It’s Day Two of #OpDestroyDailyDot or #OpDDD for short. Can we call you #OpDDD? We feel like we’re getting to know you a lot better. You can call us “The.”
To recap, if you missed our exhaustive article from yesterday: news site The Daily Dot hired legendary snitch/rat Sabu, aka Hector X. Monsegur, to review the television show CSI: Cyber. Since Sabu is literally the most hated person in the Anonymous landscape, this brought the Internet Hate Machine to full attention, attacking the very site it has been supplying with exclusives for several years now. Anonymous scoops have been, in fact, one of the key factors in the Daily Dot’s success (full disclosure: I was a part of that, as I worked there for two and a half years and left a year ago). It is, however, a core principle in Anonymous that one does not attack the media.
Naturally, this has led to different factions of the very big Anonymous tent in conflict with one another. Doemela, influential administrator of the Cyberguerrilla site, has come out strongly opposing #OpDDD. He is not alone: many in the group disagree with the operation on the grounds that giving orders and demanding people not only unfollow but block the Daily Dot on pain of being unfollowed themselves is “leaderfagging” and also on the basis that it is censoring the media. But mostly the former; Anonymous cares far more about the way Anonymous works than about the way the media does most of the time.
Recent developments include the release of the traditional video, with 1200+ views in its first few hours:
There’s also an official OpDDD Twitter account, although it’s got minimal reach, with only 24 followers. More successful is the satirical DailySabu account, with over 100 followers.
Well, it is pretty funny!
More seriously, another Pastebin document has emerged, this one including a transcript of a conversation with an unnamed Daily Dot employee and a list of advertisers to target via an email campaign. Included are suggested email messages. While the original press release, linked to by several media outlets since yesterday, has over 3,000 reads, this one has a scant 800 since it is meant not for the media or public, but for actual participants in the operation.
- <DailyDotEmployee> ok, i can say this: i’m not allowed to say exact specifics of how he came to write the story. but he didn’t file an invoice, we have no on-going contract with him, and he’s not a daily dot employee.
- <DailyDotEmployee> i’m sure they’ll say the same thing(talking about his editor). look, i’m very aware of the grief he caused. i just want you to know that this isn’t, say, an endorsement of sabu. but we run all kinds of perspectives. i got a guy to write a really eloquent condemnation of snowden, for instance, which i personally don’t agree with. it’s just part of being an open publication http://www.dailydot.com/opinion/snowden-fair-trial-defense-moss/
- <ANONYMOUS>but did that guy earn any money off of it?
- <ANONYMOUS>did sabu earn any money off of his story?
- <DailyDotEmployee> for both cases: i’m not allowed or authorized to talk about specific arrangements, i’m sorry.
In my experience, if he didn’t file an invoice, he’s not a freelancer for the Daily Dot (and I was one, so I would know). That leaves open the question of whether or not he is an actual staffer, which is unlikely but possible, or whether someone fronted for him to get paid, or whether he was not paid.
His old LulzSec compatriots have no comment, one at least having said it all in a Pastebin some time ago.
In terms of numbers, the losses have been minimal.
Then again, the Daily Dot has bought followers in the past, so what the actual percentage of real readers lost is still a question. Several months ago an analysis by the StatusPeople Twitter Follower tool showed over 80% spam/fake followers on the @DailyDot account, although now it shows only 16%.
And finally, from a critic of the operation, the most compelling question of all…