analysis as easily.”
Fans also claim that payouts in online betting can be faster with Darkcoin than with Bitcoin, because the confirmation time for a transaction is faster (via InstantX).
A spokesperson for DirectBet, who now accepts Darkcoin along with Bitcoin, Litecoin and Dogecoin, explained their company’s decision:
“Last month we had a poll in our Bitcointalk forum thread asking members which other altcoins they would like to bet with DirectBet. Darkcoin immediately received an overwhelming amount of votes and support and that was the trigger for us to add it.”
I don’t use drugs or gamble, but I can’t help but marvel: isn’t cryptocurrency innovation grand? And don’t forget—Darkcoin can be mined with your regular ol’ computer. No special hardware needed yet.
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