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Published on April 7th, 2014 📆 | 1950 Views ⚑

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Paper-The Fall of Hacker Groups hacking history


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The earlier, bigger part of hacking history often had congregations as
protagonists. From CCC in the early 80s to TESO in the 2000s, through LoD,
MoD, cDc, L0pht, and the many other sung and unsung teams of hacker heroes,
our culture was created, shaped, and immortalized by their articles, tools,
and actions.

This article discusses why recently we do not see many hacker groups
anymore, and why the ones we do, such as Anonymous and its satellite
efforts, do not succeed in having the same cultural impact as their
forefathers.

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Hacking is, in its very essence, an underground movement. Those who take
part on it have always been the ones who (ab)used technology in ways beyond
the knowledge of the larger userbase. It is tightly linked to intense
efforts in unveiling previously unknown information as well as in sharing
these discoveries. These premises hold true for as long as we know hackers:
since computers had barely no users up until the informatic massification
of today.

The nature of the hacker interests intrinsically poses difficulties:
growing knowledge on anything is hard. It requires heavy research,
experimentation, and can turn into an endless journey if objectives are not
carefully set. Just like in any field of scientific studies, it calls for a
good amount of colaboration, an attitude which, luckily for hackers, was
greatly enabled by the advent of computer networks and, most notably, the
Internet.

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Computer networks increasingly made it possible to transmit unlimited and
uncensored information across their geographical extent with little effort,
with little costs, and in virtually no time. From the communication
development standpoint, one would expect that the events that followed the
80s to our days would lead to a geometric progression in the number of
hacker communities. In effect, hacking has arguably grown. Hacker
communities, definitely not. So what went wrong?

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