Unless you've been under a rock over the last week, you've likely heard about Anonymous, a group of hackers and other Internet citizens who announced an attack against Scientology. It has, so far, been a fairly successful Internet movement; their message reached traditional media within a few days, and people started holding rallies very shortly after their first video emerged.
Anonymous is interesting, not only because of their mission to infiltrate and destroy the Church of Scientology, exposing it as a dangerous cult, bilking people out of their money and their lives, but also because of the very clear, effective message they are communicating through their 'official' press releases. They have also adopted some very intriguing imagery in their releases that I haven't quite figured out. Anonymous's videos make use of a computer-generated voice (which makes sense, given they don't want to be identified and therefore dead-agent/fair-gamed by CoS. In stark contrast with the voice, however, are time-lapsed nature scenes. In the first video, we see the time-lapsed passing of clouds over buildings and in bare sky. The second video again features time-lapse clouds, but eschews the urban images of buildings for a country road, a lake, and a grassy field. Both videos contain ethereal ambient music as a companion to the visual imagery.
I'm not sure why Anonymous has chosen this imagery for their message. Clearly, they could have gone with any imagery given the non-identity of their group. But the ambient music and natural scenes, contrasted with the stilted electronic voice give an overall ominous mood to their message. Is the message directed at the CoS? It would seem so from its content, with messages such as "you cannot hide" and "expect us". The focus on the sky - could it be a subtle jab at the extraterrestrial origins claimed by the CoS? Is Anonymous positioning itself in a "mother nature" role, attempting to take back the artifices of the CoS?
I'll be watching Anonymous with interest over the next few weeks to see if it can maintain its current progress. The Internet - despite its great memory - has a very short attention span after all.