Today’s “alt” or “far right” is a loose coalition of internet trolls, white nationalists, men’s rights activists and other transgressors. They have become a subject of intense scrutiny for their astute use of digital communications to recruit new participants, manipulate the news narrative, and nurture political movements in support of populists’ agendas. Some critics compare this movement to one that emerged 6 years ago: Anonymous, the hacktivist collective that captured news headlines for its computer hacking sprees, vigilante justice operations, and support of social movements like Occupy and the Arab Spring. In her talk, Coleman will delve into the differences and similarities between Anonymous and the Alt Right, showing what we can learn about the importance of the online world for the political movements of today.
Gabriella Coleman is an anthropologist, dedicated ethnographer, academic and author whose work focuses on hackers culture and online activism, particularly Anonymous. She is a frequent commentator on hacker movements, the ethics of hacking, digital culture and cyber-politics. She holds the Wolfe Chair in Scientific and Technological Literacy at McGill University, Montreal. Her book Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Many Faces of Anonymous was named among the best books of 2014 and was awarded the Diana Forsythe Prize by the American Anthropological Association.
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