Editorial By Vagabond 'Tony' Carter

Users of the Anonymous meme are at it again it seems, targeting the U.S. Sentencing Commission website in a show of support and outrage over the trial and subsequent suicide of computer scientist and hacktivist Aaron Swartz.

Commission Website1

 

The defacement claims that with Aaron’s death “a line was crossed.”,  and that they’ve infiltrated several government computer systems and copied secret information that they now threaten to make public. The Department of Justice has yet, as of this writing, to issue a statement (as of this moment the site appears also to be down).

This leads me to wonder a few things, much of which is the same thing that runs through my mind every time someone puts on a virtual anonymous mask and commits a crime of this nature, and yes, this was a criminal act.

Do you honestly think this somehow helps?

While I agree that Aaron’s being charged as a criminal for a violation of a company’s Terms of Service was a travesty of justice and that his death was and is an absolute tragedy. How does actually breaking the law in any way help the cause of an innocent man, whose trial was never completed and who may have even been acquitted had he lived?

As I’ve said many times before: I agree with the sentiment, but not the method. Acts like this do nothing to aide the cause and only drag the names of the true victims, in this case Aaron Swartz, in the mud. A line was crossed alright – by the Anonymous meme user or users responsible for this act of vandalism.

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