The stereotype of the "system cracker" or "anonymous" is a white, upper middle class, teenager, sitting alone in their bedroom, with a computer. While there is some truth to this, the recent arrests of alleged "Anonymous" activists reveal some diversity: a few arrestees were women, and most were mid-20s or older. But one thing was common: they were as much working class as middle class.
The new computer-based rebels aren't "rich" or even middle class. One arrestee was a middle-aged woman who worked at a dollar store. This is a poor person.
The press (as well as civil libertarians and liberal activists) forgot that computers have now become one America's cheaper form of entertainment. A computer costs around $100 used, and internet is around $15 to $20 a month. This is cheaper than a newspaper subscription, cable TV, comic books, going to the movies, video games, cell phone service, eating out at a nice restaurant, alcohol, marijuana, etc. (The only cheaper things are magazine subscriptions, free television, and sex.)
The only burden of a computer is on the operator to learn to use it. So, it's probable that nearly all of America's more intelligent working class and poor are now on the internet - even if they forego other entertainment.
TPM reports: "A homeless man upset over an anti-camping law in Santa Cruz took part in a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on the city's computer servers last December, the feds charged Thursday [Sept. 22]."
The man, Christopher Doyon, 45, participated in Peace Camp 2010 in Santa Cruz to protest their anti-camping laws. See the second linked story.
He is accused of launching a distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack on Santa Cruz' website with the assistance of someone accused of being in Anonymous. http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/09/feds_homeless_computer_hacker_launched_anonymous_attack_over_anti-camping_law.php http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/localnews/ci_15619520