Online

Jan 27, 2011

Inside the hive-mind

Anonymous is supposed to be a "juvenile" "underground hate group". A look at its operations reveals a complex and thoughtful movement that is unlike traditional real-world activism.

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

“Our assessment is that the Egyptian government is stable and is looking for ways to respond to the legitimate needs and interests of the Egyptian people.” Hillary Clinton, January 25, Washington

29 comments

Leave a comment

29 thoughts on “Inside the hive-mind

  1. ronin8317

    Reality check : DDOS and hacking web sites cannot take down a regime. It does however encourage governments to implement draconian measure to curtail internet freedom, and to implement an identification regime where every packet can be traced.

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=22832

  2. Scott

    DDOS is the bogong moth of hacking; pure annoyance but not threatening. Solved by a couple of hundred thousand bucks in security consultant fees and a bit of kit from cisco.
    As for Anonymous, it seems to be a protest movement for a generation that can’t be assed leaving the family home for anything but a music festival. Do you honestly think that the mullahs in Iran will be worried that their iran.gov.ir website is down?
    As they say in the classics, decisions are made by those who show up, not those who fire the LOIC from the safety of the bedroom.

  3. Maroubraman

    Whether or not DDOS attacks are very threatening is beside the point. They are a reflection of the basic Anonymous theology. They find something they disagree with, and rather than work out ways to openly and legally bring about change, they resort to anonymous acts of violence. And that their violence is mostly on-line assaults like DDOS attacks does not change the nature of the tactic, which is essentially terrorist, like it or not. They purport to advocate freedom of speech and freedom in general, but their methods reveal other intentions. This is the same “group” that tried to bring down Australian government websites not too long ago. Several Anonymous “members” were convicted and jailed over criminal violations of federal law in their assaults against the Church of Scientology in the US. And just yesterday, five Anonymous “members” were arrested in the UK following their assaults against Visa, PayPal, etc. The latter most clearly illustrates their terrorist mindset: They object to attempts to censor Wikileaks, so they wage cyber-violence against Visa and PayPal for exercising THEIR right to withdraw support of Wikileaks. Like all terrorists, they see any collateral damage to innocents as justifiable.

  4. Alena V

    That’s an impressive analysis, Bernard.

  5. drsmithy

    “They are a reflection of the basic Anonymous theology. They find something they disagree with, and rather than work out ways to openly and legally bring about change, they resort to anonymous acts of violence. And that their violence is mostly on-line assaults like DDOS attacks does not change the nature of the tactic, which is essentially terrorist, like it or not.”

    A DDoS is no more an “act of violence” than a few hundred greenies chaining themselves to trees. It’s about as non-violent an action as you can take while still doing something at all.

    “Like all terrorists, they see any collateral damage to innocents as justifiable.”

    By that measure, everyone who seeks or enacts change is a “terrorist”. There’s _always_ some sort of collateral “damage”.

  6. AR

    Maroubra can insert Hubbarsist references into any subject.

  7. Bernard Keane

    How are your Thetans, Maroubraman? And never forget, before you sign a billion-year contract, you should read the fine print.

  8. Maroubraman

    My guess is that if you had anything better to say AR, you would not have to try personal insults.

    And Dr. Smithy, I agree with you that DDOS attacks are a pretty feeble form of assault hardly worthy of the term “violence.” But it is nothing at all like “a few hundred greenies chaining themselves to trees.”

    You may choose to ignore it, but quite a few people see the hypocrisy in Anonymous’ original assault on the Church of Scientology — they accused the Church of violating freedom of “speech” so they pledged to destroy the Church’s presence on the internet to prevent the Church from having a forum from which to express its point of view.

    And your conclusion that “by that measure, everyone who seeks or enacts change is a terrorist” is as illogical as your tree-hugger analogy.

    I am sure there are well meaning people living in the Anonymous universe, including many who idealistically want to help bring freedom to people oppressed elsewhere, whether politically, religiously, or otherwise. Good luck to them. But there are also individuals who hide behind Anonymity in the hope that they can commit harmful and destructive acts without considering or facing the consequences. I am old fashioned. I believe such people may hide from everyone but cannot hide from their own conscience. Call it karma. Call it what you want.

    There is a difference between an idealistic goal and the means used to attain it.

    Freedom of speech/information? Good thing.

    Use illegal DDOS attacks to punish companies like Visa, PayPal, etc., for choosing to withdraw support for Wikileaks? Bad thing.

    A DDOS is just like greenies hugging trees? Prisoners in the dock always come up with justifications, explanations and excuses. Did you mummy ever tell you, two wrongs don’t make a right?

  9. Maroubraman

    Hi Bernard. Just saw your comment after I posted mine. Like AB, don’t you have anything more intelligent to say than try to insult me personally?

  10. Maroubraman

    By the way AB, Bernard and all. I think the whole Crikey world knows I am a Scientologist. No need to “out” me.

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details

Sending...