By reading through the few previous posts on Anonymous one should have come to a realization by now, that the term ‘hackers’ are rarely brought up. In fact, by referring to Coleman’s writing, he says that hackers, while make up a part of the Anonymous community as well as being regarded as the elite ones, are not the ones who control the evolution of Anonymous. In fact, the appearance of their name on various medias are due to the crazy obsession of the media has towards them, topped by their hunger for sensationalism.
Also one thing that worth mentioning is: Hackers are NOT responsible for DDoS attacks. DDoS attacks are conducted by individuals with the Low Orbit Ion Cannon (LOIC, refer to this post) or via a botnet (a large network of compromised computers). Confused journalists often report DDoS campaigns as a form of hacking (click here for an example of misreport and a follow-up correction)
In fact, if we do an analysis of hackers [from Anonymous] by comparing it with the attributes of a hero, we can draw a conclusion that they are not the heroes at all.
From previous post, we see the hackers doxed personal information during the course of an operation; an early input also shows losses of giant corporations like Sony due to doxing . In short, hackers are responsible for infiltrating servers to expose weak security or searching for critical information to be leaked. These two case studies has shown that the hackers from Anonymous does not show any heroic attributes at all and hence, validating the conclusion made earlier that hackers are in fact, not the heroes.They are just a small piece of puzzle that makes up the whole picture.
Who is the hero, then? Could it be the icon of Anonymous? A quote by Bruce Wayne from Batman Begins tells us that there is a possibility that the icon of Anonymous is the hero, not the community that it is made up of.
People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy, and I can’t do that as Bruce Wayne. As a man, I’m flesh and blood; I can be ignored, I can be destroyed. But as a symbol… as a symbol I can be incorruptible. I can be everlasting.
— Bruce Wayne, Batman Begins (2005).
Batman Begins (2005). [Film] Directed by Christopher Nolan. USA:DC Comics et. al
Coleman, G (2013). Anonymous in Context: The Politics and Power behind the Mask. [PDF] The Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI). Available at: <http://www.cigionline.org/sites/default/files/no3_8.pdf> [Accessed on 14th January, 2014]