Russian coffee brand Chernyi Black is claiming that it is the first legal product advertiser on the Dark Net, with an edgy campaign that utilizes the anonymous communication network Tor to position its coffee a little like an illegal drug.
Chernyi is operating a shop at cherniyx23pmfane.onion, which is only viewable via Tor. Banner ads on Tor, as well as postings on Facebook showcasing real characters from the Russian capital's underworld, and flyers in nightclubs are directing people there. Once they've found the online store, users can make a purchase using Bitcoins and the Qiwi payment system, and will then receive coordinates for a physical shop in Moscow where they can pick up their product. The campaign is by Possible, Moscow.
Artem Temirov, co-owner of Black Cooperative, which makes Chernyi, said: "There is a generally held perception in Russia that coffee is harmful and shouldn't be consumed on a daily basis. We love flipping stereotypes upside down and decided to confront this stereotype about coffee being a drug with the stereotype about Tor as a platform that exists solely for drug trafficking. There is science, there is medicine, there is a clear understanding of what addiction and drugs are. Finally, we have a reason to declare that our much-loved coffee brand is not an addictive drug."