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Outlining a typology of steroid suppliers located on a popular international fitness and bodybuilding Forum

Luke Turnock

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Luke Turnock, Outlining a typology of steroid suppliers located on a popular international fitness and bodybuilding Forum (23.10.2021), Beltz Juventa, 69469 Weinheim, ISSN: 0341-1966, 2021 #3, S.202

Getrackt seit 05/2018

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Beschreibung / Abstract

In recent years, there has been a rise in image and performance enhancing drug (IPED) use. With understanding access and supply of drugs important to harm reduction, this article explores IPED supply on a “surface web” fitness forum, outlining a typology of suppliers located in this space, through a digital ethnography drawing data from over 28,800 unique forum posts. Results explore the diversity of supply observed in this cultural space, examining supply along four axes, between open/closed; general/specialist; established/opportunistic; and finally between steroid “brewers” manufacturing product, and “resellers” of premade product. This typology informs understanding of how the “open” yet culturally embedded market structure of forums influences diverse norms of supply, which challenge traditional conceptions of illicit drug markets. The article also illustrates how culturally-embedded market structures in increasingly popular digital market spaces are influencing supply norms.

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