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Jake Davis aka Topiary from Lulzsec

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Jake Davis was introduced to Anonymous and Lulzsec whilst he was living in the Shetland Islands. He was faced with the possibility of something like crochet or knitting as a hobby but instead decided to pursue a humanitarian path and work for justice and the lulz.

There were thousands of followers and people in chat rooms, although some chat was restricted to just a few members some of whom were later arrested and their identities revealed. Ryan Cleary, from Essex UK was “Viral”; Jake Davis, from Shetland Islands known as “Topiary”; Mustafa Al-Bassam, from London UK, was “Tflow”; Ryan Ackroyd from Yorkshire UK, was “Kayla” (pretended to be a girl from USA). Their leader was “Sabu”, aka Hector Xavier Monsegur, a Puerto Rican programmer.
Many Anons are against Sabu as they believe he should not have helped expose other people leading to their arrests. However, none of the known Lulzsec members who were arrested knowingly hold any grudges against Sabu, they probably realise that he was faced with a stark choice of help expose or face further persecution towards himself and his family.

File:Jake Davis Sitting.jpg - Wikimedia CommonsJake Davis upon arrest was escorted from the Shetland Islands to London where he faced interrogation and then eventual prison. In prison he was treated like a god, one inmate saying that he a hacker and if anyone messes with him that he would destroy them online messing up their banks and mortgages etc.

Upon release from incarceration, Jake was not allowed to use the internet and had problems of finding his way around London (at the time an unknown city to him) without the aid of internet maps, sometimes running frantically to get home as he was on a curfew via a tag (system used to monitor whereabouts)

Jake has pursued a career in cyber security and also helped assist the Lauri Love campaign. He is also an animal lover, feeding a wild / tame squirrel who pops into his home in London. Further reading here: Confident squirrel pops by animal lover’s home for dinner every day | Metro News

Below is a copy of #FreeTopiary from freetopiary.com (website no longer exists and domain is now owned by a domain investment company) 

Jake Davis aka Topiary was arrested on the Shetland Islands on July 27 2011.

On July 31, 2011 he was charged with five offences including unauthorised computer access and conspiracy to carry out a distributed denial of service attack on the Serious Organised Crime Agency’s website.

Following his court appearance, Anonymous issued the following press release:

On an historical day of the days of the great Anonymous… the Simple Prankster Turned Swank Garden Hedge – Topiary (may theLulz bless his soul) has been vanned in a moment of truthfulness, for he made his word truthful to his actions.

Thus, he joined the magnificent procession of the Anons that has been extended with the great leaders, loyal soldiers, and honourable knights.

He refused to accept vice in exchange for his lulz, or to submit and be humiliated by the misguided and the receivers of the wrath of Sec, who have been stricken by disgrace and misery. Topiary faced the lulz with lulz, force with force, and accepted to challenge the supercilious throngs that came out arrogantly and ostentatiously with their machinery, gear, d0x, and lack of humor.

Despite all this, his determination never wavered and his strength was never weakened; he instead stood up to them, face-to-face like a high mountain. He continued to fight the kind of battles that he was accustomed to… until he received the bullets of Sec and humorlessness to surrender his soul to its Lulz…

After a life full of efforts and diligence, courage and patience, incitement and cyber victory, generosity and charity, expatriation and travels, advice and good planning, wisdom and sophistication, the life of the Garden Hedge came to an end during this specific era.

His blood, words, attitudes, and his ending are to remain a longcat running within the junctions of Anonymous generation after generation.

If Scotland Yard succeeded in vanning Topiary, that is no shame or disgrace. Are not men and heroes killed but on the battlefields? But can the British, with their media, agents, tools, soldiers, and apparatus kill what Topiary lived and was vanned for?

Alas! Topiary did not found an organisation that lives with his life and dies with his death.

We raised his rank as he held high our lulz. We cherished him as he cherished the lulz; and through him, we frightened the totality of the unlulzy parties as Topiary feared only the shears.

If the light of Anonymous and AntiSec could be extinguished with the vanning or death of someone, it would have been already. Alas, it is not so.

We in Anonymous vow to David Davidson the Exalted and seek His support to help us go forward on the path of AntiSec that was trekked by Topiary.

We stress that Topiary’s blood, bless his soul, is more precious to us and to every Anon to go in vain. It will, lulz willing, remain a curse that will chase and haunt Sec and its agents.

Very soon, lulz willing, their joy will turn into mourning and our lulz will be mixed with their tears. We will fulfill Topiary’s maxim, bless his soul: ‘You are free.’

The anons of Anonymous, whether in groups or individually, will not relent, despair, surrender, or weaken and will continue to plan until you are afflicted with a catastrophe that turns your very life into lulz.

We call on our Anons in the UK where Garden Hedge Topiary was vanned to revolt and wash this shame brought upon them by a band of traitors and bandits who sold out to Anonymous’ enemies and disparaged the sentiment of this noble, lulzy people.

We call on Anons to revolt altogether to cleanse the world of the ProSec filth who spread mischief in the land.

The Hedge refused to depart this life before sharing with Anonymous its happiness with the revolutions against injustice and wrongdoers. He, bless his soul, tweeted a message one week before he died, which included guidance that will soon, lulz willing, be disseminated.

His message was this poetic verse: ‘You cannot arrest an idea.’

Topiary – may you fly always over the horizon.

 

About Aaron Swartz

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Aaron Swartz is the founder of Demand Progress, which launched the campaign against the Internet censorship bills (SOPA/PIPA) and now has over a million members. He is also a Contributing Editor to The Baffler and on the Council of Advisors to The Rules.

He is a frequent television commentator and the author of numerous articles on a variety of topics, especially the corrupting influence of big money on institutions including nonprofitsthe mediapolitics, and public opinion. From 2010-11, he researched these topics as a Fellow at the Harvard Ethics Center Lab on Institutional Corruption. He also served on the board of Change Congress, a good government nonprofit. He has also developed the site theinfo.org. His landmark analysis of Wikipedia, Who Writes Wikipedia?, has been widely cited. Working with Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee at MIT, he helped develop and popularize standards for sharing data on the Web. He also coauthored the RSS 1.0 specification, now widely used for publishing news stories.

His piece with photographer Taryn Simon, Image Atlas (2012), is has been featured in the New Museum. In 2007, he led the development of the nonprofit Open Library, an ambitious project to collect information about every book ever published. He also cofounded the online news site Reddit, where he released as free software the web framework he developed, web.py.

(2) Aaron Swartz (@aaronsw) / Twitter

Article from aaronsw.com
Creative Commons — Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International — CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Aarons website – remembrance

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Aaron Swartz is the founder of Demand Progress, which launched the campaign against the Internet censorship bills (SOPA/PIPA) and now has over a million members. He is also a Contributing Editor to The Baffler and on the Council of Advisors to The Rules.

He is a frequent television commentator and the author of numerous articles on a variety of topics, especially the corrupting influence of big money on institutions including nonprofits, the media, politics, and public opinion. From 2010-11, he researched these topics as a Fellow at the Harvard Ethics Center Lab on Institutional Corruption. He also served on the board of Change Congress, a good government nonprofit.

He has also developed the site theinfo.org. His landmark analysis of Wikipedia, Who Writes Wikipedia?, has been widely cited. Working with Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee at MIT, he helped develop and popularize standards for sharing data on the Web. He also coauthored the RSS 1.0 specification, now widely used for publishing news stories.

Server information sidebar: This site is being served from an Ubuntu box with 2GB of RAM. The server is currently provided by several people. Thanks to:
His piece with photographer Taryn Simon, Image Atlas (2012), is has been featured in the New Museum. In 2007, he led the development of the nonprofit Open Library, an ambitious project to collect information about every book ever published. He also cofounded the online news site Reddit, where he released as free software the web framework he developed, web.py.

Aaron Swartz aaronsw.com – website domain registered on 2000-09-29, the site now serves as a remembrance to Aaron and is maintained by several different people.

Creative Commons — Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International — CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

#OpAfrica Nigeria – The Lekki Massacre #OpNigeria

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Anonymous: anonymous guide for internet

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How To Be Completely Anonymous Online VPN Setup Instructions Tutorial Guide Step by Step VirtualBox - YouTubeHow to be 100% anonymous on the internet or as good as it gets.. the guide shows how to be anonymous whilst using the internet but another school of thought is that nothing can be 100% anonymous. This guide helps.

 

Pdf below – this may take a short time to load

anonguide

ANONLAN – an idea

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An Idea

As before, feel free to RT, throw away, ridicule or do whatever you want with it.

http://pastebin.com/ZiUdbgv0

————————————-

An idea

An idea has been in my mind for some time now. Seeing how people are trying to fistfuck the Internet with ACTA, PIPA, SOPA and the like, I feel the urge to express it. It is not a complete solution and it is entierely possible that someone else has had this idea before, but it is a start.

