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Try out PMC Labs and tell us what you think. Learn More. This article presents selected findings from a qualitative study of Ecstasy sellers and their sales practices, knowledge of distribution networks, buyer-seller relationships, and self-reported drug use. In-depth interviews were conducted with 80 men and women who had sold five or more hits of Ecstasy five or more Cp pressed pills in the six months prior to the interview. Study participants described their perceptions of the various types of Ecstasy they had distributed or used themselves. We demonstrate that considering Ecstasy branding increases our understanding of buyer and seller relationships.

Ecstasy is the street nomenclature for MDMA 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine. The Cp pressed pills of Ecstasy has evolved to encompass a plethora of brand names and drugs manufactured in an assortment of shapes and colors with the choice of powder or pressed tablets with varying ingredients that are sold under the name Ecstasy. There is scant research in the area of Ecstasy branding, particularly from the perspective of the distributor.

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In this study, the authors explore the importance and role of pill brands and preferences for powder or pressed pills from the perspectives of a sample of San Francisco Bay Area Ecstasy sellers. While there is no physical hangover analogous to an alcohol hangover, some Cp pressed pills has shown that users experience depressed mood in the days following use, although this effect seems to be reversible Morton According to Ecstasy users, the positive attributes far outweigh any of the adverse side effects Levy et al.

Although Ecstasy Cp pressed pills classified as a Schedule I drug in the US inrecreational Ecstasy use spread worldwide, beginning on the holiday island of Ibiza, Spain. Ecstasy use did not achieve mainstream status in the United States until a decade later, concurrent with the emergence of a domestic rave scene Sloan In these earlier times users would ingest the drug orally in the form of small, white or light-colored pressed tablets; various pill colors and types of Ecstasy had barely surfaced. In the late s and into the turn of this century, a wide variety of Ecstasy brands appeared with distinctive pressings, shapes and colors.

What is Ecstasy? Ecstasy is distinctive as it refers to not necessarily one drug but possibly to several substances; and for the Cp pressed pills of this article, we will use the term Ecstasy to denote a potentially multiple substance drug. Whether Ecstasy can be considered a deer drug or a concept drug, there appears to be marketing of Ecstasy through brand names. In order to discuss branding in the context of the Ecstasy market, it is necessary to look at the definition of brand.

A drug distributor understandably might want to utilize branding to create and maintain a connection with his or her customers. According to Van de Wijngaart and colleaguesmost Ecstasy users obtain their pills via friends or acquaintances and many are not sure of the composition of these pills. While the aforementioned research did not delve into the specifics of Ecstasy brands, it would appear that friendships between buyers and sellers yielded trust in the purity and quality of the Ecstasy exchanged regardless of brand. The present study will further explore the importance of Ecstasy brand reputation versus the social bonds between buyers and sellers of Ecstasy.

Ecstasy is not the first illicit drug to be distinguished by brand names. Drugs like lysergic acid diethylamide LSD and heroin have been stamped with various symbols over time, often spawned by popular culture and recognizable icons.

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McCormick notes that LSD has the longest history of imagery in its marketing. The early des used for LSD were reminiscent of childhood fantasies and inspired by popular cartoons of the time, including Cp pressed pills Mouse in Fantasia, Snoopy, Mr. Natural, and Alice in Wonderland. Oftentimes these images referenced the purported surreal, psychedelic experience produced by the drug also known as acid.

As production techniques evolved along with technological advances over the years, blotter acid prints began to carry images of the prevailing culture as a sort of mockery, ranging from national monuments to the official FBI emblem McCormick Cell phones and beepers increased in popularity for dealers, diminishing the role of drug stamps. The researchers suggest that heroin stamps functioned as a chronicling, not only of the heroin market at the time, but also of inner city life and possibly subconscious responses to what distributors saw in the world around them.

Ecstasy labeling can be viewed in a similar way to heroin stamps Cp pressed pills acid blotter sheets; however, findings from analyses of our interview data and reviews of Ecstasy-related websites indicate that Ecstasy branding is somewhat distinctive compared to labeling in other drug markets.

According to the Cp pressed pills States Drug Enforcement Administration DEAmajor distributors package Ecstasy with appealing logos in hopes of building brand loyalty, instilling confidence in the product, and ultimately promoting use of the drug as fun and harmless. Media and law enforcement reports have claimed that Ecstasy sellers market the drug to children by creating candy-colored pills with kid-friendly logos DenverDA.

Although the majority of sellers interviewed for this study were not major distributors or manufacturers, we wanted to determine what our sample thought about the purpose and effects of Ecstasy brands and how important they were in a business sense. Did buyers prefer one brand to another and, if so, why? Unlike heroin stamps, Ecstasy branding has occurred worldwide as Ecstasy use evolved from underground parties to mainstream use. And while LSD iconography was steeped in hippie-inspired emblems like peace s and rainbows, the commercial logos of Ecstasy brands reveal a different ideology altogether McCormick While not every Ecstasy brand is based on corporate identifiers, the essence of consumer culture is apparent in the marketing of this drug with pill brands like Motorola and Mitsubishi.

