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The Big Scoop Essay, Research Paper

Hello, my name is Jack Williams. I am a reporter you have been hearing a lot about and this is how I gathered my information for my article on “Computers, Hacking, And USA’s Citizens” that has been causing so much uproar in many states and even in the government. Recently, people have claimed that I fantasized everything in the report and that I should work in the fiction field in stead of journalism, so here is the exact way I received my information for my story. I will start from the top and I will try not to miss a detail so you can fully understand me.

It was the first Friday of July and it was like any typical midsummer evening at 6:00pm. The sun was still out shining down, just turning red for sunset. It was not especially hot, but it was still tee-shirt weather. I walked down the rather clean street towards the Citicorp building, thinking excitedly about what was going to happen at the meeting and about what information I could receive from this expierence. It was not long before I was standing in front of the modern Citicorp building. The building exterior consisted of mainly large glass windows which provided a very vivid reflection of the neighboring buildings, almost camouflaging its presence on the block. I thought of how the buildings appearence is suiting for what is happening inside at that moment. I casually walked into the revolving glass doors that stood at the base of the building. There were plenty of stores to my left and right. They ranged from candy stores selling snickers bars and almond joy to fast food restaurants selling burgers and french fries and all of the had people inside of them, spending the money they just withdrew from the nearby ATM machines and the tellers upstairs. It was the tipical gimick to make people spend their money, let them have easy access to it, so it was nothing surprising to me.

I continued to walk towards the back of the building looking at all the stores to my sides until I reached the very back of the building, right in front of Barnes & Nobles. I saw a crowd of people standing there, all of mixed ages and nationality. None were alike. These were not the normal people you would picture as vivid computer lovers or people who liked to hack. People exchanged disks everywhere in sight. There were all types of people sharing information about everything from the latest computer security weakness or newest computer virii to what new programs were released today. Forty year old men and women in suits and ties standing, talking, and exchanging information with kids age ten to fifteen who were dressed in skater outfits. In other places people from foreign countries spoke with Americans overlooking their differences. They all shared the same interest in hacking and computer technology. They live in their own world where dollars mean nothing and disks mean everything.

I casually walked into the crowd towards a man who seemed rather interesting to me. He was a tall man, about 30. The man was wearing Levis jeans, a clean white tee-shirt that said “duh?” in large straight black letters, and a large red and black side bag full of printed papers. He handed me some paper and told me in a semi-happy voice to take a look at that and that it would explain everything. I threw the paper into my bag saying to my self that this guy belongs in a mental institution if he actually believed that one piece of paper could explain the whole hacker world and I walked on to the other side of the room. There was a kid standing there in the normal baggy pants and tee shirt working on a toshiba laptop. Wanting to get the information I needed for my story, I walked over to the kid and asked him what he was up to and to my surprise he asked me in a deep voice if I was affiliated with any law enforcement agencies such as the F.B.I. or the C.I.A.. I said to myself why would I be with a law enforcement agency, but to get information, I tried to play it out very casually and said told him no, but if I was, I don’t think I would tell him. He said to me that by law, I would be required to tell him the truth on that question if I was a member of a law enforcement agency. I was shocked becuase I did not know about that. He asked me again if I was a member of a law enforcement agency, and I replied that I wasn’t. He said that he didn’t think I was but he is always better safe than sorry. At this point I thought this guy was off the wall crazy or a really well informed kid, but again I reminded myself about the story I was writing. I asked him what he was doing in a nonchalant voice and his response astounded me. He said he was trying to hack a computer server. It was not so much the idea of hacking a server, because I knew everyone in the meeting was looking to do that or to learn how to do that, but it was the way he said it. The way it flowed was as if it was nothing special, nothing that did not happen everyday. This kid seemed to be my story standing live in front of me. I played as what hackers, phreakers (people who play with telephone companies), and software pirates call a lamer, which is someone who is a complete computer idiot or knows very little. I asked him if he tried to break into computer systems often and he replied everyday and that he was usually successful on all of them. He just continued typing his unix commands which went way over my computer training. I figured that he was entranced enough with his hacking that I would be able to ask him a few more questions. I proceeded to ask him about how many American kids and adult like to hack and or phreak, what percentage of hackers were kids and how many were adults and the like. The responses were astounding and I checked with other people on these answers and they turned out to be frighteningly correct. When I asked him, why hackers do what they do, he grabbed my bag and pulled out the paper the man had given me earlier and rudely said that I should read that and leave him alone. I could tell that I had outlived my short welcome being a lamer, so off I went into a secluded corner and read the document which the man had given me. It was written by a hacker called the mentor just a few days before he was sentenced to a jail term, I believe it was a fifty year term so he entitled it The Mentor’s Last Words. It told me about what goes on in a hacker’s mind and why they do it. It also showed me what hackers really are; they are not really criminals, at least not all of them. They are curious and seek knowledge. According to them and this document the true hacker never destroys, just looks. That is the essence of the United States Hacker. He is neither male nor female. He does not age nor does he have a nationality. People must realize most of these people will never meet anywhere except in a virtual chat room and will never hear each others voice. They have no choice but to judge people by what they do and not what they look like or by their age.

The Citizen’s view of hackers is completely distorted. All you see is what the government wants you to see and by know even the most sheltered of American citizens know how deranged the governemt can be. We are afraid of hackers becuase we don’t understand them and I don’t blame you becuase that is human nature to fear what you can not explain. What my article was trying to present was the truth about hackers because the amount that you know is a joke, plain and simple.

This is where I received my story from. Yes it is depressing that more and more people like to hack and phreak, but in a way, it is also good. Now quite frankly I don’t care if you believe me or not and probably if you do believe me you will say you don’t because you are scared to believe me, but that is a battle I can’t put to words as a story nor can I fight it for you. So, having finished my explanation, I say good night and thank you for coming and listening.


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