I propose AnoLAN, a software that manages selective and automatic sharing of information through wireless LAN.

In our times wireless LAN has become a very common form of communication, so common in fact that the more densely populated areas of our planet are quickly becoming covered with overlapping wireless networks while a lot of people are carrying mobile phones that are capable of connecting to these networks. With the following set of rules it could be possible to turn these mobile phones into devices capable of automatic and selective information exchange:

1. There is a local drive/folder/file called ShareSpace with a capacity selectable by the user, in which files that shall openly be shared will be placed.
2. Each file placed in ShareSpace must be small enough to be transmitted via wireless LAN within a few seconds (Watergate.txt is ok, JarJars_Adventures_On_Idiot_Island_fullseason1080p.zip is not).
3. For each file in ShareSpace the following information must exist: one or more tags describing its content(i.e. #text, #news, #political, …), a hash of the file (i.e. md5, sha256, …), the date of its placement in ShareSpace and the number of times it has been transmitted.
4. The user is able to enter a list of tags that will be preferred while transmitting and a list of tags that will be blocked.
5. Wireless LAN will be turned on at all times, alternating between offering an unencrypted wireless network and scanning the environment for exactly these networks.
6. Once an open unencrypted network has been found, a point-to-point connection between the offering and the scanning device is established.
7. The two devices exchange complete lists containing the tags present in their respective ShareSpace.
8. Each device chooses a tag from the list of its counterpart at random. Preferred tags and tags that do not yet exist in a devices own ShareSpace have a higher chance of being chosen than any other tag. Blocked tags are never chosen.
9. Each device creates a list of hashes of its own files that match the chosen tag.
10. The two devices exchange their chosen tag along with the list of hashes.
11. Each device starts transmitting files from their own ShareSpace to the other device that match the received tag and do not match any of the listed hashes (i.e. every file that the other wants and doesn’t have already).
12. If the connection does not break down on its own, it is severed after a short period of time (~ a minute).
13. Each device changes its MAC Address to a new random one.
14. Files in ShareSpace that have not finished transferring are deleted.
15. If the capacity of ShareSpace is about be be exceeded, files that have been transferred at least once and have been in ShareSpace for some time (selectable by user) are deleted as well to free up space.
16. Back to 5.

This could be implemented for stationary devices with a bigger capacity as well, allowing them to exchange information with mobile phones or even other stationary devices if the grid grows dense enough.

Cons:
-Worms, Trojans, Virii and Spam will bloom like flowers in spring.
-You can easily misuse tags and file childpr0n under #governmentleaks
-Traps are easily laid. Imagine a siren going off if an AnoLAN instance is identified within a public building.
-Will only work in areas with a dense enough population.

Pros:
-You are your own provider.
-No censorship apart from the user choosing to not receive files with certain tags.
-Tracing files back to their origin is nearly impossible.

My hope is that this idea will be discussed, improved upon and maybe even implemented by people that have more time and skill at their hands than I do. For the future of free information.

Page 3 | Royalty-free network server photos free download | Pxfuel

From pastebin, December 2012
http://pastebin.com/ZiUdbgv0

Julian Assange supporters rally to defeat extradition to United States

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Free Julian Assange graffiti in London March 2020

Free Julian Assange graffiti in London March 2020 – Photo courtesy Flickr user Duncan C (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Time is fast running out to get justice for Julian Assange. The court hearing for his extradition to the United States continues in earnest on 7 September 2020 in the United Kingdom. The ongoing campaign to free the Wikileaks founder has ramped up in recent weeks.

Wikileaks was launched in 2006. It has published leaked and classified information from the U.S. government and other sources. Major instances include the Afghanistan and Iraq War Logs, and Cablegate. Assange collaborated with US Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning on these leaks.

Eight years ago Assange sought asylum in the Ecuadorian embassy in London, and was imprisoined in the United Kingdom’s Belmarsh Prison for breaching bail. The extradition case relates to indictments for conspiracy to commit computer intrusion and espionage. He has been accused by the American government of putting lives at risk.

One hundred and sixty-nine journalists and academics recently sent a letter to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson calling on him to bring an end to the proceeding. It followed a fresh US extradition request with amended charges:

The extradition to the US of a publisher and journalist, for engaging in journalistic activities while in Europe, would set a very dangerous precedent.

