A Twitter account for hacktivist movement Anonymous has been hit by allegations of in-fighting, backstabbing and missing fundraising donations.
According to International Business Times, Christopher Banks (aka Jackal) has been accused of stealing $35,000 (£20,720) from a fundraising campaign which was designed to help build a new website for the “Your Anonymous News” account. It claimed that in early 2013, Jackal and other prominent people running the account decided that they wanted to build a website with the goal of creating “a weekly news show, provide embedded coverage of direct actions, and run a new website to help ignite protest and DIY journalism around the world”, and raised $54,668 in weeks.
However the total amount of money accounted for was $19,959, meaning that $34,709 remains unaccounted for. This led to the cyber equivalent of mud-slinging with wild rumour and speculation being thrown around on social media channels over the past few days, with a statement attempting to explain the situation.
Dell Cameron, a reporter with the Daily Dot and someone who had been involved with the Anonymous movement since the Arab Spring, said he had personally asked Banks 12 times where the money is, and each time he has refused to give an answer. So far, Banks has remained silent on Twitter about anything to do with this debacle.
Cameron claims he was threatened by Tor Ekeland, another involved in the movement, who likened the in-fighting over the @YourAnonNews account to The Lord of the Rings. “It drives people crazy, they get greedy for it, everyone wants it,” he said.
Cameron said: “At the end, this is not about Anonymous, this is about a group of people fighting over a social media account. These are grown people squabbling like kids over the equivalent of a toy in the sandbox.”
The statement said: “This has been an exhausting and highly stressful process, and we understand that tempers got frayed. We’re not sure where we’ll go from here. But, given that our intention was always to be merely custodians of a ship that will always be of and for Anonymous, we hope that you’ll help us decide.”