Internet hacktivist collective Anonymous is planning to disrupt the online broadcast of President Barack Obama’s 2013 State of the Union Address, according to a communiqué received by grassroots activism publicity agency The Sparrow Project.
The message was sent to an email address assigned to a Sparrow Project volunteer Tuesday morning, says a posting on The Sparrow Project’s homepage, and “details a planned effort by the group’s affiliates online to disrupt the online streaming and syndication of the President Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address, scheduled for 9pm EST.”
“The communiqué goes on to elaborate that this action is in response to a proposed executive order that would reinstate the most protested elements of the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Information Act (CISPA),” the publicity grooup writes. “In 2012 a synergistic movement of progressives, legislative reformers, online activists, and autonomous hackers successfully defeated CISPA and another controversial bill, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). Many credit Aaron Swartz and the group which he cofounded, Demand Progress, with coordinating the successful campaign to stop these bills.”
Previous Anonymous DDoS [Distributed Denial of Service] attacks have targeted the White House, U.S. Department of Justice, Internet pedophiles, the Church of Scientology, PayPal and the New York Stock Exchange, among many others. Members are known to don Guy Fawkes masks when appearing in public, as they’ve done throughout the Occupy Wall Street Movement and related protests.
“We are Anonymous,” reads the introduction on cyber chat room AnonSet. “We are Legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us.”
“Welcome to Operation State of the Union,” it continues, additionally directing users to #SOTU Twitter feed, which was trending. “POST NOW — ENGAGE ALL MEMES — FULL TROLL AHEAD.”
The following is the text from Anonymous’ communiqué sent to The Sparrow Project:
“Article II, Sector 3 of the US Constitution, says the President ‘shall from time to time give to Congress information of the State of the Union and recommend to their Consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.’
“At 9PM Eastern Standard Time, February , 2013 President Obama has planned to address a joint session of Congress to deliver the State of the Union Address. The following day, President Obama will be introducing an executive order, purportedly aimed at bolstering U.S. cybersecurity, after repeated failed attempts to pass legislation through Congress.
“Anonymous has reached a verdict of NO CONFIDENCE in this executive order and the plans to reintroduce the CISPA bill to Congress on the same day. As such, President Obama and the State of the Union Address will be BANISHED from the Internet for the duration of live delivery. So as not to infringe upon the President’s free speech, subsequent broadcasts will be allowed to pass unhindered. This action is being taken to underline a fact that appears to be sorely unrecognized by the Obama Administration — that the Internet is a sovereign territory, and does not fall under the jurisdiction of any nation state.
“We are the natives of this space, and its guardians, and we will fight until death to protect it as a neutral grounds for the unhindered interaction of all members of the human race, so long as they themselves act in harmony with this inviolable principle. Our determination is that President Obama is acting in direct contravention of this principle, and his brief exclusion is an educational, rather than a punitive measure. We hope that its lesson will be learnt. Punitive measures have not been ruled out. — Anonymous”