Lately, I have been interested in the twisty under current of hacktivism. Giving voice to the voiceless is a passion, and hactivism, whether right or wrong, is giving voice to something.
In studying hactivism, I have stumbled over most of the famous groups, ideologies, and movements. They are all fascinating, and they all do something a little different or champion something unique.
My favorite among them is The Jester.
So, to clear up the obvious, I have a total crush on the concept of The Jester. He is a super hero in a world full of villains. But, he could be a she. And he could be a 13 year old. I have no idea. No one has an idea. The mastermind of Jester is that no one knows anything about him, and that is the way it should be.
There are people out there devoted to unmasking The Jester. I am not one of them. If he showed up in my hotel room, I would hope he'd wear a mask or make me wear a blindfold; I totally don't want to know. He is magical the way he is (and, I don't actually think he is a girl or a 13 year old). He can't do the work he does if we know who he is...and the work he is doing is important.
So, who is The Jester? Well, in my fantasy, he is about 35 and is built like a marine and wears army pants and a black tee shirt. He has a great tan, too. Oh, and he wears combat boots and has a picture of his Mom on the back of his dog tags. But, that's just me.
In reality? Who cares? Let his work speak for him.
The Jester is a single focus operation - he takes down terrorist websites. He is patriot hacker and only hacks those things which he believes pose a threat to American soldiers or the American spirit. He mostly focuses on taking down Jihadist sites, but occasionally goes after anti-American hate groups like the Westboro Baptist Church, and, more recently, Ed Snowden. Newsweek did a great story on him, and even the military seems to recognize his capabilities. To date, he is the only hacker that has successfully stopped major leaking movements like WikiLeaks (skip to minute 28).
So, should we unmask Jester? Will someone get a fancy car or get all the girls if they know his identity? Someone tweeted that we are giving him too much power; others tweet that our government doesn't even know who is he or what he is doing. If that were true, Newsweek wouldn't care to write about him, and the military wouldn't mention him. They care; they know what he is doing, and he can do it a heck of a lot faster without the red tape of organizational structure.
Uncle Ben would tell Jester that "with great power comes great responsibility." Jester seems to know that already. If he takes down a site because they are going to shelter Snowden, he brings it back up once the government changes its mind. He doesn't go after random enemies; he doesn't run around defacing random websites. He seems to recognize his role; hell, the guy defined it.
So, to those folks trying to unmask The Jester, get a life. Go after the bad guys.