The author is proud, vain, simple-minded, selfish, jaded, misguided, and totally enamored with his/her ideal 'scene' where they get to be the coolest person in the room because they can be an outlaw. You can't just reject all forms of society and pretend to live in your own little world where everything revolves around you and what you want.
We have to accept certain things we don't like because it's the contract we make with our fellow human beings to live together. Yes, i'll pay my taxes. Yes, I will stop at red lights. And no, you cannot steal from me or destroy my property just because you think it's lulzy or because you justify it as part of some cause you have. Something is wrong with this person that they have absolutely no remorse for any collateral damage suffered by his/her actions toward his/her noble cause.
Also, seriously, having a beef with an irc server is like having a beef with a specific bar or restaurant. Just don't go in there if you don't like it.
The 'Happy Hacking' article should just be renamed 'Why Selling Out Isn't As Fun And Cool As Black Hat Hacking'. I'm pretty disappointed in Phrack for publishing crap like these articles.
Sometimes I hear "what's 2600?" "why is it called 2600?" from "security professionals". Woot.
As for not knowing eclectic but important bits of history like "2600" or
even who "Lawnchair Larry" was, experience takes time, and knowledge
takes effort. A good example is that most people don't know all of the
available terminal commands available on a UNIX(-ish including
MacOS/iOS/Android) system, let alone know the reasoning or history
behind all those "funny" command names.
BTW, I always get a giggle out of your HN user name even though the poor
disturbed fellow who tied umteen helium balloons to a lawnchair and
shutdown airspace of Los Angeles for a few hours eventually committed
suicide after receiving his "Honorable Mention" on the Darwin Awards.
Here on HN the confusion is worsened because the definition of "hacker" has shifted from ~"security expert" to ~"technical enterpreuner".
Nothing wrong in redefining terms but we shouldn't be surprised if outside here hacker has another meaning.
In all seriousness, in this day and age of social media, FB, etc. the old school tech mags just aren't well known. I'm really not surprised that even younger security interested people don't know them. 2600, Phrack, and the like just don't end up on people's radars...
I'm not sure why that is.
Now the information out there is so widely available. Given enough time and effort, you can become pretty well-versed based on what's available.
Still, even back then most people weren't aware of Phrack, defcong and 2600. Kevin Mitnick was the only thing people knew of, and that came pretty late. Whereas today if you haven't heard of Anonymous you've been living under a rock.
(Phreaking also has become less relevant with the proliferation unlimited cellphone plans, ubiquitous broadband, and proper encryption of cell calls. I never hear the term 'phreaking' anymore, which was a large part of 'the scene'.)
Overall, I think the spirit of encouraging the'free exchange and discussion of information' has ultimately been successful.
Free exchange of information, security wise, is certainly already a thing of the past. That's not good.
Freedom of information (as I prefer to call it), in general, is more than ever at risk. In France, they're outlawing surfing on websites that can be called "terrorist".
That include documenting yourself on "bad" countries' culture (bad as in your govt does not like them), or of course, reading phrack's art of exploitation.
In Germany using tools such as nmap is outlawed if you're not a security professional.
Not need to get started on China or even the USA.
Then, take a look at Full disclosure's current activity. It's not dying because it's "an old ml". It's dying because people do not want to exchange free information. Who would, when you can sell it hundred thousand of dollars?
(and the answer to that should be somewhere in your soul, right next to Phrack's World News)
And I really don't see how free exchange is a thing of the past when even on HN there are posts and discussions about security. Sure, there are people working against the free exchange of information, but cherry-picking examples to suggest there has been a total reversal or that nothing has been accomplished is neither realistic nor fair.
Fortress phones did not help much either. Of course now even those pay phones are getting removed from a lot of locations.
I hope to see more.
You wanna talk about news for hackers, and not this Bay Area, VC-manipulated, water-downed, same-ol' bullshit? Phrack is real talk. If you want to travel outside of California and actually call yourself a hacker, you're gonna need to read this and as much of the archive as you can. Phrack 0wnz.
We try to keep the old-school badboy ethos from Phrack and 2600, but we write about hacking in a greater sense. Ie hacking the body, hacking relationships, hacking gardening (aka permaculture), hacking one's own psyche, all kinds of fun stuff :)
We aim to be what you would get if you were to put Tim Ferriss and Tony Robbins in charge of 2600 :)
I live in the Bay now, and I am running a start-up project. I think that startups are good!
I'm just coming from a culture where hacker means something very different. In California, it seems to just mean "developer," and HackerNews should probably just be called DeveloperNews, but really it's too late for that now, and not really even worth talking about. Words can mean different things regionally, and that's okay. That's the only point I was trying to make.