As often as Anonymous is in the news, not many media outlets seem to have a very firm grasp on what the hacker collective is all about. First making a new for themselves by breaking into Sarah Palin’s personal email account during 2008, the loose-knit, leaderless group is now the No. 1 retaliator when international governments attack web freedom.
A new documentary called We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists, which is slated for a release in theaters and online in late October, tries to give some context about the group. The trailer was released at the end of last year and the film premiered at Austin’s SXSW Festival earlier in 2012.
“Anonymous kind of was like the big strong buff kid that had low self-esteem then all of a sudden punched somebody in the face and was like Holy Shit I’m really strong,” says one guy in the trailer.
The group – which really isn’t a group, whenever hackers lash out at governments or company’s it’s often credited to Anonymous – recently made news for attacking the Department of Justice following the Demonoid takedown and temporarily disabling GoDaddy.com. Anonymous has also been connected with the Occupy movement.
It looks engaging, certainly worth seeing, but interview-heavy documentaries like this often get dragged down by the fawning oral histories. It would be a waste of a great opportunity if the filmmakers only attempt to tell one side of the story. Discussions with the FBI, copyright enforcers and Internet experts are essential if this movie is going to have even a semblance of two-sidedness.
You can find the movie’s official website here. Below is the trailer, then a panel discussion from SXSW with the director Brian Knappenberger and former member of Anonymous, Gregg Housch.
Do you know more about Anonymous? Contact WhenYouPutItThatWay[at]yahoo.com.