Person(s) of the Year – the 99% and Anonymous

Back in the 1990?s, some of my brothers geeker fans figured out how to spin the meter on the Time Magazine “Person of the Year”  poll and put him in third place.  So for a while the poll read:

  1. Jesus Christ
  2.  Adolph Hitler
  3. John Flansburgh

I was impressed that Christ made it to the list, given he was not even born in this millenium and of course surprised that Hilters followers had, however briefly managed to get his name so far up  - at least he was the right century.  My mother made a screen shot of this listing and saved it.

This year Time Magazine is learning from its past mistakes and it is no longer accepting write-in ballots (back when my brother was on the poll, anyone could be suggested -  obviously). Instead, Time has chosen the 34 candidates and you can vote “Yes” or “No” on them.

And the current leader, much to my glee is “the 99%” with 46K votes, nearly 10K more than some soccer player i have never heard of who was number 2.  And similarly the most “no” votes went to the 1%

But much more interesting is the places that were held by Anonymous.  Third from the top (after this soccer player) and 7th from the top of “no’s” list, right after the 99% (clearly the 1% is paying people to vote against their own best interests).

Times short description asks “Did Anonymous really threaten a Mexican drug cartel?”  This question is stupid, because the “anyone can join” clause necessitates this being true, given someone claiming to be anonymous did threaten the most brutal drug cartel in Mexico, something virtually no one dares do.  And then they backed down, after their kidnapped friend was returned.

Anonymous is the mysterious step-sister of Occupy.  It uses a dynamic decision making method, but it does not rely on reaching consensus to move.  It is the other flavor of anarchism, were little groups can work together and groups that disagree can share a name inside the Anonymous tent.

What is clear is that radical movements (both virtual and physical) have emerged in the last year.  To me this looks like a lot more tools and a lot more allies.