• We Are Anonymous

  • Inside the Hacker World of LulzSec, Anonymous, and the Global Cyber Insurgency
  • By: Parmy Olson
  • Narrated by: Abby Craden
  • Length: 14 hrs and 16 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (1,203 ratings)

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We Are Anonymous  By  cover art

We Are Anonymous

By: Parmy Olson
Narrated by: Abby Craden
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Publisher's Summary

We Are Anonymous is a thrilling, exclusive expose of the hacker collectives Anonymous and LulzSec.

In late 2010, thousands of hacktivists joined a mass digital assault by Anonymous on the websites of VISA, MasterCard, and PayPal to protest their treatment of WikiLeaks. Splinter groups then infiltrated the networks of totalitarian governments in Libya and Tunisia, and an elite team of six people calling themselves LulzSec attacked the FBI, CIA, and Sony. They were flippant and taunting, grabbed headlines, and amassed more than a quarter of a million Twitter followers. The computer security world - and world at large - realized quickly that Anonymous and its splinter groups are something to treat with dead seriousness.

Through the stories of three key members, We Are Anonymous offers a gripping, adrenaline-fueled narrative in the style of The Accidental Billionaires, drawing upon hundreds of conversations with the members themselves, including exclusive interviews. By coming to know them - their childhoods, families, and personal demons - we come to know the human side of their virtual exploits, and why they're so passionate about disrupting the Internet's frontiers.

©2012 Parmy Olson (P)2012 Hacette Audio

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What listeners say about We Are Anonymous

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting book, AWFUL narration

What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

It's a fast-paced, detailed description of an interesting phenomenon that morphed so quickly the news was (and possibly still is) far behind the truth. It is written to be "thrilling" but there is also enough meat to keep it from being mindless.

How could the performance have been better?

The mispronunciation of numerous words combined with the inconsistent, fake accents almost ruined this book for me.

19 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Awesome book. Felt like a hacker fiction novel!

I was blown away by how exciting the author made this story. It's a fascinating look into the underground hacker culture and a wake up call to anyone who hasn't paid much attention to computer security in the past. You'll learn about the basic methods hackers use, including technical hacks and social engineering.

The story was very approachable, Parmy Olson does a good job explaining everything tech related in a fair amount of detail without making the embarrassing mistakes that many journalists make when reporting on technology. (I'm hardly all-knowing in this area, but I'm a programmer and pretty tech savvy, so I probably would have caught any obvious flaws)

The narrator does a wonderful job adding life to the dialogue and uses different voices for each character when reading chat logs and interview quotes. I almost felt like I was listening to a Stieg Larsson book. If you're at all interested in hackers or how a couple kids from different sides of the planet can take down the websites of massive corporations, get this book!

17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good book but horrible performance

The narration of this book is just atrocious.

Faking accents in a nonfiction book is unnecessary and the correct pronunciation of words like "Linux" and other terms relating to technology and the internet should be a requirement for narrating books like this.
Especially when you have a book where most of the audience knows the correct wording of phrases and pronunciation of these terms.

So all in all: compelling content let down by irritating narration.

15 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Excellent read, terrible narration

If you could sum up We Are Anonymous in three words, what would they be?

Parmy Olson does an excellent job of wading into the shady world of anon and lulzsec - there are plenty of flaws, however, it is definitely worth the time and far better than I anticipated.
The narrator, Abby Craden, on the other hand, is awful. She finishes every sentence with an affected, snide lilt and she mispronounces words on a regular basis. The worst distraction, however, are the array of dreadful accents she employs to differentiate the characters. It just about ruins the story.

11 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Much ado about very little

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Abby Craden?

Anyone who didn't try to use ridiculous accents. The character who is supposed to be Scottish got a Liverpool accent. The guy from the Lower East side of Manhattan (of Puerto Rican heritage) got a strange mix of Eastern European and Latin accents. It was painful to listen to.

Any additional comments?

I was interested in reading about Anonymous because it's a subject that we need to understand in the modern, internet dependent world. What I realized early on is that the majority of these "cyber hacks" (I won't glorify them by calling them "terrorists") are a bunch of anti-socials with physical defects that force them to spend the majority of their time in their rooms with their computers because they can't "make it" out in society. Anonymous and movements like theirs are literally culminated in online chat rooms. I was sort of hoping to find that they were a group of geniuses who had honorable goals, and used their technical knowledge to change the world. But alas, they are no more than ultra geeks with nothing better to do, and are looking for some kicks in between playing online video games.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Distracting Narration

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

The narrator used various voices with a wide range of accents when speaking what a character would say. It was distracting and frustrating, taking away from being absorbed into the story.

How could the performance have been better?

Just narrate the book, do not turn it into a play.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

incredibly close up look

Parmy Olson provides an incredibly close up and detailed view into these very specific hacker groups. She illuminates the personalities, strategies, tactics and targets involved. Solid narration too.

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Reads Almost Like A William Gibson Novel

What made the experience of listening to We Are Anonymous the most enjoyable?

A fascinating tale of real life cyberpunks. This book made me like Anonymous and Lulzsec more than I already did.

Any additional comments?

The book is well written and the narrator does a great job. This i a very good listen.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Good book, distracting performance

At first, the book was too much like a novel for me - talking about people's inner feelings and such - which is by my preferred kind of book. It seemed to fiction-like. Even though, I think most people enjoy that. I got used to it and found that the author did a good job of conveying the IRC goings-on in an engaging way.

Now, the performance by the narrator....eh. I don't like to give negative reviews but man, she did not-so-great accents and read things in a way that seemed kind of cliché. I did consider returning the book but listened through because the book itself was good. I won't listen to this reader again though.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting, but accents are annoying

A fascinating tale, although written perhaps a little too breathlessly (there are lots of moments where the author goes into the moment and semi-fictionalizes what people were feeling or thought, which feel unfactual). In addition the voice actor performing the book tends to use put-on accents (southern, British, etc) that are really quite bad,. Would prefer if she'd just read it straight.

Still, on the whole, the book tells a interesting and rounded story and its sense of research is to be commended. Would recommend.

2 people found this helpful