Vicemo shows Venmo transactions related to drugs, alcohol, and sex.

Who’s Buying Drugs, Sex, and Booze on Venmo? This Site Will Tell You.

Who’s Buying Drugs, Sex, and Booze on Venmo? This Site Will Tell You.

Future Tense
The Citizen's Guide to the Future
Feb. 23 2015 1:13 PM

Who’s Buying Drugs, Sex, and Booze on Venmo? This Site Will Tell You.

vicemo3
Whoa, Kate, chill out.

Screencap from Vicemo

If Silk Road was a little too intense for you, there's another digital service where it's quick and easy to do your drug transactions. And all of your friends are there! This is gonna be great. A site called Vicemo reveals a hilariously seedy underbelly by offering a livestream of Venmo transactions that involve "drugs, booze, and sex."

Venmo is a popular hybrid of a mobile payment app and a social network. You use it to pay your friends when they buy the pizza, and get paid by them when you put six concert tickets on your credit card. And these transactions are public (so everyone will know how popular you are and how ultra fun your life is), unless you specifically set a transaction to friends-only or private.

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Vicemo uses search terms related to drug culture, drinking, and sex to pull out relevant Venmo transactions. From there the stream basically runs itself. There are some accidental inclusions, like a mother paying for her baby's cough syrup, or someone talking about "coke" meaning Coca-Cola, but by and large it's all hookers and crack.

Most of the transactions are probably jokes, and don't actually involve the substances or sex acts they talk about. It’s a lot funnier to pay someone for, "Oral pleasure.....through breakfast foods" or "the crack salad" instead of just "lunch." But some among them must be real, especially as pot legalization ramps up. It also seems more legit when someone is using a pill or mushroom emoji and no words.

Vicemo was created by two developers, Mike Lacher and Chris Baker. Lacher says, "Venmo's pretty unique since there's a social component to the payments, with people posting publicly about what they're paying for. We thought it would be funny to see who's publicly posting about buying drugs, booze, and sex."

If you want to see what the kids are up to these days, there's some hilariously graphic stuff on Vicemo. Or you might get a rude awakening about how visible your recreational drug use is.

Future Tense is a partnership of SlateNew America, and Arizona State University.