Brian Knappenberger's new film "We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists" screened as part of the Crawford Family Forum series at the studios of KPCC-FM in Pasadena last night after a discussion session with the film's writer/director as well as Community activist Manuel Criollo and Internet activist Gregg Housh who was featured in the movie. The film has so far received rave reviews at film festivals in Canada and England as well as here in the U.S. including the infamous South By Southwest Music and Film Festival in Austin, Texas.
The film brilliantly covers the history of hacktivism, a unique form of activism, which was actually created in the 1950's yet has much of it roots coming from the sit-ins of the 1960's. It also covers the humor of popular websites such as 4Chan and b. The primary focus, however is the effectiveness of Anonymous, the global cyber hacktivist group known for its' online attacks on the Church of Scientology and Sony, on Pay Pal, Mastercard, and Amazon after denying services to whistle-blower Wiki-Leaks as well as what Knappenberger in the discussion session called 'the tech support' for the Arab Spring and the Occupy Wall Street Movements.
The film, which the director indicated afterwards is technically still in the editing and tweaking process, is a must see for activists everywhere. It is a testimonial to the fact that the times and our global politics have certainly changed while a new culture is being created at the same time. There likewise continues to be many challenges and problems and a handful of people have been arrested, but thankfully Anonymous, as well as Occupy, shows no signs of slowing down.
No official premiere is scheduled at the time of this writing, but I have no doubt that this film will make a big splash when it does open up to a wide release.