Hive-minded Anonymous, the anarchic online mischief-making outfit, has formed a political wing.
"We are transitioning from attacking the system from the outside to restructuring it from the inside," the bunch said in a statement emailed to thinq_
"There are people from all political parties that support Internet freedom and civil rights," they wrote. "Although these people support our goals, they were averse to the tactics we used to advance them. Today, we are founding an Anonymous-affiliated political party. Our representatives will advocate for the internet and civil rights overlooked by other political parties of the world. We will do so legally, for the benefit of all people."
The statement continues: "This political organization will begin a legitimate movement. Anonymous is now open to a wider variety of people, not just hackers and tech-savvy people on the Internet. All those who support Internet freedoms and individual rights will join our ranks.
"When we become a political force, we will have a legitimate impact on public policy. We will span across more than just governments. We will be directly involved in the political process, while fighting the corrupt practices that pervade it, and will use it to support individual freedoms.
It looks like the Anon Party will be the hacking collective's political wing - a bit like the IRA's Sinn Fein.
A clarification on the Anon Party's blog (opens in new tab) states: "This is a political advocacy group. Its mission is to provide anonymous with legal channels with which it can fight for its goals of internet freedom and civil rights, as these legal channels are what anonymous is most lacking at the moment. It also exists so that those who agree with anonymous's goals, but disagree with its methods, are able to get involved."
It suggests Anonymous won't give up on its methods just yet.
"There will be a day when Anonymous will no longer have to wear masks to support freedom. On that day we will have won. The formation of this party brings us one step closer to seeing that day."
"We were Anonymous", they write.
Here's the video: