Enforcing Crime Control and Hacktivism
This chapter supplements and reinforces the discussion in Chap. 4. Essentially, it assesses the stakeholders and mechanisms facilitating the enforcement of the existing normative rationales and legal tools in relation to hacktivism. This section of the book essentially aims to analyse whether the enforcing actors mitigate or exacerbate the concerns expressed in the previous chapter regarding the legitimacy of the conflict-focused responses that dominant norms and cybercrime laws can generate. It looks into the function of prosecutorial discretion in conjunction with risk-averse and managerial mentalities that underlie it and also analyses the role of guilty pleas in dealing with crime and hacktivism in particular. It then discusses the importance of judicial decision-making and the stifling impact of sentencing guidelines as well as the influence judicial culture can have on decisions that involve politically contestational cyberdeviance. The role of the juries within that system is also discussed. The chapter proceeds with a review of the role of large Internet corporations in collaborating with the authorities regarding surveillance and information sharing in relation to online deviance. The final part focuses on assessing the role of those information gatekeepers in safeguarding the diversity of expression online and the rights of their users and how their policies and actions impact or could impact on hacktivism.