NPR logo Porn Vs. Kittens: Weighing In On The 4Chan, Tumblr War

Porn Vs. Kittens: Weighing In On The 4Chan, Tumblr War

Over the past couple of days, there's a been a very interesting (and childish) war transpiring on the Internet. It began when the users of 4chan.org, a messaging board where many of the famous internet memes have begun, picked a fight with the micro-blogging site Tumblr.

4chan.org users encouraged each other to fill Tumblr with porn and embark upon a Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, that is overwhelm Tumblr's servers with enough traffic to bring down the site entirely.

The 4Chan crowd termed their attack "Operation Overlord" and in a flyer they distributed digitally they said:

Our attacks and fear campaigns have been working excellently so far. Tumblr has had it too good for too long and now they are finally regretting their cancerous ways. We are trolling them hard. Now have (sic) just have to finally end it all and declare victory.

4Chan is no joke. In the past, its members have taken down the site of the Church of Scientology and even the sites for the Motion Picture Association of America and Recording Industry Association of America.

Just days ago, the FBI announced it was investigating these kinds of digital attacks. CNet reports that participating in a DDoS could mean jail-time.

Still the Tumblr crowd decided to fill 4Chan.org with pictures of kittens and stage their own DDos attack.

As the Atlantic reports for a brief moment, today, the Tumblr crowd brought down 4Chan's website. But for most of today Tumblr has succumbed to 4Chan's attacks.

It all sounds like fun and games, but Joe Coscarelli at the Village Voice sees something deeper in teenagers willing to spend hours working hard for their favorite sites:

Humans are now feeling an allegiance to websites. Photos, marketplace, chat, email, events, all in one place — think about it. It's neo-brand loyalty, but it's not what sort of sneakers you're going to buy, it's how you're going to communicate with the rest of the world. This is more than pictures of cats. Even if you don't care, just be ready.

Plus, Coscarelli adds, we have to remember that these kids will be running the world one day.

Keith Dsouza at Techie Buzz thinks in a battle like this both sides are losers:

The end result is for all to see. Both 4Chan and Tumblr are down and it looks like that they have both lost in this battle...

In the end, these types of attacks are really not worth it and will just make the internet more inaccessible to everyone. Imagine the millions of regular users of Tumblr and 4Chan who will not be able to access their services thanks to the feud run by people who aren’t even concerned about them.

But Valleywag sees some light. It quotes a concilliatory 4Chan user:

EVERYBODY STOP

tumblr is all girls

4chan is all guys

we should [get along in an intimate sense]!