Since the tragic shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, most of the country has responded with prayer, grief, and calls for dialogue on gun control and mental illness.
A small subset of the population, however, has used it as an excuse to become the world's worst people, starting Twitter accounts supposedly owned by Adam Lanza and posting all kinds of truly awful stuff to them. (Yeah, this is one of those posts. If you're valuing your faith in humanity today, may we advise bypassing this one?)
Web vigilantes like Anonymous have been using their hacking powers to try to expose who these idiots are in real life, but in the process, they ended up making a huge mistake and putting some innocent folks in St. Charles through a harrowing evening of threats. That includes a 77-year-old lady.
First of all, it gives us absolutely no pleasure to introduce you to the now defunct Twitter account "@blastinkids." (We told you this was going to be awful.) The avatar was the now famous black-and-white photo of Adam Lanza and the tweets were written in his imaginary voice. They are all completely awful and don't deserve to be quoted here. If you're dying of curiosity, knock yourself out.
@blastinkids is sadly just the most recent account of its kind. Yahoo lauded a hacker who goes by "The Jester" for warning Twitter's corporate offices about a similar account called "@z0mb13d" and then going on the offensive, figuring out who the owner of the account was and posting personal information about him. The Jester and Anonymous have also been hacking and releasing private data about the Westboro Baptist Church members, after they announced they were traveling to Newtown to picket funerals.
While it can be fun imagining some little weasel freaking out once his troll mask has been ripped off, that's only if the intel is good. In this case, it was very, very bad.
Sometime on Monday, the forces of vigilante web justice declared war on @blastinkids. It's not clear who exactly obtained the info, but by that evening a full profile of the user was available online. Anonymous minions and fans began spreading the information across the web. The person named was 32-year-old "Jacob Dean Douglas," supposedly a resident of O'Fallon. A profile on the website Pastebin provided a phone number, address, links to all his social media accounts (including another gem, the incredibly racist @RabbiJewey), and the name, address, and phone number for his job.
The attack successfully did one thing -- all the social media accounts including @blastinkids and @RabbiJewey have gone dark. Unfortunately, it appears the rest of the information was wrong.