These labels also seem to reflect the current state of society in which Ecstasy pills could be seen as cultural artifacts of middle class, drug-using social worlds. We found the Internet to be a useful resource in discovering details about Ecstasy. From DEA operations to harm reduction guides, online Ecstasy information is plentiful. Schifano and colleagues assert that the Cp pressed pills of the MDMA market can be easily assessed in cyberspace. They found that nongovernment websites ranked second to friends in importance and perceived accuracy, followed by information obtained in drug treatment and from physicians.

Falck et al. Evidently, young people today see the Internet as an important tool for gathering information on Ecstasy. An examination of Ecstasy-related websites reveals that Ecstasy users from all over the world access various websites and online bulletin boards to share information, particularly about specific brands. One such site is Pillreports. This daughter site of the Australian Bluelight. At the time of this writing, pills could only be rated above an eight if their purity had been tested using a kit available for purchase online; testing kits consist of a chemical reagent that reacts to the presence of specific drugs by changing colors.

This site proved helpful in gathering information about various pill brands.

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Unfortunately, few of our participants were familiar with this website. The websites they accessed more often, such as DanceSafe. At the time of our research DanceSafe also provided a list of recent Ecstasy pill brand laboratory test. The phenomenon of brands in Ecstasy markets necessitated further investigation into their ificance to sellers and buyers. With minimal available information on this subject, it was unclear how important brands were to individuals who both sold and used Ecstasy.

Past work in other drug markets, such as the aforementioned Wendel and Curtis study of heroin stamps, suggest that any sort of drug imagery may serve as subcultural text. Cp pressed pills decided to study how the labeling of Ecstasy related to Cp pressed pills social world of this drug from the perspective of those entrenched in these markets. In order to investigate a full range of sales practices, we extended the study to relatively low-level sellers in hopes of garnering information from both initiates and experienced distributors.

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Participants had to have sold five or more doses of Ecstasy five Cp pressed pills more times in the six months preceding the interview. After acquainting the participant with the nature of the study and completing informed consent procedures, the interview proceeded with the tape-recorded, depth interview portion followed by the questionnaire.

All of the study's instruments and protocols were subject to the approval and oversight of the Institute for Scientific Analysis Internal Review Board. Of those, 14 were attending full-time, and 15 were attending part-time.

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Of those, 50 were employed full-time and 20 were employed part-time. Study participants were predominantly White, male, middle to upper-middle class, and in their twenties. We analyzed findings from both our depth interview and questionnaire data.

The depth interviews were transcribed and manually coded using a list of common themes that emerged from initial data analysis. Afterwards, codes were entered into Ethnograph 5. We then conducted searches for relevant coded segments.

Questionnaire Cp pressed pills were entered into SPSS We ran frequencies to find which brand names were most commonly reported by our interviewees, and conducted analyses of questions regarding to whom our participants sold as well as Ecstasy testing practices and perceptions regarding purity.

In the early phases of our study, data emerged from depth interviews indicating the relevance of the branding phenomenon to our participants. The data collection process revealed that Ecstasy brands and labels could reveal a great deal about particular drug markets. Ecstasy brands and types may influence purchasing choices among customers, and suppliers may distribute specific brands to appeal to these customers. The choice of logos may reflect aspects of various Ecstasy-using social worlds. Interviews with study participants revealed the ways in which sellers chose Cp pressed pills utilize or not utilize Ecstasy labels.

After conducting searches of the aforementioned codes, we realized that we needed to gather more specific information on Ecstasy branding from the data.

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We surveyed the Internet to track the pill brands mentioned by our participants to observe images of specific pills, their contents if availablereviews of the pills given by users, and their ratings. Weekly checks were conducted of DanceSafe.

At the time of our Internet research toDanceSafe. While we checked this website weekly, updates on pill test occurred less frequently, closer to monthly Cp pressed pills not with any standard regularity. We made notes of brand names and descriptive characteristics of each pill that came from the Bay Area.

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Typically, there were new pill ratings entered at least on a weekly basis. The majority of the popular pill brands mentioned by our participants were observable on both websites. Various batches were noted to be within each of the popular brands, Cp pressed pills therefore testing and ratings differed greatly. The majority of this sample characterized themselves as low- to mid-level sellers.

They knew little about manufacturing Ecstasy and how the names of pills were chosen. Not one of them had chosen an inia with which Cp pressed pills stamp pills or had pressed tablets themselves. Still, their perceptions about the meaning and function of pill brands in Ecstasy markets were valuable since these participants were often both sellers and users. Probably just like quality assurance. An interviewee who distributed powder MDMA in capsules at the peak of her sales also felt that brand names referenced quality as a marketing strategy.

All the other ones had names, and that was in relationship to whatever emblem or logo was stamped on the top of them. But even like the alligators, I think, are supposed to be Lacoste. You know what I mean? With a similar notion of deer appeal, a year-old White man who only sold powder or capsule Ecstasy understood the use of brand names for Ecstasy.

After telling us that he would never distribute press tabs, he expressed his thoughts on the purpose of Ecstasy labels and the relevance of brand loyalty. Just for marketing. For marketing I think like if a certain pill is good and popular and people like that combination like cocktails, then people look for that name again and test that brand name.

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