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About iDnTyX

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 11/18/1904

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  • [Clan Tag] Clan Name
    UF Ranger
  1. Dislikes: Vehicle Controls, Specifically flying. The delay in identifying friendly's in Hardcore mode. Likes: People go down quicker, Sniping is more accurate, This game will be way better in the new consoles, right now the 12v12 in these big maps are lame. Cant wait for 32v32
  2. Battlefield 3: Close Quarters in June, Battlefield 3: Armored Kill in the fall Battlefield 3: End Game in the winter.
  3. Just a little more zombie killing for me. =)
  4. Like it but too much drama, not enough zombie killing. its like a soap-opera.
  5. lol I hate it to, sometimes I find my self repeating what I say so its like a double echo
  6. Yea I disagree with you too. BF3 though its a respawn it doesnt compare to mwf. The objectives, Maps, the game play its just different IMO. Probably the most Fun 1st person resawn shooter I played. You pretty much had a negative mind set about the game before you even played it and that pretty much sums it up to why you dislike it.
  7. Was sent to my first overseas station base in Turkey.
  8. Part 2of2 This is the second part of a two-part series on Anonymous, the amorphous Internet group that has emerged as a force in global affairs. In the first part, we track Anonymous' transition from pranks to politics. In this installment, we learn about its war on the government. You can read part one of the series here. If Anonymous spans the moral range between the idealistic revolutionary and the nihilistic imp, Phoenix stands all the way at the idealistic end. His base of operations is a network of chat rooms called AnonOps, which birthed many of the overtly political attacks that have made Anonymous a front-page story during the last two years. In the early days, anons were mostly self-proclaimed jerks who joked around on the website 4chan and played mean-spirited pranks on people for the hell of it. But in 2008, a prank on Scientology turned into a semi-serious protest movement, and some anons found themselves taking on the traditional roles of activists -- organizing demonstrations, printing up fliers. By 2010, when Phoenix saw a news program about how anons had tracked down and harassed some woman who'd tossed a kitten into a Dumpster without noticing the overhead surveillance camera, Anonymous had begun to attract people who saw themselves as the good guys. Like many other anons who showed up around then, Phoenix came armed with an arsenal of political opinions. He said he'd been fascinated by politics since he was a kid, having grown up in a country deeply colored by its history of rebellion against the British Empire. All of my conversations with Phoenix took place online, mostly in the AnonOps chat rooms, and we'd speak late at night, usually after he got home from hanging out with his college friends. He said these friends knew nothing of his shadow life in Anonymous, while his friends in Anonymous knew hardly anything about his life outside of it. Anonymous was a kind of utopia, he said, "a complete meritocracy" in which it was "impossible to discriminate against people based on superficial qualities because they don't exist when all you can see are their words." (Click here to view an infographic charting the evolution of 'Anonymous'.) He was a real romantic, and when he talked about the movement you could almost hear echoes of the anti-imperialist oratory of his ancestors. "The fact is that the internet is central to a lot of people's way of life," he said, "and for many Anons, a government attempt to restrict it is literally like an invasion of their territory." Indeed, as he and many others saw it, Anonymous was fighting a "full scale information war" against the government-corporate complex over the future of the Internet. For years, the online world had been their "Wild West," to use one of Phoenix's analogies. The authorities had little power over it, and every dude and lady could write his or her own story: a nerd could reinvent himself as a bully, a chat-room cowboy with unusual sexual proclivities or a sick sense of humor could express himself without fear of social rejection. Then the lawmakers came with their anti-piracy bills -- their SOPAs, their PIPAs -- talking about the need to protect the big entertainment companies from copyright infringement. In the minds of Phoenix and many other anons, this sounded like, "We're going to conquer the Internet and subjugate its inhabitants." Today, the thinking went, the government might be chasing pirates; tomorrow, it might use its expanded powers to silence anyone it didn't like. So Anonymous rose up, and for several months, starting in late 2010, AnonOps had led the insurrection. Phoenix, a talented writer with the aesthetic sensibility of some sort of Internet-rebel troubadour, contributed to the propaganda effort. For those who haven't seen the iconic Anonymous "Message" videos, they tend to feature made-for-Hollywood montages of disturbing imagery -- cops flailing their clubs, cars consumed by fire -- accompanied by a robot voice declaring cyber-war on governments and various other adversaries, typically concluding with some version of the following: "We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us." In a video Phoenix sent me, a sort of AnonOps founding document, the writers had modified the tagline to crystallize the network's mission: "We do not forgive Internet censorship, and we do not forget free speech." PROVING GROUNDS This current fight over Internet censorship dates at least to 2008, when U.S. officials, members of the European Union and a handful of other nations began private negotiations over an international treaty aimed at curbing the spread of piracy. File-sharing had exploded in the previous decade, and the entertainment lobby had long been pressuring the U.S. government to do something about it. According a report by the Record Industry Association of America in 2009, music sales in the U.S. had dropped by almost 50 percent in the decade since the emergence of the file-sharing website Napster. And as of this year, according to the Motion Picture Association of America, piracy costs the U.S. economy more than 300,000 jobs annually, though that seems a little high. The idea behind the treaty, known as the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement or ACTA, was that if the world’s governments could standardize their laws, they’d gain an advantage over the pirates. But the atmosphere of secrecy that surrounded the international talks led many in the tech world, including major players like Google, to charge that the government was more interested in ratcheting up its control of the Internet. (This criticism was more or less echoed during the recent outcry over similar legislation in the U.S. Congress.) Nevertheless, the United States and six other countries have signed the treaty and several others are considering joining them. When an entertainment company suspects a person or website of engaging in piracy, they threaten legal action and demand that the offenders take down the stolen property. Rather then send out these "takedown" notices themselves, they often pass the job on to contractors, some of whom call themselves "web sheriffs," a label that fits in nicely with Phoenix's wild-west metaphor, though the more appropriate comparison might be to the Pinkertons. In 2010, one such contractor, an employee of an Indian company called AiPlex, admitted in an interview that the firm had carried out Anonymous-style Distributed Denial of Service attacks against websites suspected of posting links to pirated material. This admission prompted a rumor that Hollywood companies had essentially ordered the attacks, and although both the MPAA and RIAA denied having done so, the damage had been done. "A wave of rage swept through the Anon community," Phoenix told me, and "a call to arms was quickly established." Anons brought down the websites of AiPlex, the MPAA and the RIAA. Around the same time, they also hacked into several email servers, establishing the three-pronged modus operandi of the escalating war: (1) shut down websites, (2) expose emails (preferably embarrassing ones), (3) LOL. As in the early days of 4chan, the Internet nerd was using the tactics of the jerk against the self-important blowhard, except this time the blowhard was the corporate-state apparatus. But not everyone thought of Anonymous as the good guys, of course, and as the anons waged war, they found themselves struggling to fend off attacks from unknown enemies who kept bringing down the servers that housed their networks. Some anons suspected those web sheriffs and other Internet mercenaries hired by the corporate opposition. (The MPAA and the RIAA both say they had nothing to do with these attacks, either, and stress that if anyone is a threat to free speech, it’s people who do carry out illegal attacks on websites, like anons.) And then came Nov. 28, 2010, the day a hacker-turned-activist named Julian Assange and a shaky alliance of major media companies opened a new front in the information war by publishing a stash of U.S. diplomatic cables leaked to Assange and his website, WikiLeaks. This episode, and a specific sequence of events linked to it, led to what many in Anonymous hailed as the movement’s most glorious moment. The day before those WikiLeaks documents went public, the U.S. State Department wrote a letter to Assange warning that if he allowed their publication he'd be breaking the law and endangering the lives of "countless innocent individuals -- from journalists to human rights activists and bloggers to soldiers to individuals providing information to further peace and security." About a week later, a cohort of financial-services companies announced they would block donations to WikiLeaks, cutting off a vital source of funding. To anons, the whole thing smelled of government meddling. A top executive at PayPal seemed to confirm this when he attributed the company’s decision to the influence of the State Department letter. Another call went out to 4chan, the Anonymous mothership, summoning people to AnonOps for an "epic raid." But when Phoenix left for class that morning, he told me, the chat room for the operation only had about 150 people in it, so when he got home that night he didn't bother going online. Instead he made some toast and marmalade and turned on the news. The top story: a certain shadowy collective of Internet hackers takes down MasterCard and Visa. "I distinctly remember knocking over my glass of water when I heard that," he said. He raced to his computer and was amazed to find that more than 6,000 people had answered the call. Meanwhile, in a house in the Boston suburbs with about five times as many computers as people, Gregg Housh -- former Internet pirate, current unofficial Anonymous media guy -- answered his ringing phone. CNN wanted to know what was going on. Ditto The New York Times. Ditto a couple Indian newspapers. Ditto a seemingly endless parade of other outlets. Anonymous had entered a new phase. It had shown the world that if "you screw with the Internet, the Internet screws with you," Phoenix said. And it had shown itself that the world was paying attention. REVOLUTIONS AND SPIES That winter, several governments made a speciality of screwing with the Internet. One was Tunisia, where the ruling regime had been especially damaged by the WikiLeaks cables. In one particularly vivid dispatch, a diplomat with an eye for irony noted that while ordinary Tunisians struggled to feed their families, the president’s family ate ice cream flown in by private plane from Saint-Tropez. The Tunisian government responded by blocking WikiLeaks, a move that fell considerably short of quelling the anger of an impoverished citizenry already on the verge of revolt. Three weeks later, a 26-year-old fruit vendor set himself on fire in the town center of Sidi Bouzid. By the time the outrage spilled into the streets, some tech-savvy Tunisians had found their way to AnonOps. One woman who described herself as an "observer" of AnonOps wrote to me with an account of what happened next. At first, she wrote, anons concentrated on trying to draw attention to the protests through their connections to the mainstream U.S. media, an endeavor that met with little success. Then the Tunisian government shut down the Internet. "And the people on the Internet sort of waged a shitstorm," she said. Some anons who had never heard of Tunisia began referring to the country's citizens as their brothers. They put together "care packages" in .zip files: software that allowed protesters to circumvent Internet blocks; guides on how to treat broken arms and lost eyes; links that brought protesters into the