Episode 14: Rise of the Hacktivist

Cyber Attacks for Wikileaks, Heinbecker on Canadian Foreign Policy, Global Warming Water Park, The Sex Addict Gene, Buzzed Travel Guide to Yemen, NHL and 3D, Win a Bieber CD, The Big 6

paypal_publish.jpgIt's easy to feel anonymous on the internet. You can visit sites, leave comments, maybe post something indiscrete and not worry too much about the consequences. In some embarrassing instances net users have been busted doing rogue things like praising themselves on message boards or criticizing a rival's work without owning up to it.

 This is called Sockpuppetry. It's fun to expose this stuff, but it's mostly harmless.

This month another kind of online mayhem was unleashed. Cyber attacks were launched against individuals or companies perceived to be hostile to Wikileaks or to its incarcerated spokesperson Julian Assange.

The targets include:

-PayPal
-Amazon
-Mastercard
-The Swedish lawyer for the women accusing Assange of sex crimes
-Dutch prosecutors
-Electronic Frontier Foundation

The attacks were dubbed Operation Payback and taking credit is a group called Anonymous. It's an amorphous coalition of online lurkers and hackers who call themselves hacktivists. It's also a non-hierarchical organization so it's interesting to see how they do the things they do, even if you disagree with their methods.

On this week's Day 6, the hows and whys of Anonymous. 

UN_publish.jpgAt the UN there's some old fashioned non-cyber surveillance going on. That's according to Paul Heinbecker, Canada's former ambassador to Germany and the UN. He's been a foreign policy advisor to several Canadian Prime Ministers and has lots to say about the direction our foreign policy has taken under Stephen Harper.

Most of what he says is highly critical. It's all in his new book Getting Back in the Game:  A Foreign Policy Playbook for Canada. And obviously a former ambassador has interesting things to say about Wikileaks too.

una_publish.jpgAhhh Montana!  A mountain man's paradise: big trees, few people and nearly no federal agents poking their nose into your business. I imagine that's exactly how Ted Kaczynski saw The Treasure State when he moved there to grow his ponytail and plot attacks against academia.

Kaczynski was arrested and taken away in 1996 and now his secluded Montana spread is for sale.

They're having trouble getting their price though. Let's see if a celebrity agent can talk me into it. A real estate agent, not FBI or ATF or those guys.

iceland-waterpark-UAE_publish.jpgCartoons about people marooned in the desert always have a hallucination scene: parched and crawling on the hot dunes, the doomed schmuck suddenly thinks he sees an oasis or a Coke machine.

It's not real, buddy. Keep swallowing sand.

That must be what it's like to find Ice Land looming on the Arabian horizon.

Ice Land is no hallucination. It's the largest waterpark in the middle east. Its about 45 minutes north of Dubai. Millions of dollars have been invested and the owners have chosen a global warming motif to market it. For environmentalists, wrapping Ice Land up with an ecological message adds insult to injury. We'll talk to a critic.

Thumbnail image for kathrynpublish.jpgDo you know someone who just can't stop sleeping around? Someone who gets called a dawg, a playa, a ladies man, a bad girl, a strumpet? Try calling them this: a carrier of the unique variant of gene DRD4. A genetic anomaly.

Name calling makes it easier for a person to feel morally superior, but science is suggesting promiscuous choices don't come out of a moral void. It's a genetic twist.

Our columnist Kathryn Borel says: oh, really?

3D_publish.jpgWanna see some NHL hockey in 3D? Better than the 2D we've been seeing with the Leafs and the Oilers.

2D = depressing + depressing

If you just bought a flatscreen TV it's unlikely you'll want to upgrade to the new 3D home technology just to watch your favourite team lose. But sports TV is right on the scalpel's edge when it comes to transplanting new hi-tech into people's dens and living rooms. Sports broadcasters pioneered  HD TV and live sporting events may be the one killer app broadcast television still has going for it.

On today's show; a conversation about 3D, technology and the wide(screen) world of sports.

justin_publsih.jpgHey Bieber fans! Guess what I've got? An autographed copy of My World 2.0 signed by Justin himself. He touched it!

All you need to do to win it is vote in The Big 6 and shoot us an email telling us you did. Vote for the Big 6 by visiting our site here.

Justin's in the Trend of the Year category, but you should definitely vote in all six. Do it now, before I decide to keep the cd for myself!

yemen_publish.jpgAnd who wants to go to Yemen? There's a travel advisory warning you against it. Yemen is the home of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula with an unstable goverment and a population wazooed on the narcotic drug called Qat. There's lots of guns.

Shane Smith is a journalist and TV producer behind the new show The Vice Guide to Everything. He likes dropping in on places like Chernyobol, North Korea and Liberia. Shane met up with movie director Spike Jonez to check out Yemen. He says compared to Mexico, it's not such a bad part of the world.

anon_publish.jpgAnd remember, the world and Justin Bieber are waiting for you in our Big 6 online vote. Let us hear from you so we can work together on being the best radio show on the air in the first hours of 2011.

And it's the internet so you can be completely anonymous.

For now.

Brent Bambury @CBCDay6

 

 

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