Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Anonymous Hacktivism

I like the idea of Anonymous. An entity that can cause governments and large oligarchies/monopolies to stop and think about things. Can we get away with this? What's going to happen if this gets out? It's not just what something like Anonymous can do to such groups, it's also about what information they can simply expose and let the public know about. Unfortunately an idea is just an idea until someone brings it to life, and it's this life-bringing that I don't like. When a thought or idea is executed there are so many ways for it to run astray. What is Anonymous? Who is it? An organized group dedicated to justice and truth? Random individuals who may or may not find themselves pointed toward the same goal? The latter makes more sense to me, which is what makes something like the Anonymous phenomenon so dangerous. Individuals with individual goals.

This individualism is what gives something like Anonymous its power. There's no overarching goal or central authority that can be exploited or abused. A good thing that comes of this is if people branding themselves as Anonymous start doing things that other people who also call themselves Anonymous don't like then a sort of policing starts going on. Still, this kind of hacktivism is hard for me to like in all but theory because how do you police a group of individuals? Their only concern for each other is most likely that they aren't hindered by the others and without a central authority or some kind of regulation how is it determined when things have gone too far? I do not believe that hacktivism like what Anonymous performs is a good thing for our world, and that hacktivism is nine out of ten times something we could do without.


  1. The way you describe Anonymous reminds me of militias. They are both ready to protect citizens from the government if the need arises. Like you said, it sounds good in theory. Though I think it might become dangerous if things get out of control.

  2. What Anonymous does for society could be both good and bad, yes. But do you think the biggest issue is how people might react to the information Anonymous posts? Anonymous is simply taking information it knows and making it available to anyone who cares to read it. Thinking about it that way means that the regular, every-day citizens are the one making it a bad thing, because they either don't react to something important, or they OVER react and skew the real meaning of what Anonymous posts.

  3. Anonymity is the pussification of society. While hacktivism can be good or bad, it reminds me of sloppy journalism. Credibility is held in claiming your thoughts.

  4. You say that Hactivism is positive 9 out of 10 times, what about the 1 of 10. Why are we going to let people hurt that portion of the population freely, for the good of the majority. I thought we were over that as a society. We need to create rules for 100% of the population.

  5. That is a good point about hacktivists in general. In theory, they could be a highly efficient group of people dedicated to good in the world. However, this may not be the case. With every hacker possibly having their own personal agenda and nobody to oversee them/suspend hackers who don't play by the rules... what might happen?

    Also, it could very well be possible that everybody in a group like Anonymous might have the same goal in mind, but the goal might be malicious or even evil. There's been plenty of groups banded together in the past that possessed a like goal, but that doesn't mean it was good goal. Take the Nazi party and the KKK as examples.

    Rebels can be good, bad, unorganized, organized, etc. There are so many possibilities that you just never know.