network, where they could ask for help or post videos of the state police beating and shooting protesters. The observer said the videos deeply disturbed her. "You see a five-year-old old get shot in the head and his neighbor was the one who was recording it," she said. "And his neighbor, a man who watched that kid grow, is the one pleading with you to please help." Watching that kind of violence left her ashamed of humanity, she said, and she'd considered herself hardened to some pretty disgusting things. After all, she said, "I go to 4chan." The excitement of the Arab Spring held the attention of AnonOps through the winter, but the focus widened in February when someone told a reporter that he had infiltrated Anonymous and identified its "leaders." Aaron Barr was the head of HBGary Federal, a new company that specialized in what he called social-media intelligence analysis -- gathering information about people from Facebook and Twitter. A former Navy cryptographer, he had developed a theory that he hoped to exploit in the private sector. He believed that as "threat groups" like the Russian Business Network and al Qaeda attempted to spy on members of the U.S. intelligence community using social media (yes, the CIA is on Facebook), the intelligence community could use such tools to penetrate those threat groups. He intended to sell his services as a consultant to the highest bidder. To make his way into Anonymous, Barr created a social-media avatar named Julian Goodspeak. Enamored of a certain indestructible secret agent with well-defined feelings on martini preparation, Barr says he chose "Goodspeak" because it sounded like a name from a spy novel. "Julian" was a nod to Mr. Assange. Barr insists he spied on Anonymous merely to prove his point about the ease of gathering intelligence about people through social media and never meant to share his information with the authorities. Anons didn't buy it. A small subgroup of hackers snuck into his company's servers and stole some 70,000 emails. They say he got most of his information wrong. He says he accepts that "as a possibility." In any event, they went ahead and posted the entire trove online, along with his address, phone number and other personal information. "We had people driving by my house taking pictures," Barr told me. "A couple people coming up to my door with cameras in their hands. I was seriously, honestly concerned about my family's safety." He left his job ("not in disgrace," he said) and moved his family to another location. Anonymous, meanwhile, pored over the emails and discovered what they believed was some of the most compelling evidence they'd ever seen of governments and corporations colluding to control the flow of online information. In November, their old pal Assange had said he planned to "take down" a major American bank, and two days later, the Bank of America lawyered up, retaining the services of Hunton & Williams, a Washington firm that apparently had some useful connections in the federal government. According to one of the emails exposed by Anonymous, the Justice Department had played matchmaker between the lawyers and the bank. The same email said that the Department had advised the bank to hire Barr's company. (The Justice Department declined to comment.) In another email, anons found a PowerPoint presentation called "The WikiLeaks Threat." As it turned out, Barr's company and two others with similar profiles had pitched Hunton & Williams some ideas on how to handle Assange. In the most widely discussed of the slides, Barr vaguely suggested "disrupting" journalists who support Assange, singling out Glenn Greenwald of Salon. "Without the support of people like Glenn, Wikileaks would fold," he wrote. In another pitch to the law firm, Barr said he'd dug up personal information on employees of left-wing organizations that oppose the Chamber of Commerce, naming the synagogue attended by one of them and identifying some family members of another. He says he did this merely to demonstrate his skill and never imagined the information would go public. But when the organizations found out about it they raised a ruckus, and a group of Democrats in Congress, led by Hank Johnson of Georgia, sent a letter to the Republican heads of four committees asking them to look into "possible illegal actions against citizens engaged in free speech." The Republicans turned them down. Claude Chafin, a spokesperson for the House Armed Services Committee, told me that the matter fell outside the group's jurisdiction; representatives of the other committees have yet to provide an explanation. Barr, for his part, explains their decisions by stressing that he broke no law and never saw a dime of the government's money. When I called Johnson, he said, "It appears that the reason why we're not having any investigations is that that would perhaps anger the people with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and it probably is just something that nobody wants to touch." This fall, I spoke with Barrett Brown, a journalist who followed Anonymous for years before leaping off the perch of reportorial objectivity and into the story. He believes that Barr's emails offer a revelatory glimpse into the murky world of private espionage, a $2 billion industry comprising more than 9,000 companies. After the hack, he set up a website where people could search the emails and report their findings. They didn't find anything illegal, per se, but they did learn of an Air Force plan to manufacture an entire army of Julian Goodspeaks. I spoke to Brown on video chat. He was serious and unsmiling and sounded like a philosophy professor, dropping references to Plato and ninth-century Baghdad. He said he was outraged that the Justice Department appeared to have acted as Bank of America's in-house counsel. "The fact that that happened and won't get a lot outcry shows that the republic is already over," he said. Not that he saw this as such a bad thing, necessarily. A couple years ago, in a blog on The Huffington Post, Brown argued that the rapid spread of the Internet was effectively erasing national boundaries and would soon usher in the dawn of a new era, one in which the people of the world would transfer their allegiances from traditional nation-states to online communities that actually protected their interests. He cited the emergence of Anonymous as a sign of the changing times. "Some people call it the rise of the