“I would like to criticize the press in its handling of the ‘hackers’… misguided use of a computer is no more amazing than drunk driving of an automobile.” – Ken Thompson, Reflections on Trusting Trust
Whether charlatans or middle school script kiddies, the press declares them “elite hackers”. You could use nmap or you could use a visual basic GUI; it’s all the same in Hollywood.
Hacker should mean something. A hacker is not a prankster attacking uneducated users. A hacker is not a person who abuses their knowledge and lords it over others like a child on a playground. A hacker is not somebody who claims another’s hard work as a personal achievement. And a hacker most certainly is not somebody who needs a t-shirt to prove it.
A hacker is inquisitive. A hacker is a free thinker. A hacker uses and abuses computers to do something different. A hacker is an explorer of the digital frontier. A hacker seeks personal betterment. A hacker is an artist.
So let us speak of hackers only where we are understood. We will declare ourselves to be what we are in more syllables than the media can abuse. We will not be infamous and we will not strike fear in the hearts of users. This is not our goal. We instead will disregard the words of luddites and create a world that inspires others to see technology as we do.
Wear this shirt: while playing CTF.
Don’t wear this shirt: to a bar.
This shirt tells the world: I have big words and I’m not afraid to use them.
We call this color: shell black.