The continuous meshing of the cyber and real world has created an array of new facets in politics, both in the context of both upholding democracy and freedom of information through the internet, and the emergence of cyber-politics; politics about the internet and issues concerning it.
A group which is probably one of the most powerful and recognized e-democracy, cyper-political movement is ‘Anonymous’, the hackers that use their skills to uncover corruption and reveal censored and important information to the public in order for them to be fully educated on their governments which then influences their voting decisions and behavior by providing ways to protest against corruption and other humanitarian problems (Coleman, 2014). They have been key players within ‘wikileaks’ and have been spokespeople for the oppressed and forgotten people of the world 100 times over.
The video below shows live footage of their 2011 hacking of FoxNews in order to essentially ‘call out’ the U.S Governments for misinforming the general public on the state of the economy and attempting to use this to take money from the working class.
More recently, the group have also had their say on the 2016 Olympics by presenting the world with the rising disparity that Brazil is experiencing as a result. An excerpt from their Olympic protest goes as follows
“The event was not planned to benefit the population. It was not dedicated to Brazilian sports fans, and neither was it a spectacle for tourists visiting the country. The winners, were not the Germans who took the trophy, but the corrupt–the contractors and FIFA–who profited millions in the most expensive Wold Cup in history.” (Anonymous, 2016).
The group also went on to describe how news corporations and government have tried to ‘soften’ and conceal the harsh reality and violence caused by the event that is costing the world and extreme amount of not only money but also basic human rights and resources, as well as intertwining the release of information with a prominent call to action and message that corruption and greed will not be tolerated.
Watch the full release here:
Activist groups such as Anonymous, also known as ‘hacktivists’ , play an important role in a society where the rich and powerful lead countries and make decisions. It is without a doubt that corruption and misuse of power is prevalent in the 21st century and that the public must have means of educating themselves and maintain their right to know the truth and have the ability to make a change.
There are many ways to have your say through the internet, from signing e-petitions from organisations such as Avaaz, to writing your own message to government officials or starting a protest on Change.org. Why not be involved with righting wrongs? You can fight wars simply by opening your laptop.
Coleman, G. 2014. Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Many Faces of Anonymous. 1st ed. London, Verso.
Anonymous. 2016. Exclusion of the Olympic Games 2016. Published August 11 2016 [ONLINE] Available at http://anonofficial.com/anonymous-exclusion-of-the-olympic-games-2016/ . [Accessed 31 August 2016].