4Chan + Open Source Protest = ?

4Chan’s on a DDoS rampage:

Led by the users of the 4chan message boards, a coordinated and massive DDoS attack Friday and Saturday took down the websites of both the MPAA and the anti-BitTorrent AiPlex Software.

According to a flyer being distributed around the net, ‘Operation Payback‘ will now spread to another popular hate figure’s website. At 3pm Eastern today a new DDoS attack will be launched against the RIAA, but they won’t be the only targets. New information suggests that at the same time an attack will also be launched against the UK’s BPI.

Users can download and donate their processing power using a tool called the ‘Low Orbit Ion Cannon’, which has an interesting writeup:

LOIC (Low Orbit Ion Cannon) is an app, written in C# and developed by praetox that was exploited during Project Chanology to attack teh $cifags‘s many web sites. It attempts to DDoS the target site by bandwidth raeping, sending TCP, UDP, or HTTP requests to the site until its ass looks like goatse. It is also in the Dangerous Kitten tools pack.

WARNING: this will cause srs nerd rage and make asspies have meltdowns, which will result in episodes of bawwing. Use at your own risk.

The real question is: what is the impact of this strategy?

Like traditional mass protest, this has very little impact on the activities of the targets that 4chan has selected. How this works:

  • It does garner plenty of attention. (Defacing institutions has that effect.)
  • Shows the strength of the organization (X thousand people are using the LOIC).
  • Solidifies that social group. (We did something!)

However, this series of attacks had very little impact on the operations of the MPAA, or AiPlex, or RIAA.

A DDoS is, unless its targeting more critical backend servers – email, calendars, security (physical and non), etc – the attack is akin to graffiti on the the office building, or paint on the White House, or standing outside the court so no one can enter. (But leaving all the critical backdoors untouched.)

The parallels the plight of traditional mass protest as well. If the protest is to accomplish anything, it’s got to break the law, and transition into an insurgency-style organization. If this shift is mishandled, there’s a good chance the backlash will destroy the organization (or participants). A big part of this is gaining funding to get the snowball you need.

If its handled well…. you’re an insurgency.

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  • Bob Morris
    Sep 19, 2010

    Exactly. I helped organize many anti Iraq war protests, some of which drew hundreds of thousands. Mostly we got ignored by the media and had no effect on policy. Different tactics are needed.

    In such protests two things need to be watched.

    a) Does the group leading it have ulterior motives? In this case the answer was Yes. The controlling group primarily used the anti-war front group as a way to recruit for their party. But you can’t do both. A group that blocks moderates and non-ideologues from having any say or power can never be a truly mass organization.

    b) Watch your base. Because maybe it’s not really there. Once Obama got elected, the anti-war protests fizzled. Apparently most were anti-Bush, not anti-war, and war is apparently ok as long as your side is in power.

  • Ashley Jones
    May 17, 2022

    Hi, all is going nicely here and ofcourse every one is sharing data, that’s actually excellent, keep up writing.

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