Stockholm syndrome and Ponzi schemes, what is the correlation?

By MikeZillo | Alternative knowledge | 27 Oct 2022

Mike, what does this title have to do with crypto?

Dear Reader, I am referring to victims of Ponzi and/or scams. If you read until the end, you will figure it out.

Brief introduction:

On film and tv, Stockholm syndrome is often referred to as the somewhat paradoxical link that sometimes arises in a kidnapping between victim and kidnapper. However, according to the scientific literature, it is a psychological condition that occurs rather rarely. In fact, it is not included in any international psychiatric classification system. It is an unconscious defense mechanism, not a free choice, which allows the subject to overcome situations of very high stress.

Stockholm syndrome: what it is?

Stockholm syndrome can be defined as a psychological condition that leads to the establishment of effective relationships between kidnap victims and their captors. That is, it occurs when a person, held against his will, begins to feel positive and even affective feelings toward his captors. However, it seems to be an automatic and unconscious response to the trauma of kidnapping, not a deliberate and conscious behavior.

A survival mechanism

In situations of danger and terror, people often tend to establish emotional relationships with their tormentors as a defense and survival mechanism. In the case of kidnapping, if the kidnapper is keeping the hostages alive, the victim’s tendency is to think that being kind and understanding will increase the chances of survival. When a victim feels that his or her life is totally dependent on another person, he or she tends to develop a psychological attachment mechanism, hoping to avoid death. Thus, it is a survival mode put in place by our brain to endure a traumatic and frightening situation.

Why is it called Stockholm Syndrome?

The name goes back to the 1973 robbery at the Sveriges Kreditbanken in Stockholm, Sweden. The term was forged by psychiatrist Nils Bejerot, who helped the police negotiate with the kidnappers. On that day, two ex-convicts barricaded themselves with four hostages in the basement of the bank. The siege lasted six days and the surprising thing was that, during the kidnapping, the victims established an emotional relationship with the robbers.

Moreover, after release, the hostages had become so attached to the kidnappers that they refused to cooperate with the police and even defended them at trial. It appeared paradoxical, then, that the hostages expressed feelings of gratitude toward their tormentors who, armed with machine guns, continually endangering their lives, had held them captive for 131 hours in a 17-square-meter basement. Even once they were freed, some hostages remained in contact with their captors.


Ponzi-Scams victims, why can they enter into a sort of Stockholm syndrome?

Having been in the crypto world for several years, I have often been contacted by promoters of scam systems. After some time and experience, I can say that I can spot these kinds of scams very easily, especially because they have very similar patterns every time.

Be careful, I am not saying that every time someone loses money is a scam. Keep in mind that business can also go wrong due to many unforeseen events connected to mere entrepreneurship and the markets. Besides, in this specific historical moment, a lot more variables have come into force, increasing the spread between the success chances and the failure risks.

That matter, some time ago, I decided to start a small section called “ScamBuster,” with the goal of warning people about possible scams and schemes that I think are better to stay away from.

And here comes the point where we connect to Stockholm syndrome.

Often some people comment on these articles or write privately saying they are not scams and that it’s all legitimate. Already in the past, I have seen people being scammed by some friends who had invited them into these scams. Despite what happened, these people continued to trust their friends who had previously led them into a scam system that had lost them money.

Are they simply greedy because they hope to be the first to enter into the coming business, to make money on the back of the after-coming, or do they think they can really believe that the next business will be their Silver Bullet?


And here I wondered:

Why is there a tendency of Ponzi victims to believe their recruiters instead of other independent and especially disinterested sources?

My analyses of projects are always neutral and interest-free, in fact, I write them to make people think about the legitimacy or otherwise of the projects they are in or want to enter. Despite this, many people fail to think for themselves and combine information. They continue to trust their recruiters by ignoring information from outside and independent sources.

Can we call it a kind of Stockholm syndrome?

Have you had any experience with it? Tell me about it in a comment.

How do you rate this article?


MikeZillo Verified Member

Daily Trader, Mining Farm Project Manager, Blockchain consultant, Cryptocurrency evangelist. You can find more videos here Telegram: @mikezillo

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