nerds," he said. For what it was worth, he preferred the term "online actors," which turned out to be a rare area of agreement between him and the authorities. Last spring, in a report on the mounting security challenges of the information age, NATO had named Anonymous as an important new actor on "the international stage." More specifically, it warned that Anonymous might soon develop the capability of breaking into government networks and stealing sensitive documents. Anonymous responded by breaking into NATO's network and stealing sensitive documents. SPLINTERING AND NEW TARGETS The Barr affair had reinfused Anonymous with some of its old lifeblood: the lulz. The way anons saw it, Barr had "poked the bear," and the bear was only too happy to have an opportunity for some good old-fashioned mauling. After stealing his emails and shutting down his website, the hackers wiped his iPad and iPhone, circulated a picture of him dressed up as the Hulk for an evening of trick-or-treating with one of his kids, and somehow broke into his Twitter account, where they looked up Justin Bieber and Hitler and clicked "follow." As they say on the Internet, "Ha ha." For as long as the spotlight had been on AnonOps, the media had largely portrayed Anonymous as well-meaning "hacktivists," but some observers now began to pick up on the notes of malevolent snickering mixed in with the trumpet blasts of idealistic rhetoric. Some of the hackers who had carried out the attack splintered off into their own crew, LulzSec, and in addition to setting their sights on police departments and other familiar foes of the anarchist, they went after seemingly inoffensive companies like Nintendo, and even exposed the names of subscribers to a pornography website. Anons, on the whole, do not disapprove of pornography, but it seems that the "lol" factor, as one member of LulzSec put it to me, was too delicious to resist. "Exposing people's adult activities to the public, and even their families," he said. "What could be better?" The formation of LulzSec coincided with a "civil war" in AnonOps, which broke out when some of the anons who moderated the channels demoted a 19-year-old moderator named Ryan Cleary, the volatile owner of one of the network's key servers. Cleary disconnected the server, throwing the network into chaos. A few months later the London police arrested him for his involvement in attacks against some of the usual anti-piracy foes and Britain's Serious Organized Crime Agency. When they showed up to the house where he lived with his mother, they found tinfoil covering his window. His mother told the press that he hadn't left his room for six months, except to go to the bathroom. During the summer, another fight erupted when a moderator upset several others by talking about his attraction to underage boys. They temporarily banned him from the chat room, and some anons left the network in disgust. They felt it had had betrayed its commitment to free speech. The community was falling apart, destroying itself in a fight over control of the Internet, of all things. A series of arrests had put everyone on edge -- Phoenix said he barely slept for two weeks -- and then a blitz of DDoS attacks from unknown enemies shut down AnonOps for weeks. By the time the network resurfaced in September, months had gone by without a decent raid. The network’s traffic plummeted. On a good night this winter, the most crowded chat room in AnonOps would draw perhaps only 200 people. In its heyday a little over a year ago, an ordinary night drew 30 times that number. Several people complained to me that AnonOps had seen its best days, but when I repeated this to Phoenix, he said he wasn't worried. Anonymous, he said, is like a pool of sulphur boiling under Yellowstone Park. "It lies dormant for weeks," he said. "You know it's done big things in the past, but you can never tell exactly when it will suddenly rise up and unleash a wave of rage." This was three weeks before the Department of Justice bust and the massive attack that followed.
  9. Its a good read if you have time to read it. Part 1 of 2 This article is the first in a two-part series tracing the development of the amorphous online community known as Anonymous, pranksters who have become a force in global affairs. Late in the afternoon of Jan. 19, the U.S. Department of Justice website vanished from the Internet. Anyone attempting to visit it to report a crime or submit a complaint received a message saying the site was unable to load. More websites disappeared in rapid succession. The Recording Industry Association of America. The Motion Picture Association of America. Universal Music. Warner Brothers. The FBI. By nightfall, most of the sites had come back online, but the people responsible for the outages had made their point. They'd landed what they hailed as the biggest blow yet in an escalating war for control of the Internet, and in one of their online command centers, "Phoenix" and his associates were celebrating. Phoenix, a college student, is a member of Anonymous, the loose coalition of hackers, pranksters and other creatures of the Internet who have made headlines over the last 13 months for attacks on the computer systems of a wide range of targets: MasterCard, Visa and PayPal; the San Francisco public transit system; a Texas think tank; Sony; a host of computer-security companies; authoritarian governments in Tunisia and Egypt. (Click here to view an infographic charting the evolution of 'Anonymous'.) Phoenix wouldn't call himself a "member," of course. Much like Occupy Wall Street, a movement with which it has many ties, Anonymous technically has no official membership, hierarchy or specific agenda. Some "anons" do wield more influence than others and the resulting resentments have led to bitter internecine feuds, but its overall lack of an official power structure is essential to its identity and perhaps its survival. As Anonymous put it in a taunting statement to NATO, another recent object of its unfriendly attentions, "You can't cut off the head of a headless snake." The snake seems to have a certain sense of direction, however, as the Jan. 19 attacks suggested. The inciting incident took place earlier that day in the hills outside Auckland, New Zealand, when local police landed two helicopters on the lawn of a man who calls himself Kim Dotcom and owns Megaupload, a hugely popular online service that enables people to share and store