Jump to content

Anonymous Plans to kill Facebook.


Recommended Posts

"Why The Anonymous Facebook 'Plot' Was A Dud"

Yesterday a number of media outlets breathlessly reported that Anonymous, a collective identity for online hacktivists, trolls and other cyber punks, planned to "kill" Facebook.

CNN reported that a YouTube video, complete with dramatic intro music and computerized, Stephen-Hawking style narration had started widely-circulating this week, saying Facebook would "be destroyed" on Nov. 5. This is the date Britons celebrate Guy Fawkes, a revolutionary who tried to blow up Parliament more than 400 years ago, made infinitely more famous by the film "V or Vendetta."

Gawker's Adrian Chen gives a decent explanation of why this was, in fact, "a terrible misunderstanding." It wasn't just that "OpFacebook" was a hoax, as key Anonymous organizers have suggested. A few supporters of Anonymous had actually collaborated earlier this year on a operation aimed at taking Facebook offline, and bringing attention to the way Facebook used people's private data for commercial gain.

Back on July 1 there was indeed a channel on the main chat network for Anonymous called #OpFacebook, in which about two dozen supporters were discussing an attack to disrupt the site on July 4. A few in the room were there largely as hangers on. I checked it out at the time, not expecting too much. "Oooo I wanna hack something lol," one chat room participant said. When I asked another if they had ever hacked something before, they replied, "I'm here to learn."

Someone was doing something though. A Twitter account, @OP_Facebook, had been set up and on July 16 it tweeted a link to the now infamous YouTube video. A few more worked collaboratively on a lengthy, official statement on the online text application PiratePad, about how this was "not a battle over the future of privacy and publicity. It is a battle for choice and informed consent."

When the crowd-sourced document mentioned the date July 4, someone had added in parenthesis, "Guys, we are running out of time, we need a new date." When that date finally arrived, nothing happened.

Gawker reports that OpFacebook's original participants eventually got bored and left, but that soon enough, other people on the chat network stumbled upon the room they'd left empty, save for a link to their PiratePad statement. They picked up the cause, using Nov. 5 as the new planned date of attack. With the drip feed, then rush of media attention, the OpFacebook chat room is now booming with hundreds of new participants, increasing the likelihood there really could be some kind of attack on Facebook after all.

One reason the original, July gathering for OpFacebook came about may have been the momentum created by Anonymous splinter group LulzSec, which had disbanded in late June. But why did this muddled cyber assault re-emerge in August? According to one source and long-time supporter of Anonymous, new folks who jumped into OpFacebook were almost certainly among the flood of kids who visit 4chan, widely seen as the home of Anonymous, every summer, itching to join a cyber attack.

"Every year a bunch of irritating kids migrate from Tumblr, Twitter, eBaums or whatever's trendy that summer, to 4Chan," the source said. "From there they discover the IRCs. Every bloody year they notice how effective Anonymous can be and they want a piece of the action, but rather than doing the right thing and becoming an effective cog in the machine, they want the glory."

So-called Anons on 4chan tend to have a strong sense of homogeneity, rejecting notions of age, gender and race and calling one another /b/rothers. The newbies are quickly sniffed out, though, because of their awkward use of 4chan lingo, or for balking at the tasteless language, jokes and images.

They are then categorized, in 4chan's coarse parlance, as summerfags. "The yearly migration happens without fail - ironic, considering the fail they bring with them," the Anonymous supporter said. "I couldn't explain why it happens in the summer beyond the fact that kids have summer off school." What tends to happen is the visitors rush to 4chan's random board, known as /b/, a source of discussion about Anonymous attacks, along with memes, porn, gore and shock images.

"Summerfags always want to get involved with a big op, they wish they could have been there for Scientology etc. but they weren't. When they realize that despite it's reputation for swift, ruthless action, Anon can be pretty slow on a day-to-day basis, they try to start their own ops." But without the backing of long-time Anonymous figures, such as those who run its most popular Twitter feeds or operate the IRC channels, and who may also have the technical know-how to hack websites, these smaller ops tend to flop. "Long story short, they watch V for Vendetta, and then fag the whole place up with their relentless goomb."

So next time you hear about a looming cyber attack by Anonymous, stay calm. Bear in mind that pretty much anyone can front a well-made YouTube video and think twice about whether this is all just a bit of fun for a few bored people on their summer break.


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
Back to top
  • Create New...

Important Information

This site uses cookies - We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.