Half a dozen years ago, anthropologist Gabriella Coleman set out to study the rise of the global internet phenomenon known as Anonymous just as some of its members were turning to political protest and dangerous disruption, before they shot to fame as a key player in the battles over WikiLeaks, the Arab Spring, and Occupy Wall Street. The narrative brims with details unearthed from within a notoriously mysterious subculture, whose semi-legendary tricksters -- such as Topiary, tflow, Anachaos, and Sabu -- emerge as complex, diverse, politically and culturally sophisticated people. Propelled by years of chats and encounters with a multitude of hackers, including imprisoned activist Jeremy Hammond and the double agent who helped put him away, Hector Monsegur, Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy is filled with insights into the meaning of digital activism and little understood facets of culture in the Internet age, including the history of "trolling," the ethics and metaphysics of hacking, and the origins and manifold meanings of "the lulz."
First published in hardcover: London : Verso, 2014
"With a new afterword"--Cover
Introduction: "And now you have got our attention" -- On trolls, tricksters, and the Lulz -- Project Chanology: I came for the Lulz but stayed for the outrage -- Weapons of the geek -- The shot heard round the world -- Anonymous everywhere -- "Moralfaggotry" everywhere -- Revenge of the Lulz -- LulzSec -- AntiSec -- The desire of a secret is to be told -- The sabutage -- Conclusion: Daybreak -- Epilogue: The state of Anonymous