movies and other media for free. Authorities shut down the site and arrested Dotcom and six colleagues, accusing them in a 72-page indictment of engaging in acts of "massive worldwide online piracy" that inflicted $500 million in damages on copyright holders while bringing in more than $175 million in profits. The news spread quickly. A message went out on Anonymous Twitter accounts exhorting people to attack the Justice Department and several piracy-fighting trade groups. By clicking on a link, they could launch a page that asked them to identify a target. Thousands typed in the address of the Justice Department site and clicked enter, bombarding it with a fusillade of meaningless commands. Overwhelmed, the site froze and dropped offline. In the chat network where Anonymous coordinated the attacks, the virtual warriors declared victory with a military phrase: "TANGO DOWN." Part war, part game. Given the culture of the Internet, it's reasonable to assume that many of those who responded to Anonymous' call were teenagers. The software used to fire these Internet missiles was the Low Orbit Ion Cannon, a name lifted from the video game "Command & Conquer." Yet the consequences of firing it were real -- a major law enforcement agency's web site was temporarily crippled, leaving the agency to observe that there had been a "degradation in service." Last year, 14 anons were arrested in the United States for using the Ion Cannon to attack PayPal. Some now face the possibility of 15-year prison sentences. Phoenix wasn't around when the Jan. 19 attack went down, but later that night, I found him in an Anonymous chat room and asked him to explain the motivations behind it. "You've heard Anons say before that this is a war," he said. "A full scale information war. That's not mere propaganda, many regard that as a perfectly accurate description. And the stake at play is, simply, 'Who will control access to information? Everyone or a small subset?'" In case it wasn't clear, he then labeled that subset: "The government." THE WAR This struggle for control of the Internet goes back years, but it reached a crescendo just the day before the attack on the Justice Department, when Wikipedia went dark in protest of the Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protect Intellectual Property Act, the controversial anti-piracy bills that were working their way through Congress. Google collected 4.5 million signatures on a petition against the bills. Mozilla redirected traffic from its sites. And thousands of other protesters, from Tumblr and WordPress to Some Guy with a Blog, blacked out their sites, took to the streets and posted messages opposing the legislation, saying it would hurt their business and amounted to censorship. Across the battle lines stood film studios, music labels, pharmaceutical companies and other businesses intent on defending their copyrighted property from illegal sharing at a time when the Internet has made it possible for, say, a digital copy of "V For Vendetta" -- an anon fave and the source of their iconic grinning Guy Fawkes masks -- to travel from an iPad in the United States to a piracy site in Brazil to another viewer's laptop in Korea. These companies have faced a tricky problem: How do you sue a piracy site when it’s based in another country, especially one with looser intellectual-property laws? The bills' answer: You don't. You go after their enablers -- websites that drive traffic to the piracy sites by posting links to them, even if they only do so inadvertently. Critics argued that the cost of getting rid of these links would drive smaller sites out of business. Two days after the protests, in the face of public outrage and lobbying efforts from the tech sector, Congress shelved SOPA indefinitely. But that doesn't mean the war is over. As one Anonymous tweet warned about SOPA: "It can be brought back anytime. The bill must be KILLED." Like the web companies involved in the protests, anons tend to argue that anti-piracy legislation could send the Internet down an ever-tightening spiral of government control. Many anons go further, portraying such bills as deliberate assaults on the right to free speech. They say they oppose anti-piracy efforts on idealistic grounds, not that they don't enjoy a bit of pirated entertainment from time to time. In general, obeying the law isn't their priority. "The Internet is the Wild West," Phoenix said on the night of the attacks, "and Anonymous will fight against any attempt to tame it." That conversation with Phoenix was not my first. All of our communications took place online, mostly in the networks of chat rooms where anons plan their attacks (and banter endlessly), and I had come to think of him as a messenger from the Internet underworld: He had one foot in the world of "hax0rs" -- hacker-speak for hackers -- and one in the world of capital letters and correct spelling. He was like a hacker Hermes, moving freely between the realms of the living and the dead, except that in this case the realm of the dead was a dominion of cyberspace in which the dead possessed an unusual degree of expertise in massively multiplayer online video games and porn. Altogether, I spoke with more than 30 anons, and in some respects, their attitudes couldn't have been more different, but one thing seemed to hold them together. They saw the Internet as their homeland, their home. Among them were Phoenix, Xyzzy and Gregg Housh. Together, their stories roughly trace the rise of Anonymous and the battles leading up to what Phoenix calls the war. THE ORIGINS: XYZZY Xyzzy said he was in his early twenties, lived in the Boston area, and described himself as an out-of-work computer guy. He had been around Anonymous since its beginning about a decade ago, and as far as I could tell he spent all his time online. There was a two-week stretch in which I instant-messaged with him for hours every night, and I assumed he was going out of his way to talk to me until he told me he was simultaneously IMing with three other people and participating in a seven-person video chat on Skype. Some anons talked about the Internet as their homeland. For Xyzzy, the Internet had literally given him a home. In 2008, he said, the Secret Service pulled him out of a classroom at school after he played a little joke on the government by spamming a .gov website with "KILL OBAMA" rants. ("Not a good idea," he reflected.) His parents kicked him out of the