For a few hours Wednesday, Twitter briefly suspended @YourAnonNews, the largest of the hacking collective Anonymous's accounts on the social-media network, for "posting an individual's private information such as private email address, physical address, telephone number, or financial documents," per the notice tweeted by a brief replacement account (pictured below). The tweet in question, pictured above, included a photo that Twitter has since taken down of or about @Dearshirley, the account of Westboro Baptist Church spokesperson Shirley Phelps-Roper, which they hacked earlier this week in response to Westboro protesting funerals for the victims in Newtown, Connecticut. The main Anonymous news account is now operational again.
It's not clear what, exactly, was going on with the photo in question. But Anonymous presumably pulled it from inside the non-public parts of the @DearShirley account, which has since been suspended. The other day, Anonymous had used its hacking powers to make the leaders of Westboro, which has been labeled a hate group, look like they felt for the Newtown victims more than they said they did. But Anonymous also had access to much more data linked to the Westboro leaders' Twitter accounts, such as Direct Messages, which may have led the hackers to more personal information. In addition to the offending tweet, @YourAnonNews had previously tweeted some messages that might fall under the umbrella of "private information" — meeting locations for the funeral protests, for example. Whatever the offending photo revealed, it must have been more intimate than that.
Though Gawker's Adrian Chen had expected an Anonymous uprising following this suspension, the group is thanking Twitter for the publicity.
Oh… and thank you @twitter, all the press about us being gone may help us reach 1M! Loves you!— Anonymous (@YourAnonNews) December 19, 2012
You can't suspend an idea.— Anonymous (@YourAnonNews) December 19, 2012
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.