The Erowid Experience Vaults are an attempt to catalog the wide variety of experiences people have with psychoactive plants and chemicals as well as experiences with endogenous (non-drug) mystical experiences, drug testing, police interactions, deep experiences of connection to music, etc.
One of the things that has become extremely clear over Erowid's 5 years of researching psychoactives is that the variation in individual experience with any specific chemical is dramatic and unexpected. Huge differences occur in intensity and character of reactions even within a single individual at consistent dosages. Within a large population containing many different biochemistries, psychologies, personal histories, pharmacological baselines, varying dosages, quality of materials, and idiosyncratic reactions, the picture becomes extraordinarily complex.
Our intention with the Experience Vaults is to try to help illuminate this complex picture by documenting how and why people are using psychoactives and what people report their experiences to be. We hope to create a comprehensive system which simplifies the submission of reports, incorporates reviews of reports by trusted members with expertise in the area, and makes sorting, searching and accessing of reports as easy as possible.
The new Experience Vaults include a system for reviewing, categorizing, and then re-reviewing each experience that is entered with trained and knowledgeable volunteers reading each report and evaluating each one for interest, quality, credibility, and focus on effects or outcomes. Each report is then organized by substance (or non-substance category), primary category, and a number of secondary categories by which they can be sorted and filtered for viewing.
The cultural taboos and prohibitions against the use of psychoactives have unfortunately obstructed the collection of information about the extremely widespread use of these substances and we hope visitors will find our work helpful in studying the complex relationship between humans and psychoactive plants and drugs.
We have had an incredible response to the Experience Vaults, with nearly 20,000 reports having been submitted in the past two years. We believe these reports are an important part of documenting humanity's use of psychoactives, and we do our best to keep reviewing and processing reports, but it currently takes an average of 6 months for reports to be reviewed. Please be patient.
Copyrights / Usage Agreements
The reports in Erowid's Experience Vaults are copyrighted by Erowid Center. Authors have permission to use their own reports as they wish. Researchers and authors may NOT "mine", distill, or use aggregate data from Experience Vaults without prior permission. Publishing data analysis (in journals, books, or articles) without permission is in violation of the usage agreement of this website. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
to discuss projects and crediting requirements. We generally agree to such use, but Erowid is improperly cited and credited in most peer-reviewed articles that use our data. We're rectifying this by requiring prior permission.
Wish List / Future Features
- Over 100,000 experiences submittions (April 2013) : The design goal of version 1.0 was to handle up to 100K experiences.
- version 1.94 (2008-2013) : Various bug fixes, updates, and revisions.
- version 1.93 (May 2007) : Beta testing PDF report view, written by Zhah.
- version 1.92 (March 2006) : Timer-warning on submission page to warn people to edit long experience texts in an external editor. Added low tech anti-spam captcha and other stupid techniques to block some spam that had started coming in recently. Admin side, improved performance very slightly on triage, moved report bodies into separate table to try to improve non-body search performance.
- version 1.91 (July 2005) : Marginal and lower reports no longer shown by default: "show cellar" must be checked in the search page to find reports rated low. 1-3 stars shown to indicate report rating instead of different star colors.
- version 1.90 (Jan 2005) : Beta test for new triaging system ends, 1.0 release.
- version 1.85 (April 2004) : Beta testing triage system for admin side.
- version 1.7 (2003) : Substance names that appear in the dose chart at the top of each report are now linked to the main information vault for that substance.
- version 1.6 (July 15, 2001) : Original display date and number of views per report now being displayed at the bottom of each report.
- version 1.5 (Oct 16, 2000) : Added Author Collections and Advanced Search features as well as fixing a few bugs. Began tracking views of individual reports. There are about 11,000 report being read each day.
- version 1.0 (June 27, 2000) : The Experience Vaults go live.
- version 1.0 beta (June 15, 2000) : Beta testing of version 1.0 is started.
- version .5 (April, 2000) : The initial design of the system is completed.
- Visitor ratings. Comments and ratings filtered by members and regular visitors.
- Help Page. An introductory walk through for new visitors, describing the basic search functions and the logic behind the "in combination with / " syntax.