Anonymous is a loosely associated international network of activist and hacktivist entities.A website nominally associated with the group describes it as "an Internet gathering" with "a very loose and decentralized command structure that operates on ideas rather than directives".During the DDo S attacks, a group of Anons uploaded a You Tube video in which a robotic voice speaks on behalf of Anonymous, telling the "leaders of Scientology" that "For the good of your followers, for the good of mankind—for the laughs—we shall expel you from the Internet." Many protesters wore the stylized Guy Fawkes masks popularized by the graphic novel and film V for Vendetta, in which an anarchist revolutionary battles a totalitarian government; the masks soon became a popular symbol for Anonymous.By the start of 2009, Scientologists had stopped engaging with protesters and had improved online security, and actions against the group had largely ceased.However this may not always be the case, as some of the collective prefer to instead cover their face without using the well-known mask as a disguise.
We [Anonymous] just happen to be a group of people on the Internet who need—just kind of an outlet to do as we wish, that we wouldn't be able to do in regular society. They weave vast fabrications as a form of performance.
Dozens of people have been arrested for involvement in Anonymous cyberattacks, in countries including the US, UK, Australia, the Netherlands, Spain, India and Turkey.
Evaluations of the group's actions and effectiveness vary widely.
Later targets of Anonymous hacktivism included government agencies of the U.
S., Israel, Tunisia, Uganda, and others; the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant; child pornography sites; copyright protection agencies; the Westboro Baptist Church; and corporations such as Pay Pal, Master Card, Visa, and Sony.
Encyclopedia Dramatica was founded in 2004 by Sherrod Di Grippo, initially as a means of documenting gossip related to livejournal, but it quickly was adopted as a major platform by Anonymous for satirical and other purposes.