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SCRIPT KIDDIES by John Vranesevich
An AntiOnline Editorial
10-6-98 http://www.antionline.com

In the past, a hacker was an individual who literally had to spend years to learn the inner workings of computer technology, programming, and hardware. Only then could he begin to explore possible vulnerabilities, and develop, for himself, ways to exploit those vulnerabilities, and more importantly, ways to patch them. Through out these years of learning, the hacker would develop a certain respect for the technology that he was studying, and a certain level of maturity would inherently develop as well. Now, in present day society, with point and click utilities abound, a younger, less mature, less knowledgeable, and less respectful, generation of "hackers" have come to life.

Individuals who haven't had to go through the years of learning, and study. Individuals, who because of the lack of experiencing this "learning process" have not developed the traits which once went hand in hand with the persona of "hacker". Kids who are at that age, where they have very little self respect, and even less respect for others. Kids who are insecure, and have a strong desire to feel that sense of belonging. The sense of being accepted as part of a group, and respected among their peers. The same emotional state which once led inner city youth to gangs, is now leading them to "hacking". Individuals who feel the ultimate sense of power in "hacking a webpage". Their words being read by thousands of others. Their ability to control something. The technology is not a love, but a tool to accomplish something much more in their eyes. A tool that can be used to gain them acceptance, a feeling of empowerment, belonging, and control. A tool to allow them to escape the ridicule of the kids on the bus, or the back of their parent's hand. Oh, and I can hear people screaming "stereotyping" right now.

Well, call it what you may. I've talked to literally thousands of these so called "hackers" over the past 5 or 6 years. You'd be surprised at how clear of a mold many of them come from. I am really sick of hearing "we hacked that page to get a message out". Perhaps, in some very, very, rare cases, that is true. But, I submit to you, the vast majority of time a hack is done first, and a political agenda is developed after hand to help rationalize the crime. On top of that, one hardly has to "hack a webpage" to get their point of view told. That's the wonder of the Internet. Everyone is an equal. Everyone has the opportunity to post their views, and share their thoughts. Once again, these so called "hackers" avoid the developmental process. They don't want to spend the time and energy necessary to create a successful website of their own. So, they maliciously exploit the work of others that have.

I'm 19 years old right now. I know what it is like being upset about something, and feeling that there's no way to share that with others. That's one of the reasons that I made AntiOnline. It's my forum. My way of expressing my views on things. To think of me, a 19 year old college drop out. Yet, my work is viewed millions of times every month. That, my little "hacker" friends, is power. That is what the Internet is about. That's why it works. That's why it's growing. Unless you change your ways soon, you will never be truly experiencing the wonder that technology is.

To truly love technology, love how it is changing our society, bringing mankind together in a way never before experienced in the history of the human race. You'll never truly be experiencing the very thing that you feel you have ultimate control over. A true irony indeed. Of course, as with all things, there is hope. There are people out their hanging on tightly to the ways of old, and the true hacker identity. There are groups like L0pht, the distributed.net bovine group, and the kids down at your local high school learning visual basic. Those are the true hackers. A desire to learn, a desire to be the first to discover something new. A true hacker mentality is something that shouldn't be thought of as a dark, mischievous thing, but perhaps, more like that of a scientist. Study, learn, experiment, and share what you've found with others......

Yours In CyberSpace,
John Vranesevich
Founder, AntiOnline

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