Is the hacktivist group called Anon good or bad in your opinion?
As a member of Anon i would like peoples input and try to understand what the misconceptions that are out there.
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I know your causes are primarily the protection of free speech and right to privacy. I support these goals to a certain extent, though I'm not an absolutist about it, and clearly neither are you guys.
How exactly does shutting down websites of the NZ Parliament or Norwegian political parties quite help in acheiving this aim without employing brutal consequencialism?
You are like the new age Robin Hood , doing things that those in power would attempt to suppress , but the common people know you are doing what you feel is right and moral.
If 'illegal' meant 'bad' , then every revolution that citizens of a negative government acted out on would be 'bad'. I see you all as fighting for what you feel are good ideas. Hacking is just one method of accomplishing these goals. I have no problem with breaking the law if it is for the betterment of the world. (Some other people may say otherwise , but if I need to steal to save a family , I find that stealing is quite justified.)
But I am curious ... just how big are you. A thousand active members? ten thousand active members? A hundred? Do you have millions of dollars in financial backing or just a few thousand?
Much like Dave G, I think that any group without central government can't be seen as always bad or good. According to the membership criteria, if I was to identify as a member of anonymous and murder someone in the name of anonymous, because I believe that will uphold the ideals that anonymous identifies with, then that would be bad. While this is somewhat of an exaggeration, examples of ridiculous and horrible anonops have existed, like when they hacked flashing lights into epilepsy websites. That should never have happened, and no one will ever know if it was actually done by the RIAA or the church of scientology, or one of Anonymous's many enemies, attempting to attack the name of anonymous.
Having said that, I think that the loose structure of anonymous is actually a great thing, almost like an open source collective. Also, having said that, I don't believe it's very likely that Anonymous has as loose a structure as it purports to. Much like the ideal structure that "anarchists" seem to favor, I think the true government of anonymous is probably through hegemony. I use that word "hegemony", because I think it is likely that while there isn't any official legislation, there probably are people who hold much more sway than others, and act loosely as hegemons. This structure would be advantageous to founders of anonymous or hegemons of anonymous, because it absolves them of responsability of any anonops and would make it very difficult to prove that they incited those. I think that more than anything, strong indications that this is true exist in anonymous's incredibly swift and sophisticated SQL injection retaliation of HBGary. Especially because that retaliation was in response to claims that key anon members were identified(even if that was bullshit).
In short, I think anonymous is a great thing. They frequintly so consistently, time and time again fight for better goals, which happen to be my goals. I've never payed more than $300,000 dollars for a CD, so I deffinately wouldn't want a court to tell me that I stole that much by downloading a CD. More importantly, Anonymous isn't just a bunch of kids making trouble(all though some of them are, surely). The HBGary scandal, I think is a turning point for the cultural view of anonymous, showing that they're not an enemy to be taken lightly, and I'm sure now that people who are considering taking the job of bringing them down, secretly don't want to because they're afraid of them. As they should be.
I find groups like Anonymous a great foil against the secrecy. An open government is a government of the free.
When the people know what there government is up to and all the cards are on the table you can have better outcomes.