The Official Australian Website in Support of Julian Assange has published an interview with Andrew Fowler, Aussie investigative journalist and foreign correspondent. He raised concerns about Assange’s health:

It seems quite clear that there is an attempt by the British and US administrations to destroy Assange, either driving him to suicide or a psychological breakdown.

[…] The ultimate purpose of Assange’s treatment is a warning to others. Particularly other journalists. It’s the modern day equivalent of crucifixion, putting heads of enemies on spikes, or public hangings.

Many see this as a ‘show trial’, including the World Socialist Web Site. After the last hearing in mid-August, it argued:

[…] the US government has been building its extradition case and expanding the scope of its vendetta against all those who have helped WikiLeaks bring the truth to the people of the world.

The WSWS also called out the mainstream media for its inaction:

It is significant that not a single major news organization in the US even bothered to report the hearing yesterday.

In a recent post at OffGuardian, Binoy Kampmark attacked the British legal system for their treatment of Assange:

What awaits Assange next month promises to be resoundingly ugly. He will have to ready himself for more pain, applied by Judge Vanessa Baraitser. Throughout her steering of proceedings, Baraitser has remained chillingly indifferent to Assange’s needs, a model of considered cruelty.

Supporters can take their pick of a number of petitions that have been circulating online for some time. Amnesty International has one:

Brisbane Assange Action Queensland has been promoting a campaign to involve Australian parliamentarians, believing it’s not too late to lobby them:

The UK-based Don’t Extradite Assange Campaign has an extensive collection of materials and videos and their own petition. They have an detailed document canvassing the issues here.

Australian Phillip Adams has a petition with over 500,000 signatures so far. He also has an updated list of protests. Australian rallies include Darwin, Sydney, Brisbane and Hobart. Among the protests planned internationally are Mexico City, Hamburg and San Francisco:

Sputnik News interviewed Juan Passarelli, director of the new documentary The War on Journalism: The Case of Julian Assange. He worked with Wikileaks for ten years.

There is an increasingly dangerous authoritarianism growing in the West, where people are being surveilled to a much greater extent than than the Germany Stazi ever was able to achieve, because of our digital spying apparatuses that we have in our pockets called smartphones.

Julian’s partner Stella Morris is raising money to fund his defence. Her CrowdJustice page has the latest update:

The outcome of this case has huge repercussions for press freedom. It is the first time a publisher has been charged under the Espionage Act. It would be the first time any foreign journalist is prosecuted and extradited to the US for publishing truths they didn’t like.

Guatemalan lawyer Renata Avila (a member of the Global Voices community) shared her concerns:

Assange campaigner Monique Jolie tweeted this plea to Australians:

We can certainly expect #FreeJulianAssange and #BringAssangeHome to be trending on social media during the court hearing, which could take a long as four weeks.

Article licenced under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ Source: globalvoices.org

Wikileaks, hacktivist supporters imprisoned

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Today WikiLeaks is a political fixture. It publishes anonymously submitted documents, some of genuine historical importance, and coordinates international media partnerships around the same. It has a notably robust attitude to censorship and has resisted numerous demands to withhold material involving powerful political, commercial, and bureaucratic entities. The organization also plays an outsized role in the political imaginary of those who worry about how the advent of social media is changing the business of representative democracy (1).

This all felt very novel in 2010. Over the course of that year, WikiLeaks worked through a series of publications of epochal importance disclosed by former US Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning. Prime among these documents was a large collection of incident reports from the American wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, video footage from a helicopter gunship showing the killing of Iraqi civilians and two Reuters journalists by US military personnel in July 2007 and, of course, a comprehensive collection of US State Department cables touching on relations with practically every country in the world.

The import of Manning’s disclosures is no doubt discussed in detail elsewhere in this volume. Given that they served as one of the triggers for the series of revolutions and grass-roots democratic movements that swept the world in 2011–12, it is hard to imagine a set of public interest disclosures achieving a wider resonance or provoking social change on a larger scale. Freely available to the public in a searchable online archive, these documents continue to serve as an important resource for journalists and researchers, as is clear from the regularity with which they are still referenced in news reporting.

During Manning’s court-martial in 2013, it emerged that she had approached a series of prominent media organizations, including the New York Times and the Washington Post, before going to WikiLeaks. The significance of WikiLeaks is amply demonstrated by the fact that, without it, Manning’s revelations would likely never have seen the light of day. The same is surely true of much of the series of publications that have followed since, an impressive group of revelations with particular strengths in diplomacy and the mechanics of public and private sector surveillance.

