My blog: What is and who are Anonymous and will you don their Guy Fawkes mask on 11-2?

The first part of my question has vexed many a column inch. Pages and pages of content has been devoted to trying to pin down the answer. Unlike most previous attempts I have read, I will give you my definition just below and then go on to add my own column-inches of flapping-around flannel:

Anonymous are humanities modern eclectic tech-derived enigmatic protest movement in the 21st century.

There often described “random behaviour” can be broken down into good operations, bad operations and, let’s be straight, just plan daft operations. This implies to me that Anonymous is a very eclectic mix of people. Their motives and actions are eclectic; some good, some bad, and some just plan strange. Their Operations are sometimes juvenile, sometime exceptionally clever.

I think members of Anonymous come from all walks of life [although mainly from the tech-centric) and all age groups (although mainly those with access to tech]. Anonymous seem to be a reflection of what many would secretly like to do, but have never had the balls/skills to put those hidden yearnings into actions because we’ve reasoned the consequences of being caught by the authorities in enacting those actions would be a price we are not will to pay (it’s ironic that many would like to enact their hidden desires, free of dire consequences to themselves).

Yet Anonymous is undoubtedly growing. Their collective of inclusion is encompassing more and more willing participants under the Anonymous meme. I evidence this by the recent Parliamentarians in Poland and Bulgaria who have donned Anonymous’s now infamous Guy Fawkes mask in protest of ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement.

Anonymous are to be admired and/or feared, not because they are anonymous (small ‘a’) for that is simply a fear of the unknown, but because they are a reflection of our hidden desires to protect others and/or exact vengeance.

When trying to quantify Anonymous, they might be what you think they at one moment, then the next, completely confound/baffle/horrify you with the antithesis of what you thought previously.

What drives them is allegedly ‘lulz’, and ‘lulz’, like ‘quality’ in Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, is very hard to define accurately for a grouping as diverse and eclectic as I propose Anonymous is.

I have sourced my own Guy Fawkes mask, one Anonymous meme, which I will be taking on 11th February 2012 when I attend a demonstration against the ratification of ACTA in the EU.  Details here: http://wiki.stoppacta-protest.info/Main_Page

I shall wear it with a mixture of pride and apprehension, just like I would feel pride and apprehension were I not wearing it yet still be demonstrating.

Attending public demonstrations I find to be rather frightening experiences until one ‘gets into it’. Anonymity at a public demonstration seems somehow perverse.  It’s a bit like someone trying to convince you they are being transparent when they hand you a heavily redacted document.

Oh dear, I have gone on on haven’t I, yet, that is what Anonymous does to me, it makes me think, then think some more, do a little pondering, re-think, research, get angry, get happy, feel differently. Again, I think:

Anonymous are humanities modern eclectic tech-derived enigmatic protest movement in the 21st century.

I can’t think of a better way to descibe them, feel free to try.

Thank you for reading.

Sincerely,

awbMaven

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