It was about ten days ago when I saw the job opening at Booz Allen Hamilton, a Department of Defense contractor, for Information and Cyber Warfare Expert, a field in which I have a “particular set of skills.”
Over the course of my film and activism career, I’ve become a master of using social media to cause civil unrest, and social reform, all across the country. When I saw the Russian “election meddling” campaigns, the structure of their efforts, the way the campaigns were used to manipulate large amounts of low information voters, on both sides, I knew exactly what had happened, and how it was pulled off.
Also being the target of internet harassment, for many years, and having disinformation campaigns orchestrated against me; a series of over thirty websites and blogs that are being run about me, on WordPress.com, as a part of a large black hat SEO campaign used to discredit me, has taught me the art of information warfare, and how disinformation can be used to manipulate an entire population of unsuspecting people.
I started preparing a cover letter, explaining my qualifications, providing examples of my use social media to disrupt the entire functioning of small towns, for days on end, while fighting a cause, like when I exposed a corrupt economic deal in Front Royal, Virginia, involving the redevelopment of the still polluted Avtex EPA Superfund site.
Like many towns before, my campaigns to educate the citizens about this fraudulent deal reached 80% of the population of the town, in less than 24 hours, and lit the place up like a sizzling road flare.
My campaigns caused great controversy, to the point that I had to hire a bodyguard to go to the grocery store with me, due to a string of repeated and aggressive death threats I received, after publishing. I ended up with numerous false news articles about me, citizens came to my home with cameras and posted photos of my house all over the internet, my car was a damaged, trash was thrown all over my yard, to the point that I eventually lost my home.
I am more than aware of my ability to cause mayhem, using social media, along with the consequences of expressing one’s political opinions in public, a lesson that YouTube just learned, in the hardest way possible.
I’ve come to a mentality of if you can’t beat ’em, join em. I’m a loyal American citizen, I want to see positive change, and restructuring of our system of government, so that it operates better and serves the people. I am not an anti-government nut job, as some have portrayed me. If I can use my skills to benefit the security of this nation, I’m more than happy to officially offer my loyal services to the US war effort, as I already offer the same services privately, to numerous interests.
In my cover letter, as a thought experiment, I sought to provide an example of how social media could potentially be used to cause YouTube to remove the ban on certain gun videos, which is a current hot button issue, by creating a civil war in their parking lot.
I detailed out how using Facebook’s Events system, I could set up an anti-gun rally using one Facebook Fan Page, with an audience of the most far left, extremist, crazy people I can find (read: anyone who is a part of Antifa), and then set up a pro-gun rally at the same location on the same date, using a Facebook Fan Page with an audience of ultra right wing gun nuts, causing a real life violent clashes at YouTube, and Google’s headquarters, much like Russia caused violence to erupt in Texas, during the election, using the very same tactics.
The resulting violence would cause YouTube and Google to understand there would be consequences for trying to censor such a powerful group. Once the reality set in that their desire to express political opinions, by censoring large groups of people, was going to cause them real world violence , they would remove the ban on the gun videos, I theorized, which is something they should probably do, in order to safeguard themselves from further incidents.
After writing all of this out, I called my business partner, who works for Facebook, but also used to work at Google. I ran my interest in applying for the Booz Allen Hamilton by him, and made the comment, “It will be less than a week before there is a shooting at YouTube, over this,” as we changed the subject to how YouTube had banned bump stock videos, which as a liberal, I completely disagree with.
I made the eerily creepy joke – now in hindsight – “Billy forgot he’s not on the internet.”
Yesterday, after I read about the shooting, I told him, “We’ll never get accurate reporting on this shooting, because it’s Silicon Valley, the media kisses their asses, and if you notice, no media outlets are pointing out that this shooter’s response was directly related to censorship. Once she saw YouTube openly admitting to censoring people, she had all the proof she needed. She fought with them and realized that the only way to get them to listen was to show up at their office with a gun. They asked for this to happen, with their own actions and arrogance.”
My opinion, after watching all of this happen, is that this woman didn’t just commit a shooting, she fired the first shots in a real world war against Silicon Valley, that’s going to continue, until these companies change the way they do business.
Does Silicon Valley Target Activists?
I know exactly what it’s like to be targeted by tech giants. In 2013, YouTube banned my 2013 homelessness documentary Blame Reagan, for “inappropriate content.” Even though they’d recently featured a live murder on their site, for months on end, as thousands of users complained, they decided to ban my documentary meant to help homeless people, because the actual reality of a homeless person, apparently, was somehow more graphic than a video of man actually cutting a guys head off and mailing it to Canadian Parliament.