Without wanting to take anything away from those later releases, when considering the significance of WikiLeaks as a political project, it is 2010 that I find myself returning to. It was a moment when technological innovation, intellectual heft, and bullish public presentation combined to produce a dynamic that was profoundly exciting (2). WikiLeaks in 2010–11 was iconoclastic and engaging. Unlike most phenomena that can be described that way, it was also engaged in work that was profoundly important. An unusual and dangerous combination of traits—one which is liable to inspire others.

As the impact of Manning’s revelations cascaded around the globe, occasioning major power shifts that would otherwise have seemed unrealizable, it felt like there was a lifting of the veil about what kind of change could be contemplated in a post-crash world that was badly in need of a reset. Better still, in WikiLeaks it looked like there was an entity that had both the ability and the commitment to amplify the actions of gratuitously courageous individuals and generate the necessary demonstration effects.

When, at her court-martial in 2013, Manning made a statement taking responsibility for her actions, she also posed a rhetorical question.“How could I, a junior analyst, possibly believe I could change the world for the better?” Those words carried a particularly heavy weight, it being obvious to anyone not wearing a uniform that changing the world for the better is precisely what Chelsea had managed to do. How could we dare to hope that such a thing was feasible?

Julian Assange’s great contribution to the world is that he made the kind of heroism articulated and enacted by Chelsea Manning possible. Still more than this, he did so by design. Informed by a particular intellectual tradition, but with a degree of originality, Assange formulated a theory about how a particular aspect of the world worked and how it might be disrupted (3). These ideas about the durability of closed bureaucratic structures were set out on paper and are available to read today (4). When they were given organizational form and put into action, Assange did indeed change the world—by enabling others to do so—in broadly the way he envisioned.

This is a significant achievement and one that is worthy of recognition and respect. That respect should not be interpreted as some kind of blank check that exempts the bearer from criticism. Still less is it a claim for unquestioning obedience. Still, there is a kind of duty that pertains not to let the author of that achievement go down without a fight. This would, I think, hold true even if the wider implications of a criminal prosecution of Assange or other WikiLeaks staff for their publishing activities weren’t so utterly dire.

Back in 2010–11, again, this all seemed pretty commonly understood. Not only was there a large degree of consensus, people went to some effort to make the point—some to the extent that they put themselves at risk in the process. By enabling whistleblowers to generate impact on a huge scale, WikiLeaks also created a sense of opportunity that motivated action among a far wider circle. The momentum generated by WikiLeaks produced multiple waves of activism with different focuses and repertoires.

Enthusiasm arose, boundless, and loyalty did not need to be demanded. The activism around and provoked by WikiLeaks took a number of forms. Firstly, WikiLeaks clearly provided the inspiration for further disclosures—the line from Chelsea Manning to Edward Snowden, Antoine Deltour, and others is obvious (5) —and this included the development of a phenomenon Biella Coleman has called the Public Interest Hack (6). Some of these disclosures were in due course released and preserved for the record by WikiLeaks—an act of tremendous value—but others were not. While the catalyzing force of WikiLeaks should not be underestimated, the ecosystem of leaks was always bigger than WikiLeaks itself, something that has become more obvious as time has gone on, particularly in langages other than English (7).

Others set up tools to broaden the use of anonymous disclosure. Regional leaking sites proliferated after 2010, though not many of these have survived to the present day. However, SecureDrop and GlobaLeaks systems are now used by a host of media organizations, civil society, and even government agencies to enable them to receive anonymous reports. WikiLeaks pioneered the use of this technology and that it continues to evolve and develop in several different incarnations is testament to the strength of that original vision.

Beyond the origination of public interest information, groups emerged for the purpose of analyzing liberated data. Impromptu discussions on social media or supporter forums coexisted with more dedicated structures. Prominent among these was Project PM, whose concerns about the political economy of surveillance pre-empted many of the current debates around platform capitalism and the power of the big internet companies. Other WikiLeaks-inspired activist projects were intended to improve the accessibility of published data, sometimes to the extent of providing new search interfaces that improved on those WikiLeaks had produced themselves. Then there were independent surveys of news reflected from and refracted through WikiLeaks publications.

The WL Central website, which launched at around the same time as the first of the State Department cables was released, was one of many that published supporter-driven articles on WikiLeaks and its publications. As time went on it also became one of the better sources for information on the wave of demonstrations that followed in Cablegate’s wake.

