Thursday, January 26, 2012

Chronicles of the Anonymous: The SOPA episode

…and piss off those hackers they did. These U.S. congressmen didn’t seriously think that Anonymous would let this one by so easily, did they?

SOPA or the Stop Online Piracy Act, and its Senate counterpart PIPA or the Protect Intellectual Property Act, have been the trending topic among netizens of late. Labeled by an overwhelming majority of net users as the “kill-the-internet” bill, its popularity or more appropriately-infamy- have driven the erstwhile politically apathetic global internet community to action. As succinctly put by this graph:

This would have been funny. Except that it wasn’t the least bit amusing for our hacktivists, the Anonymous. Of course, the non-hacktivists staged their own protests to the Bill. Wikipedia (to the chagrin of students worldwide) conducted a blackout-calling on the world to imagine a future without free knowledge. An estimated 7,000 other smaller websites followed suit- either through blackouts or posting protest messages on their pages.

How did Anonymous protest?

As one website puts it “Federal agents executed a crackdown on the files sharing website Megaupload on Thursday. The response, you could say, was not minor.” The entire article can be read here.

Almost immediately after feds shut down the immensely popular website, the biggest internet attack by the hacktivist collective was launched. First to fall was the U.S. Justice Department’s website. Others soon followed like the FBI, SOPA supporters such as the Universal Music Group, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), and Broadcast Music, Inc.

What exactly was it about SOPA that drove Anonymous, and the entire internet community, up in arms?

to be continued..

Nathan J. Marasigan, Entry No. 6

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