It was only a few months later when I began writing about the 23 Superfund toxic waste sites in Silicon Valley, plumes of polluted ground water, from Mountain View, to a toxic waste dump that is 4.6 miles from Mark Zuckerberg’s house.
In 2014, after I started exposing these toxic waste sites, using my social media skills, I suffered a wave off aggressive retaliation from numerous tech companies, whose employees live, and work, right on top of ground very water plumes of Trichloroethelyne I had been trying to expose.
My Google and other internet search results were filled with disinformation, as a part of the aforementioned information warfare campaign I have endured, by a still hidden political opponent, who is also well trained in the art of information warfare.
My PayPal account was shut off, due to a provision in their contract that states, “We reserve the right to shut off any account which we deemed to be used for reasons we disagree with.” My Change.org petitions were deleted. Wordpress has flatly refused to remove a web of thirty blogs being used to publicly harass me, many of which feature crimes committed against me, like break-ins to my home and vehicles. GoDaddy deleted my hosting account.
My LinkedIn account, with connections to hundreds of journalists and scientists, was deleted after I sent an InMail to an FBI agent, asking for assistance with the attacks from Silicon Valley.
In the most aggressive act of retaliation, I was at Google’s Quad campus, on the site with a badge, when my business partner and I were attacked by security, right in front of 200 other Google employees. They dragged Alex away, for questioning, and then tried to illegally detain me.
You won’t find a police report about the incident, but for a moment of my life, I was trapped inside the boundaries of a multi-national corporation, surrounded by security, simply because I had published the content of the ground water under the very Google complex where I was standing during the attack. I actually had a legitimate moment in my life where I had to outrun Google security, racing through the streets of Mountain View, in my BMW, like some kind of dark hero from an action film.
The other day, when I read what happened at YouTube, I was left with many conflicting feelings on the subject matter.
All Actions Have Consequences, No Matter Who You Are
Silicon Valley has all but eliminated me from existence. Do you know how hard it is to buy a house and car when your bank account, that has been in good standing for over four years, that has $500,000 worth of deposits, is suddenly deleted?
Even though I qualify for home loans, I can’t buy a home, or a new car at a reputable dealership, because I have no way to show the years of deposits and income, leaving me constantly placed into bad situations where I have to buy from disreputable people who try to take advantage of me. As I type this, I have no home, because a slime ball in Irvine sold me a house filled with bed bugs, after I could not secure traditional financing for a house. I have a new car, but I was forced to buy from a Buy Here Pay Here place, so it’s sitting in the shop, right now, as I’m stuck with a sub-prime car loan, even though I have good credit.
My life and career have been crushed by Silicon Valley, for political reasons, so when I saw an active shooter, a small part of me couldn’t help but utter a macabre laugh, because as they’ve crushed my life, I have constantly – for years – pointed out to employees at Google, YouTube, WordPress, GoDaddy, LinkedIn, that someday what they’ve done to me, they’re going to do to the wrong person, and it’s going to result in real world violence. Yesterday, that happened.
I feel bad for the people that got shot, don’t get me wrong, because they ended up collateral damage in what was the first shots fired in a long war against the billionaires that are wrecking this planet and our country, with their products.
Just to be absolutely straight up, like what’s happened to me in my own life, as a result of my political speech, you reap what you sew, and YouTube got a small taste of my world this week. Until Silicon Valley accepts the fact that they’re no longer untouchable, nothing will ever change, and the acts of aggression will only get worse, especially now that someone has gone out of their way to publicly create that precedent.
My prediction is that as long as Silicon Valley continues to trample on the rights of US citizens, that more violence will happen, and that this woman who snapped and started killing people is only the first in a long line of coming offensives against tech giants. And while I absolutely can’t condone those actions, nor would I ever participate in them, this is what lies ahead.
In closing, someone needs to step and say that the YouTube ban on gun videos caused this shooting, indirectly, and I’ll be glad to be the one to say it, because what else can Silicon Valley possibly take from me for speaking my mind?
Matthew Berdyck is an experimental filmmaker, activist, musician, and US travel expert, most notably known for his national environmental campaigns. His writing pieces on the subject of toxic waste have been read by millions of people in The United States. He is the founder of SuperfundResearch.org, an environmental actvism and EPA watch dog group.