One of the best-known spokespersons for Anonymous has parted ways with the hacker group to form his own collective aimed at more noble global causes. Barrett Brown, who's spoken on behalf of the group on NBC Nightly News during its cyber wars with credit card companies, told Ars Technica about his plans for future "hacktivist" pursuits and why he left Anonymous.
Brown seems put off by the group's latest priorities--including attacking videogame maker Sony for suing a customer who modified his PlayStation. The mission, codenamed OpSony, pales in comparison to previous efforts, according to Brown, which include assisting revolutionaries in North Africa to topple corrupt regimes. "As things like OpSony arise, you attract a lot of people whose interest is in fucking with video game companies--which is not to say that there aren't legitimate reasons for OpSony," he says. "But to the extent that someone sits things out when we're working to promote liberty and fight dictatorships but then hops on board when we start going after an electronics firm that's perpetrated far lesser villainy, one has to question those peoples' priorities."
Brown tells Ars he's going to shed the Anonymous banner and start working "with people who are themselves still very much associated with Anonymous and AnonOps in particular." That decision comes on the heels of a rash of infighting at Anonymous following a rogue member's decision to hijack an Internet Relay Chat channel, which is the primary means with which Anonymous members communicate with one another.