Friday, December 30, 2011

Ideology drives both Hacktivism and Online Piracy

2011 could very well have gone down as the year of Hacktivism. Hacktivism is the use of computers as a means of protest to promote political ends on the Internet, akin to regular activism and civil disobedience using hacking tools. Organizations like Anonymous and Lulzsec targeted attacks against high profile companies and governments linked to the ongoing campaign against WikiLeaks, made Hacktivism a buzzword. There were other similar campaigns against political targets in Russia and other countries. Most of these campaigns are ideological, not for profit movements.

Online piracy is also growing at rapid pace. According to reports piracy in books, movies, games, films and software results in a 200 billion US$ loss annually. Most piracy is undertaken by net users who buy and share on file sharing sites.  Most of those who share and others who download believe that there is nothing incorrect in doing so, taking in justification in what they believe is the high price charged by companies. In short, the act of sharing is also ideological, though there is an element of individual monetary gain for net pirates.

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