house, and some friends in Anonymous took him in. He considered one of them his "Internet mom" and said he thought of her as "kinda better" than his real mom. He said he was about 12 or 13 when he discovered the Internet, and couldn’t really remember what life was like before that. "I wasn't anything," he wrote. "I was just a nerd who never really spoke up." The Internet gave him balls. And a mouth. In the chat rooms where he hung out he learned how to mock people and later found he could use this skill "irl", where he went from "never talking in school to making fun of everyone who picked on me for being nerdy." He also learned how to "socially engineer" people -- manipulate them. Often, he said, that meant calling an email provider and tricking the friendly lady who answered the phone into handing over a password to someone's account, enabling him to break in, steal the person's credit-card number and sell it. And he learned how to "troll." At the time, if you didn't troll you weren't really an anon. Trolling is the art of deliberately irritating people until they flip out or otherwise react in a way that generates laughs, or "lulz." It is the bedrock of Anonymous culture, and in the early 2000s there were dozens of "trolling gangs" roaming the back alleys of the Internet. Xyzzy wanted me to understand that they pretty much established the Anonymous mindset. He stressed that when Anonymous started, it was made up of "jerks," and he meant this as a compliment. And he was especially insistent that I appreciate the historical significance of one group of jerks in particular, the Penis Pumpers For Lyfe. The Penis Pumpers were "Anonymous before Anonymous was Anonymous," Xyzzy said. They were a band of tricksters who hung out in IRC, or Internet Relay Chat, a sort of underground city of the web that continues to dominate the Anonymous landscape. If IRC is a city, then its "networks" are the buildings. Each network is comprised of chat rooms, or channels. The Pumpers had their own channels and would join, say, the NHL room and "bitch about hockey, something they had no clue about, just to piss people off." They'd take over other people's channels, ban the real owners, impersonate them and use the stolen personas to troll. "Whatever worked to mess with the intended target," said Xyzzy. Sometimes the jokes went to harsh extremes, and that hasn't changed. In 2010, an 11-year-old girl nicknamed Jessi Slaughter issued a YouTube threat against "haters" who had started an Internet rumor about her. She said she'd "pop a Glock in your mouth and make a brain slushy." As a Gawker account put it, "Ha ha." Unfortunately, as Gawker went on to note, the response went beyond "ha ha." People found her real name, address and phone number. They passed the information around. A bomb squad showed up to her school after a suspicious package arrived in the mail. Encyclopaedia Dramatica, a website that chronicles the lore and pranks of the Internet in the fuck-you-it's-funny style of the Internet itself, published an item on how to troll her. "Tell her dad that we are going to beat her up." "Tell her to kill herself." Jessi responded with another video. In this one, she was seen crying and whimpering while her father crouched in the background, screaming at the camera and shaking his fist. His awkward threats would become memes. A year later, he was arrested for punching Jessi in the mouth, and six months after that, she posted a video saying she'd been institutionalized and was living in foster care. Last summer, her mother wrote on Facebook that the father had died of a massive heart attack. Someone posted a screenshot of the message on Obviously there isn’t anything political about relentlessly picking on an 11-year-old, but Anonymous has used many of the same schoolyard tactics to pick on much more powerful adversaries. At its most basic level, trolling is about humiliating people who seem to take themselves too seriously or pretend to be something they're not: 11-year-old girls, corporate executives, whoever. The troll jabs at them until they jab back, exposing their vulnerabilities, then jabs at those weak spots until they do something rash and truly embarrass themselves. Xyzzy told me he and another anon once trolled someone at an antiwar rally in Boston. In an indication of how much Anonymous has evolved since then, he said they attended the rally not to join the protest but to screw with the protesters. Xyzzy told his friend he bet he could "troll out" the first guy he saw who was obviously there just to pick up girls. "So we got near the guy and the guy makes the first move," wrote Xyzzy. "He rants at us about peace and I tell him, 'Look, dude, I don't give a fuck.' He jumps on me about how I'm the problem with the world today." "And I just turn it on him," Xyzzy continued. "How HE is the problem with the world today cause he can't leave people alone and needs to stick his retarded nose in other people's business. He clearly is upset so I keep at it saying how he doesn't know the first thing about what it means to stand up for what you believe in. And he responds with how he'll show me how he stands up for what he believes in." At this point in the story, Xyzzy paused to note that while he is under 6 feet tall and "a fat kid," his target stood about 6-foot-4 and looked like he worked out. Xyzzy was not to be intimidated, however. On the Internet, he had learned he could use his wit to humiliate pretty much anyone. Years after the protest, the typical Anonymous trolling target would be the government-corporate matrix, not just some bro at a peace rally. Whatever. Xyzzy isn't picky. He's happy as long as he's having a laugh. By the time he'd finished with the bro at the peace rally, the bro was in police custody. THE GODFATHER Broadly speaking, there are two kinds of anons: those who want to change the world and those who are in it only for the lulz. Xyzzy moved closer to the first group over time, but he remains a lulz man at heart. One of his friends, however, appeared to have transformed himself completely, leaving behind a trail of self-serving crimes. He was part of a group of anons whose elevated stature in the community had earned them the derisive label "leaderfags," and when Xyzzy met them they convened in their own private channel, from which they exerted a certain amount of influence over the rest of Anonymous. Exactly how much influence is debatable, but Xyzzy, for one, called