Assassination market

related topics
{law, state, case}
{company, market, business}
{black, white, people}
{son, year, death}
{theory, work, human}
{group, member, jewish}
{system, computer, user}
{game, team, player}
{town, population, incorporate}

An assassination market is a prediction market where any party can place a bet (using anonymous electronic money, and pseudonymous remailers) on the date of death of a given individual, and collect a payoff if they "guess" the date accurately. This would incentivise assassination of individuals because the assassin, knowing when the action would take place, could profit by making an accurate bet on the time of the subject's death. Because the payoff is for knowing the date rather than performing the action of the assassin, it is substantially more difficult to assign criminal liability for the assassination.[1]

An early use of the term can be found in the Cyphernomicon by Timothy C. May.[2] It has been argued[3] that the feasibility of an assassination market precludes the development of any form of anonymous electronic money. Nation-states are capable either of arresting and prosecuting those underwriting such hypothetical payment systems as accessories to these crimes. This follows from the fact that anonymous digital cash requires publicly known underwriters, e.g. banks participating in guaranteeing and forwarding payments made using a hypothetical digital cash.

Left-anarchist Matt Taylor, a cypherpunk, declared in May 2001 that he was advancing assassination politics by taunting Ohio and California police online.[4]

He began an initiative called Operation Soft Drill — a term which reporter Declan McCullagh wrote was created by Bell — with the stated intention of intimidating police and corporate polluters into respecting human rights.[5] Taylor was arrested and jailed by Australian police a month later on charges of vandalizing a McDonald's restaurant.[4]


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