In addition to all this was the explicit activism in defense of WikiLeaks. Late 2010 saw the start of an informal payment blockade as major payment providers were prevailed upon to stop servicing WikiLeaks. In response, Paypal and other sites were targeted by a series of digital sit-ins. The selective and heavy-handed criminal prosecution of the #PayPal14 was just one of many (8).

With the experience of 2010–2011 in mind, some of what is happening today should not be unduly surprising. Concerns about a possible US criminal investigation were high at the time. Critics tended to argue not that a US prosecution would not be deeply problematic, but rather that it was not likely to materialize or that, at any rate, the US threat should not be linked to the European Arrest Warrant issued against Assange by a Swedish prosecutor in late 2010 (9).

Chelsea Manning was arrested in May 2010. Throughout the second half of that year, at Camp Arifjan in Kuwait and later the Quantico Marine brig in Virginia, she experienced treatment that was later condemned by the UN special rapporteur on torture. At the time, nobody knew.

Information about the circumstances of Manning’s detention was only released to the outside world in the last days of December 2010, with some effort. Manning served almost seven years of a 35-year prison sentence for her whistleblowing, in difficult circumstances, before having that “clearly disproportionate” sentence commuted by Barack Obama in one of his last acts in office.

As I write this, Chelsea Manning has again been remanded to solitary confinement in jail after refusing to co-operate with secret grand jury proceedings in the Eastern District of Virginia. The grand jury appears to be a renewed attempt to bring a criminal prosecution against Julian Assange,the same process that was initiated in 2010 and rolled over several times since, now being pursued by renewed vigor under a US administration with few qualms about media freedom.

What, from the high point of 2010–12, is surprising is that now that the threat is undeniable, how subdued the reaction to it is. It would be a mistake to attribute this entirely to negative press coverage, still less secret machinations by shadowy elites. In part, it’s a product of a gradual attrition of faith in and goodwill toward WikiLeaks, which has been compounded by an utterly self-defeating refusal to acknowledge that this could conceivably be a bit of a problem.

What is particularly striking is not that there might be hostility from some of those who used to care the most—it’s that so many have made the journey through disappointment and anger into the realms of utter disengagement. From many quarters that cared deeply—and maybe still do—there is silence. There is no point denying that support for WikiLeaks at this juncture carries with it a certain amount of baggage, not least an unhealthy proximity to unlovely fellow-travelers on the American far right. This is a red line for many, and understandably so. A diminishing number of social media disciples reciting catechism at user accounts who have had the temerity to draw impermissible interpretations from commonly understood facts is also a tragedy of sorts. It’s certainly a strange place for a discursive revolution to find itself in.

Unfortunately, while the clarity and the sense of possibility of 2010–11 may have dissipated, the threats we were all concerned about then have not. A US prosecution of Julian Assange and other WikiLeaks staff for publishing classified information remains a profoundly dangerous prospect. Many of the advances made since 2010 are potentially under threat.

Computer crimes laws should not be used to stifle public interest speech. Extradition proceedings should not be used for political purposes. Large-scale leaks have proven an invaluable tool for social change. Anonymous disclosure is important and any motivation behind the submission of that information is secondary to its public interest value.

The threats are real and many of the arguments are not being made effectively, or at all. A lot has happened since 2010 and I appreciate the difficulty this accumulated baggage presents for many good and principled people. Most of those I have had the privilege to work with since then have a clear idea of what inspired them and the values they hold dear, not to mention the importance of Assange’s contribution to realizing both. If the evident injustice of Chelsea Manning’s re-imprisonment is to have any positive impact, maybe her courage and clear-mindedness can help those who have held back until now to navigate through this difficult and dangerous terrain and tell their truth.

Naomi Colvin, march 2019

(1) In the wake of surprise polling results on both sides of the Atlantic in 2016, many have sought to identify external actors who can be held responsible. While the possible use of anonymous leaking platforms by motivated actors including nation-states is an issue that deserves serious discussion substantial analyses of online information flows around the US presidential election emphasize the rôle of long-standing domestic dynamics. See e.g., Benkler, Faris & Roberts (2018), Network Propaganda

(2) A taste of this can be obtained from the Twitter archive of those years: https://wlcentral.org/twitter-archive.

(3) The intellectual setting for WikiLeaks and many of its founder’s perennial concerns is discussed in Cypherpunks, also published by OR Books, portions of which are excerpted in an earlier section of this collection.