them the "Illuminati of the Internet" and described his friend, with perhaps just a touch of hyperbole, as "the Godfather." The "Godfather" is a 35-year-old computer engineer who lives in a blue-collar suburb of Boston. In November, I visited his home, a wood-frame house up the street from a convenience store and a laundromat. Parked in the driveway was a black Scion emblazoned with the words "Geek Choice" and a phone number: 1-800-GEEK-HELP. A small box of business cards was mounted to the side. I took one. "Computer problems?" it said. "We come to you." A shy, pretty woman, the Godfather's girlfriend, led me to an upstairs bedroom where the Godfather was seated at an incredible array of computer monitors. He had a thin build, a bemused expression and a loud, direct voice. He said he needed food, so we hopped aboard the Geekmobile. I rested my feet on a pile of empty Pepsi bottles. At a nearby restaurant, the Godfather ordered a chicken sandwich and told me that a would-be whistleblower had recently come to him with information that could potentially destroy the reputation of a certain international media mogul. He said he needed to figure out how to protect the whistleblower before pulling the trigger. "Before I'm dead," he said, "I want his empire to be in ruins." The Godfather's name is Gregg Housh, and his sense of himself as someone capable of molding the world to his vision dates at least to 2008, when he played a key role in helping Anonymous organize a series of protests against the Church of Scientology. Following his involvement in these demonstrations, Scientologists uncovered his identity and took him to court, which had the unintended effect of putting him in a good position to talk to the press. Housh, an excellent talker, became a de facto Anonymous spokesman. Confident and articulate, with a little gray in his hair, he started giving interviews to The New York Times, CNN and other outlets. (For his part, Housh rejects the label of spokesman, taking pains to stress that no one person can speak for Anonymous as a whole.) As a protest organizer, he also made connections in the Boston Police Department, which came in handy earlier this year when demonstrators set up tents on a plot of green across the street from the city's Federal Reserve building. In the early weeks of the Occupy movement, Anonymous essentially served as a publicity arm, using its Internet fame to spread the word at a time when few traditional media outlets were paying attention. Housh worked his media connections, established a cellphone-to-cellphone rapport with the Boston police superintendent and cultivated relationships with political operatives. At one point he arranged for Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick to visit the camp, then led the governor on a guided tour. I watched him give a similar tour to the state treasurer and engage in some friendly ribbing with a city councilman, and it occurred to me that he'd make a pretty good politician himself. Housh has not always been interested in politics. Far from it, he said he used to care only about "amassing as much stuff as I possibly could." When he was growing up in Dallas, his father abandoned the family, leaving his mother alone to care for him and his sister, who has cerebral palsy. Housh quickly came to appreciate the value of money. He also started thinking about ways to make it that didn't involve sweating over a fryer at McDonald’s. At around age 10, he discovered a glitch in a video game at an arcade near his house: When he pressed a button at the right moment, the machine would spit out a token. He did this a few times, ambled over to the token machine and unloaded his spoils at a discount. Before long he had three friends working for him in two cities. He later realized this technically qualified as racketeering. Cunning and rebellious, he might have ended up writing bad checks or ripping off insurance companies for a living, but when he was 14 his mother gave him his first computer. Within a half-hour, he says, "every part that could be separated or unplugged was sitting on the living room floor." By 16, he had dropped out of school and joined a software piracy gang. He drew on the combined skill set of the hacker and the con man, employing the techniques of "social engineering" to get people to fork over stolen software and access to Internet servers. In 2001, the FBI caught up with him and he served three months in a federal prison. When he was released, he had a hard time finding himself. He was afraid to reenter the criminal underworld and unimpressed with what passed for fun outside of it. And then he found 4chan. Founded in 2003 by a 15-year-old named Christopher Poole, 4chan was initially a collection of forums where people could discuss anime and Japanese comics. By the time Housh arrived in 2007, the website, particularly a section called "random," had devolved into a reeking cesspool of gore, porn and insanity. In attempts to capture its unique charms, reporters have likened it to a stall in a boy's bathroom, a locker crammed with fireworks and Hustlers and maybe a copy of "Mein Kampf," even the id. There was only one rule -- no child porn. Reports suggest it was lightly enforced. A quick perusal of the first page of "random" on the evening of Dec. 19, 2011, yielded a picture of a woman's crotch, a picture of a woman's ass, a request for pictures of the feet of "pre-teen models/non-models," a poster recruiting people to flood a rival website with "filth and porn," two rape jokes, several racial slurs, a picture of someone vomiting and a picture of Kim Jong Il accompanied by the comment, "Good night, sweet prince." Conversations with 4chan regulars made it clear that this was a quiet evening. During the past five years, some of the lighter culture of 4chan has seeped into the mainstream: The pictures of cats with misspelled captions (lolcats), those links that trick you into playing that obnoxious music video (rickrolling). These are "memes" and they generate "lulz." In Housh’s day, the lulz abounded. If you wanted "epic lulz," you could hack into someone's emails and use the stolen information to troll. Or you could "d0x" someone (publish documentation of his identity). Or "DDoS" someone's website (flood it with traffic and knock it offline). Or "swat" someone (get an unsuspecting victim to turn on his webcam, then call the police and "lol" as a SWAT team kicks down the door). All