An online group calling itself KnightSec has become central to the controversy over an alleged rape in the small Ohio town of Steubenville.
KnightSec is affiliated with the Anonymous hacker collective, which was involved in organizing and carrying out the Occupy Wall Street movement in the fall of 2011.
The "hacktivists" at KnightSec have been obtaining and releasing videos and other information purportedly relevant to the alleged rape, which has then been picked up by mainstream outlets.
CNN, for example, has reported on the role of hackers in the case, and the pledge by Anonymous to act as "executioner" in the Steubenville case.
Throughout, KnightSec and Anonymous have claimed they are acting "for the victim."
Now, Breitbart Bews has confirmed that users of another Anonymous-related Internet board, 4Chan.com, have released the full name of the alleged accuser, along with photos of her, and have argued that she "deserved it."
(For obvious reasons, Breitbart News will not link to or quote from the site, but has confirmed that the information posted was accurate.)
4Chan.com is highly trafficked website where users can post outrageous things without identifying themselves. As KnowYourMeme.com describes the 4Chan board:
The website has been also cited in the news media as the birthplace of Anonymous, the online collective of hackers and activists who have gained public notoriety for its cyber-attacks on a wide range of religious, corporate and governmental institutions.
Some users of 4Chan argued strenuously that the accuser did not "deserve" anything. However, given the anarchic nature of the message board, there is no way to know who is releasing what, and why, so. It is entirely possible that members of Anonymous are simultaneously campaigning against the accused, and releasing information about the victim.
As a leaderless movement, Anonymous can stand for anything. Its intimidation tactics are free floating.
It just depends on who is behind the mask.
Photo credit: Toledo Blade