Networked radicalism

With the global spread of high-speed Internet connections and the relative anonymity afforded by the world’s biggest and busiest sites, extremists have found a new theater to display violence and anti-American propaganda…Until recently, videos shot by terrorist groups were posted predominantly on specialist Internet forums, which often only those knowing what to look for could find. But more are turning to mainstream sites like YouTube, which draw millions of visitors around the world each day. “They can always bring down a video, but it’s very easy to create a new one. It’s like an uphill treadmill for YouTube,” said Sajjan Gohel, director of international security at the London-based Asia-Pacific Foundation, a counterterrorism think tank.

Read this article from WIRED

“We now have a capability of someone to radicalize themselves over the internet,” Chertoff said on the sidelines of a meeting of International Association of the Chiefs of Police.”They can train themselves over the internet. They never have to necessarily go to the training camp or speak with anybody else and that diffusion of a combination of hatred and technical skills in things like bomb-making is a dangerous combination,” Chertoff said. “Those are the kind of terrorists that we may not be able to detect with spies and satellites.”

Read this article from WIRED

It’s easy to argue that the Internet isn’t the problem here, and that’s true—it’s not. The Internet is a tool, and like any tool, it can be abused. But the Internet does provide access to information and ideology that could never have been found in a local library 20 years ago.

Read this item from Ars Technica with commentary from ZDNet.

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Filed under Networks, Technology, our Mirror, The Politics of New Media, Virtual Communities

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