of these activities were "raids," and though people usually planned them in the IRC networks, they assembled their raiding parties on 4chan. The one thing that made them possible was that the site allowed you to post stuff anonymously. People began calling themselves "Anonymous," which became a meme of its own. You began hearing phrases like "Expect us" and "We Are Legion," which have become enshrined in the culture's lexicon. Housh's first adventure as an anon turned out to be a high watermark in 4chan history: a giant raid on the online multiplayer game "Habbo Hotel." At a predetermined hour on July 12, 2007, he and hundreds of other anons logged into the game and selected the same avatar from the character menu: a black guy with an Afro. Then they crowded around the virtual swimming pool, effectively blocking the other players from using it, while proclaiming that the pool had been closed "due to AIDS." Other anons gathered on the patio and arranged themselves into the shape of a swastika. This was called a "swastiget," Housh explained to me matter-of-factly. "You get a swastika on a website or a piece of software that people have to see." Even in those days, one could have conceivably justified many of the 4chan pranks on moral grounds, and when he recounted the "Habbo" tale, Housh attempted to do so, sort of. He said that by creating a character that arguably looked like a racist white guy's idea of a black guy, the "Habbo" design team had done something "kind of racist, so we decided to go be racist to them." There was also a news story making the rounds about a hotel in Alabama that had banned someone with AIDS from the pool. Or something. Mostly, the raid was just fun to do, Housh admitted. Anonymous was still all about the lulz. Later that year, Anonymous brought down the website of a white-supremacist radio host and used the technique of "pedobaiting" to root out a child molester in Canada. Some anons were beginning to see themselves as a force for justice. The real transformation, though, happened in February 2008, with the birth of a movement that blended the ironic sensibility of the Internet with the earnestness of an antiwar rally. In homage to its 4chan origins, it was dubbed "Chanology." "THE INTERNET IS HERE" In "The Prince," Machiavelli warns the reader that "a violator of the property and women of his subjects" will be "hated above all things." In 16th-century Florence, an example of such property might have been a plot of farmland or an ox. In the Chanology War of 2008, the property in question was a video of Tom Cruise talking about Scientology in the pseudo-scientific lingo of the religion and generally "showing himself to be the insane person he is," said Housh. Somehow the video had made its way from Scientology's offices to the Internet, where it had generated untold quantities of lulz. So when Scientology's lawyers pressured YouTube into taking it down, anons went into a frenzy. They found it laughable and outrageous that a religion founded by someone who claimed to believe in a galactic dictator called Xenu could exercise so much control over a source of information as important as the Internet. During the next week, Housh and a few cohorts made two videos of their own. One declared war on Scientology. The other specified what that war would entail: protesting in front of Scientology centers around the world. Housh says he thought maybe a few people would show up and act like jerks. "I thought it would be good for a couple weeks of trolling," he said. It turned out he had seriously underestimated people's love of the Internet or their contempt for Scientology or both. On Feb. 10, 2008, thousands gathered outside Scientology centers in 142 cities around the world. They wore Guy Fawkes masks and blasted "Luma Luma" on boom boxes. They shouted Internet insults. They held up signs saying "OH FUCK: The Internet Is Here." More protests followed, and over time what started out as a prank turned into something more serious. The movement attracted fervent Scientology critics, including a number of defectors. As Housh and other anons got to know those people, they gained more insight into the organization and refined their talking points to target what they saw as its weak spots. Tory Christman, a prominent ex-Scientologist, told me Anonymous helped alter the balance of power between the church and its critics. "Before Anonymous, there were literally about four or five of us who would talk to the interviewers," she said. "Now, there's tons." A new idea took hold: As one anon told me, Chanology gave people the impression that "a thousand malcontent nerds can change the world by going out and yelling something." For Housh, the turning point came when he heard that two anons had "kidnapped" a young woman from a Scientology center in Florida. She had approached them at a protest and handed them a business card with a desperate message scrawled on it: "Want out." When I asked Xyzzy about Chanology, he said he initially snickered at the idea: "From what I gathered from the Internet it was just a hug box and people wanting to be important." In fact, many anons downright hated it. They mocked the protesters as "moralfags," and it wasn't the "fag" part that was meant to be derogatory. In Anonymous lingo, "fag" is basically the equivalent of "dude." A conflict was brewing -- moralfags vs. lulzfags -- and over lunch one day in Boston I asked Housh which side had prevailed. He interrupted his attack on an overdone steak and flashed a grin that suggested he hadn't entirely lost touch with his con-man side. "It's a little of both," he said.
  10. Thanks bro, they were in 2nd place with 39 votes, first place had 67. Now they are in first place by a single vote with 1 more day of voting. Thanks everyone for voting. Keep them coming.
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  12. That would be cool But Mic suck and I dont believe you can make private rooms. You basically be playing in a public room hoping no one else joins. Unless now your able to do so?
  13. Probably that and they know they're unprepared for a nation wide cyber attack if they did pass it.
  14. I read this. So they already have to the power to shut you down even if your in another country. Read the rest Then I read This Anonymous Responds To Megaupload Takedown; Claims Credit For DOJ, RIAA, MPAA, Universal Music Outages (UPDATE) Read the Rest,b=facebook And so it Begins......