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Stephen Canning

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Banned From Google+, Anonymous Plans the Anti-Social Network

Posted: 07/18/11 08:08 AM ET

In October 2009, Google launched Wave. The current launch, Google's third foray into "social", is nothing like Wave, except for the clamor to "let me in!" But it appears not everyone shares in the enthusiasm for Google+ with web hackivists Anonymous who have allegedly been banned from Google's attempt at building a social networking service.

They now say they are setting up their own rival service named Anon+. Google decided to oust youranonnews from Google+ over what it said was content it found objectionable. The headless collective claims that a number of accounts connected with it were also deleted. The story so far is that Anonymous -- or someone associated with Anonymous, or someone cynically riding on the back of Anonymous, who knows? -- has set up a site that will offer some kind of social network.

According to TechSpot, the idea (and the "Alpha" Website, anonplus.com) arose when Google+ allegedly banned an unknown number of Anonymous members. The Anonplus site is couched in Anonymous's usual grandiose phraseology -- "they will know that we have arrived. There will be no oppression. There will be no more tyranny. We are the people and we are Anonymous."

Perhaps it is time for a new non-corporate player in the social networking space when Facebook bans a Google+ ad in an instant but then turns a blind eye when it is asked to help deal with abusive commenters (who, for example, infest tribute pages to the dead). Google+ requires a user to agree to 37 extensive privacy statements. It appears from the outside that social networks are not just tyrannical, they're also a "confusopoly" whose success depends on nobody being able to decode the rules they've promised to follow.

I do have problems with Anonymous being the group to make an intervention into this space however. With their record of an inability to distinguish between targets, ruining lives of innocent individuals and costing businesses millions.

"This is one social network that will not tolerate being shut down, censored, or oppressed - even in the face of blackout. We the people have had enough...enough of governments and corporations saying what's best for us - what's safe for our minds," the post on youranonnews.tumblr.com reads.

Google+ will definitely not be catering to anonymity anytime soon. The burgeoning circle-obsessed service has already faced heated identity issues as it forces users to ditch pseudonyms and fake monikers in favour of real-world names.

 

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