I have been watching a strange cyber-drama unfold over the past eight days or so involving neo-Nazi podcaster Hal Turner, who has found himself the object of retribution by a loosely-confederated group of hackers called the "Legion of Anonymous."
Turner, for those unfamiliar with his brand of hate, uses his website and podcasts to advocate the murder of "savage negro beasts," immigrants, Jews, gays, congressmen, the President, and pretty much everyone else who does not fit his narrow definition of "human." His greatest claim to fame was calling for the murder of federal district judge Joan Lefkow. The FBI later interviewed him following the murders of her mother and husband on February 28, 2005, but did not find reason to detain him further.
The drama began when Turner published home telephone numbers of some minors who prank called his radio show earlier in the month. After the thick-headed Turner refused to remove this information, the offended pranksters went on the offensive, seeking the assistance of friends on sites such as 4chan.org, 7chan.org, and Digg.com.
In retaliation, they began a campaign of DOS attacks and bandwidth flooding against Turner's site, causing him to shut down the site many times over the last week. Lunkheaded Hal, though, appears to be his own worst enemy, as he continues to egg on the hackers. He published a bloody photo of one of the "attackers" last week - claiming the hacker was the victim of a brutal beating by skinheads allied to him - but it turned out that Hal simply Googled "bloody head" and posted a heisted photo.
Hal now faces a tough decision: shut down the site, thus losing the $40,000 to $60,000 he claims to make from listener donations, or keep the site up, and pay the bandwidth fees to the company that hosts his site.
One might almost feel sorry for the not-so-bright Turner, given his seeming inability to learn from experience.
Given his penchant for promoting violence, Hal will not be missed should this be his last gasp. We are witnessing - in real time - Hal Turner spinning downward, swirling counterclockwise into the virtual sewer of Internet hate, caused by a group of teens with PCs and some serious hacking skills.