So, I was watching the news the other day, and this came up.
Trolls are now called "hacktivists" because they ruin peoples internet time and troll for political reasons.
I am amused.
Read on:IN 1988, a Cornell graduate student, Robert Tappan Morris, let loose a computer worm on the fledgling version of the Internet. He said it was meant to be an experiment, but the code he wrote spun out of his control, affecting roughly 50,000 computers connected to the network at the time. Mr. Morris, who happened to be the son of a National Security Agency scientist, became one of the earliest hackers.
Calling themselves Anonymous, they hacked into conference calls among agents of the F.B.I. (in January) and broke into the computer networks of the Vatican (last week). It has become impossible to tell who and what Anonymous might target — or exactly who within Anonymous might be behind it. Critics and defenders argue endlessly about how much of what they do should be treated as political protest — or strictly as a crime.
Leaderless, multinational and known by the ubiquitous, sly Guy Fawkes mask, Anonymous is fueled by a raft of causes, from repression in Tunisia to animal rights in Tennessee to a defense of the whistle-blower site WikiLeaks.
Whatever the cause, its message is amplified by the Internet itself, as is its impact. At a time when life, commerce and statecraft have gone digital, hacktivists can threaten governments, or they can just as easily dump innocent people’s credit card numbers on the Internet for more common criminals to steal.
“The weapon is much more accessible, the technology is more sophisticated,” said Chenxi Wang, a vice president in charge of security at Forrester Research. “Everything is online — your life, my life — which makes it much more lethal.”
Anonymous, for its part, has spawned a variety of spinoffs. Anybody can be Anonymous. And anybody who calls himself Anonymous can carry out an attack in its name. One hacker in Britain last week, calling himself a member of Anonymous, stole the health records of thousands of women registered with an abortion service provider in Britain. His boasts on Twitter put other Anonymous members in an awkward position, considering that Anonymous also took credit for attacks on the Vatican.