Top Gear Fans DDoS BBC in Response to Jeremy Clarkson Suspension
Or did they? The BBC has denied any correlation between the suspension of Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson and its website being inaccessible recently. A spokesman told the Daily Mail:
“The website was down for about an hour but it is all back up and running now. […] It was due to an internal system failure, which can happen when we are experiencing too much traffic or if there is an issue with our servers.”
Also read: Anonymous Member To Be Prosecuted
Perhaps there was a great deal of traffic in response to the news that Clarkson had been suspended from Top Gear as a result of a drunken incident where he punched assistant producer Oisin Tymon and called him a name. According to the Daily Mail, he also referenced the fact that Tymon is Irish, making the alleged incident xenophobic in nature. Important to note, the assault was allegedly related to the fact that Jeremy Clarkson had been served a cold plate of food. Yes, you read that right. If the whole thing isn’t fabricated, Clarkson hit the producer because he wasn’t happy with his food.
Anonymous Possibly Involved
Hacktivist group Anonymous threatened to attack the BBC’s online presence if it did not put Clarkson back in his position and reinstate the beloved car program. An apparent member of the group calling himself Guido Fawkes started a petition to have the show put back on the air with its original host. The petition had garnered over half a million signatures at the time of writing.
John Murdoch, a British signatory, said:
He speaks his mind. He’s an original. Makes a change from the usual dull, bland presenters elsewhere on television.
Days later, on the 14th of March, the outage occurred. It was not a sustained outage, and nothing appears to have been lost in the attack. As we’ve written before, distributed denial-of-service attacks do not necessarily require a high level of technical proficiency and often do no lasting damage. Think of it like filling up a subway with mannequins such that no legitimate subway patron has access because of so doing.
Likely Not Over
If Anonymous is serious about taking up this fight to have the show put back the way it was, without any censure of the host, then there will more than likely be more attacks. Again, the BBC itself is denying that the attacks have taken place thus far at all, but the initial attacks could have simply been a trial run to see what kind of mettle the BBC servers had. The group could very well conduct a more serious attack this week or next, pending the results of their on-going investigation into the incident.
As to the victim of the attack, he says he doesn’t remember it happening, and appears by all accounts to be unperturbed by it. This contributes to the sentiment by many fans that the BBC has become overly politically correct and that this action against Clarkson is symptomatic of that.
Featured image from Shutterstock.