(4) See CRYPTOME, July 31, 2010, http://cryptome.org/0002/ja-conspiracies.pdf.

(5) Though not the focus of this essay, this sequence of disclosures has clearly informed developments in the field of whistleblower protection—not least inthe recognition of the importance of privacy enhancing technologies. The whistleblower directive currently being negotiated by the EU institutions owes much to the examples of Manning, Snowden, and especially Deltour. As such, it simply would not have happened without Assange.

(6) Gabriella Coleman, “The Public Interest Hack,” limn, https://limn.it/articles/the-public-interest-hack/

(7) The patchiness of preservation efforts for those disclosures not published by WikiLeaks has posed difficulties for researchers. Initiatives to collate and preserve these varied archives are to be welcomed See e.g., DDoSecrets.com

(8) Those currently incarcerated for their support of WikiLeaks or alleged involvement in disclosures later published by WikiLeaks include Jeremy Hammond (https://freejeremy.net), Matt DeHart (https://mattdehart.com), Justin Liverman, Kane Gamble and, of course, Chelsea Manning (https://xychelsea.is).

(9) Assange’s battle against extradition to Sweden to face questioning on sexual assault allegations wound its way through the UK courts and was only interrupted by Ecuador’s grant of asylum to defend against a US prosecution in 2012. After several years of standoff and shortly before the statute of limitations on the one remaining allegation expired, the investigation was dropped in a way that was unsatisfactory to all sides. A large amount of WikiLeaks’ early reputational capital was expended around the Swedish matter, though many forget that as a result of that case, UK law was changed in 2014 and it would likely not be possible for a similar EAW to be issued today.

Greetings NATO, Transparency is TRUTH

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Greetings, members of NATO.

We are Anonymous.

In a recent publication, you called Anonymous a threat. You alleged that secrecy is a necessary evil, and that transparency is not always the right way forward.

Anonymous disagrees.

Anonymous is not a threat to the people. Anonymous is the people.

Anonymous would like to remind you that the government and the people are distinct entities, with more and more frequently conflicting goals and desires. It is Anonymous’ position that, when there is a conflict of interest between the government and the people, it is the people’s will which must take priority.

We do not wish to threaten anybody’s way of life. We do not wish to dictate anything to anybody. We do not wish to terrorize any nation. We merely wish to remove power from vested interests and return it to the people – from whom, in a democracy, it should never have been taken in the first place.

TRANSPARENCY IS TRUTH

Allow us to explain the obvious to you.

Transparency poses no threat to honest government; it only ever restrains government’s ability to act in a manner with which the people would disagree. Transparency allows democratic consequences and accountability. Transparency is not a luxury; it is the foundation of democracy.

Anonymous does not accept that any government or military has the right to be above its own law. Whether HBGary were acting in the cause of security or military gain is irrelevant: their actions were illegal and morally reprehensible.

We are offended by the use of phoney clichés, like “in the interests of national security,” used to justify illegal and deceptive activities. If a government must break the rules, it must also be willing to accept at the ballot box the democratic consequences of doing so.

It is unacceptable to have a situation in which the people are, in many cases, totally and utterly unaware of what is being said and done in their names.

This is why we hack: we hack because you lie.

ANONYMOUS AND WIKILEAKS

Anonymous and Wikileaks are separate entities. The actions of Anonymous were not aided or even requested by WikiLeaks. However, Anonymous and WikiLeaks do share one common attribute: neither is a threat to any organization… unless that organization has something to hide.

If governments were doing nothing underhand or illegal, there would be nothing “embarassing” about Wikileaks’ revelations, nor would there have been any scandal emanating from HBGary. The resulting scandals were not a result of Anonymous’ or Wikileaks’ revelations, they were the result of the CONTENT of those revelations.

Responsibility for that content can be laid solely at the doorstep of policymakers who, like all corrupt entities, naively believed that they were above the law and that they would not be caught lying, stealing, murdering.

Much government and corporate comment has been dedicated to avoiding similar leaks in the future. Advice ranges from better security to lower levels of clearance, from harsher penalties for whistleblowers to censorship of the press. Anonymous finds it quite telling that not a one of these entities is discussing ways to stop their illegal, immoral activities.

WE ARE LEGION

Anonymous has proven over the last several years that an old-world hierarchy is not necessary to achieve great progress.

Anonymous is not an organization as you understand the word; Anonymous is a vast, amorphic, leaderless movement that exists everywhere and nowhere. Anonymous is an emotion. It is both a refusal and an affirmation. It has no center, no top, no leadership.

Anonymous is unlike any organization you can fathom, and as long as you continue to be evil you can neither cage nor defeat it.

You and everything you stand for have, by the changing tides and the advancement of technology, become obsolete. Your only chance of defeating the movement which binds all of us is to accept it. This is no longer your world. It is our world – the people’s world. And we will have it back.

We are Anonymous.
We are legion.
We do not forgive.
We do not forget.
Expect us…

NATO, Wikileaks & Governments

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Greetings, members of NATO. We are Anonymous.

In a recent publication, you have singled out Anonymous as a threat to “government and the people”. You have also alleged that secrecy is a ‘necessary evil’ and that transparency is npt always the right way forward.

Anonymous would like to remind you that the government and the people are, contrary to the supposed foundations of “democracy”, distinct entities with often conflicting goals and desires. It is Anonymous’ position that when there is a conflict of interest between the government and the people, it is the people’s will which must take priority. The only threat transparency poses to government is to threaten government’s ability to act in a manner which the people would disagree with, without having to face democratic consequences and accountability for such behaviour. Your own report cites a perfect example of this, the Anonymous attack on HBGary. Whether HBGary were acting in the cause of security or military gain is irrelevant – their actions were illegal and morally reprehensible. Anonymous does not accept that the government and/or the military has the right to be above the law and to use the phoney cliche of “national security” to justify illegal and deceptive activities. If the government must break the rules, they must also be willing to accept the democratic consequences of this at the ballot box.We do not accept the current status quo whereby a government can tell one story to the people and another in private. Dishonesty and secrecy totally undermine the concept of self rule. How can the people judge for whom to vote unless they are fully aware of what policies said politicians are actually pursuing?

When a government is elected, it is said to “represent” the nation it governs. This essentially means that the actions of a government are not the actions of the people in government, but are actions taken on behalf of every citizen in that country. It is unacceptable to have a situation in which the people are, in many cases, totally and utterly unaware of what is being said and done on their behalf – behind closed doors.

Anonymous and WikiLeaks are distinct entities. The actions of Anonymous were not aided or even requested by WikiLeaks. However, Anonymous and WikiLeaks do share one common attribute: They are no threat to any organization – unless that organization is doing something wrong and attempting to get away with it.

We do not wish to threaten anybody’s way of life. We do not wish to dictate anything to anybody. We do not wish to terrorize any nation.

We merely wish to remove power from vested interests and return it to the people – who, in a democracy, it should never have been taken from in the first place.
The government makes the law. This does not give them the right to break it. If the government was doing nothing underhand or illegal, there would be nothing “embarassing” about Wikileaks revelations, nor would there have been any scandal emanating from HBGary. The resulting scandals were not a result of Anonymous’ or Wikileaks’ revelations, they were the result of the CONTENT of those revelations. And responsibility for that content can be laid solely at the doorstep of policymakers who, like any corrupt entity, naively believed that they were above the law and that they would not be caught.

A lot of government and corporate comment has been dedicated to “how we can avoid a similar leak in the future”. Such advice ranges from better security, to lower levels of clearance, from harsher penalties for whistleblowers, to censorship of the press.

Our message is simple: Do not lie to the people and you won’t have to worry about your lies being exposed. Do not make corrupt deals and you won’t have to worry about your corruption being laid bare. Do not break the rules and you won’t have to worry about getting in trouble for it.

Do not attempt to repair your two faces by concealing one of them. Instead, try having only one face – an honest, open and democratic one.

You know you do not fear us because we are a threat to society. You fear us because we are a threat to the established hierarchy. Anonymous has proven over the last several years that a hierarchy is not necessary in order to achieve great progress – perhaps what you truly fear in us, is the realization of your own irrelevance in an age which has outgrown its reliance on you. Your true terror is not in a collective of activists, but in the fact that you and everything you stand for have, by the changing tides and the advancement of technology, are now surplus to requirements.

Finally, do not make the mistake of challenging Anonymous. Do not make the mistake of believing you can behead a headless snake. If you slice off one head of Hydra, ten more heads will grow in its place. If you cut down one Anon, ten more will join us purely out of anger at your trampling of dissent.

Your only chance of defeating the movement which binds all of us is to accept it. This is no longer your world. It is our world – the people’s world.

We are Anonymous.
We are legion.
We do not forgive.
We do not forget.
Expect us…