Anonymous is not an organization. It is a hacktivist movement. Anonymous is an idea—or, more accurately, a group of ideas—and anyone on the internet can be a part of the movement and a part of that idea. In some ways, most people who use the internet are a part of that idea. And there’s more to it than Guy Fawkes masks (which, by the way, are a reference to V For Vendetta and not directly to Guy Fawkes, who was actually a lunatic).
Different spokespeople within Anonymous talk about different things. There’s no hierarchy or chain of command or leaders—just people and ideas and group efforts. I do not agree with all of those ideas. Sometimes, there are statements against capitalism, arguments against the existence of government, or statements against the use of predator drones overseas or the domestic use of surveillance drones (I’m fine with surveillance drones so long as they are used within certain ethical parameters—just like wiretaps). I love capitalism. I think that anyone willing to submit to anarchy is merely romanticizing what would actually be a deplorable abandonment of all moral and social responsibility—particularly towards those who cannot protect themselves and their property. Some members of Anonymous are anti-police. I am so not anti-police. Sometimes police officers do terrible things, yes. Sometimes teachers or electricians do terrible things.
Every now and then, there’s even a crazy statement about secret societies and the Illuminati (the kind of nonsense that I just live for when it shows up in comments on Evil Beet Gossip. I mean, have you read those comments? People analyze music videos and Madonna’s half-time show and find little things and then make up the most outlandish theories about Illuminati ritual, which apparently encompasses anything and everything). Again, Anonymous has no one official mouthpiece. There are going to be a few crazies in any group—but it just stands out more when that group is a minority or otherwise cloaked in mystery.
But, you know what? Anonymous gives hell to “White Power” and Neo-Nazi groups. Anonymous reminds powerful government organizations (not just in the US and Europe, by the way) that they are not all-powerful when those governments and organizations do something bad. Anonymous members work to protect ecosystems. Anonymous did an awesome job as one of the many, many groups that worked tirelessly to make the Westboro Baptist Church hate-group’s attempts to protest at the Sandy Hook funerals into a miserable and unrewarding venture. Anonymous is a collection of global …
The jokes about a politician named Weiner Tweeting pics of his package all over cyberspace practically write themselves, and, yeah, it’s funny as hell. The underlying issue of the Weiner fiasco is not so funny, however.
Perhaps the biggest (I’m sorry, the puns are just unavoidable here, so bare bear with me) argument in favor of Weiner’s actions going beyond jerking off to Playboy pictorials is exemplified by his initial …
Lara Logan, a news correspondent for CBS, was beaten savagely and sexually assaulted while covering the recent chaos in Egypt. Basically, Logan was separated from her camera crew and security staff in the near-mob conditions at Tahrir Square following the resignation of Hosni Mubarak and was brutalized in plain sight among rioters before being assisted by Egyptian soldiers and a group of women.
Wow. This is a terrible, terrible story on hundreds of different levels.
Perhaps the most disturbing repercussion, though, involves the petty, mean-spirited, and completely inappropriate internet battles that are turning both a nation’s upheaval and a woman’s private pain into immature, insensitive interwebs spats.
From AOL News, which recently highlighted three of these disturbing pissing contests:
1. NPR readers versus NPR readers
Reader discussion became so brutal on NPR that the Two-Way …
Wired.com released an interesting article on modern technology’s affect on prostitutes in New York City. The article discussed the move of prostitution from the streets to an ‘indoor’ business model, where pimps are becoming less prevalent, and agencies and self starters are more common.
The author, Sudhir Venkatesh, explains further:
The economies of big cities have been reshaped by a demand for high-end entertainment, cuisine, and “wellness” goods. In the process, “dating,” “massage,” “escort,” and “dancing” have replaced hustling and streetwalking. A luxury brand has been born.
These changes have made sex for hire more expensive. But luxe pricing has in turn helped make prostitution, well… somewhat respectable. Whereas men once looked for a secretive tryst, now they seek a mistress with no strings attached, a “girlfriend experience,” and they are willing to pay top dollar for it.