DIGITAL VIGILANTES

Digital Vigilantes
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DIGITAL VIGILANTES



Written by Jonasz
18 Monday 18th October 2010

Remember when in the medieval times some guys were gathering to recover the Holy Land from the Muslims? When they organised the whole crusade and were fighting in the name of Christianity? Well, as you may have already noticed, the times have changed and people don't fight so often... but they still organise crusades. Via Internet. And we don't call them crusaders – we call them online vigilantes.

Recently, a group known as Beandog gang came up with the idea that they want to prank Tea Party. They had a simple plan – they wanted to verbally assault the party leaders' Twitter accounts, webpages etc. 'All for lulz' – the most common cause in such actions. The thing is, their actions were taken to such an extreme level that the parties' rulers came up with an idea that this whole thing is actually some kind of a planned, prepared action. Finally, the Tea Party accused the Democrats of hiring some 'internet jerks' to assault them. Yeah, a picture of a bear covered in snow shouting 'I fucking love cocaine' on the Tea Party's main page is surely what Democrates want to attain.


As you may suspect, online vigilantes don't like the police and everything that has something to do with law – a bit like Batman, isn't it? That's why when Motion Picture Association of America and the Recording Industry Association of America hired Airplex Software to perform attacks on the famous Pirate Bay, vigilantes decided to retaliate. During the crusade, the main page of one of the objectives revealed  a backup file of the entire website, which contained over 300 megabytes of private company emails. Any idea what they did with such data? Yep, they shared it as a torrent. Online vigilantes have a great sense of irony.

Web vigilantes not always gather for political reasons. Brad Willman wrote a virus back in the early noughties to expose child pornographers, finally netting himself a prominent California judge. These digital vigilantes also established quite a bond with animal lovers. Remember that guy who published a video of himself killing cats? Thanks to jerks who spend half of their lives in front of the computer, he was caught after a few days. There was also a girl who was throwing puppies into the river. Someone found it and submitted it to 4chan – the most jerk-present place on the Internet with a pretty straightforward comment: “Find this dumb little bitch and throw her into a river.” Actually, they pretty much could not fulfill the second part of the assignment (it turned out the “dumb little bitch” was from Serbia), but they got an “A” for the first part. After one day her facebook page and hometown was revealed, after a couple more days the police knocked at her door. Now that's what I call the power of the Internet.

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