The Internet Defense League, a shadowy collective of privacy-protecting web pioneers with a stated goal of saving our beloved tubes from corporate malfeasance and governmental snooping has been quietly assembling in the wake of several high-profile attacks on the web we know and love over the past few years.
The Internet Defense League did not exist formally to defend the web against the two-headed threats of SOPA and PIPA, or their evil legacy, CISPA. All three were veiled moves to restrict the power of individuals in the web or hand it over to larger, more moneyed interests in the name of protecting profits, and an rag-tag response from the biggest names in the web managed to halt the progress of SOPA earlier this year — but the battle is far from over and many would say it has just begun.
Of course, each battle waged by grassroots fighters like the Internet Defense League makes the enemy — the kind of people who fought Net Neutrality and have been basically trying to claim the internet and any money that is made off it as their own since the first modems downloaded the first 8-bit porn — craftier, sneakier and more aggressive.
And to nerds, the type that live on the web, what is a more fitting symbol for such a band of defenders, forced to act quickly and cleverly, than from Batman? The Internet Defense League has been likened to a “a bat-signal for the Internet” basically since its inception, and the people behind the initiative are using the new Batman release to piggyback some exposure for their important work.
On Thursday night, at showings across the US, Internet Defense League representatives (they are recruiting on their website) are projecting the newfound cat spotlight, much like the bat signal, on buildings and across the night sky. The IDL explains:
“Parties like this are being planned in San Francisco, New York, Washington, DC, London and Ulaar Bataar, Mongolia (!) and a few more we haven’t decided on yet. If you’d like to host an event in your city but don’t have the funds, email us (include thoughts on the location, the kind of crowd you can draw, and other ideas). If you can self-fund an event in your city, don’t bother donating, just email us.”
If you’d like to get in on the Internet Defense League’s cat spotlighting plot, instructions on how to support the initiative are available on their website.