Barrett Brown is a US journalist and the founder of Project PM, a crowd-sourced investigation into the cyber-industrial complex who was imprisoned for charges relating to the 2011 Stratfor hack.. He was described as an unofficial spokesperson for Anonymous before he renounced his ties to the collective in 2011. He’s written two books, in addition to several articles about politics and journalism in the digital age. In 2012, the FBI raided his house, and later that year Barrett was indicted on 12 federal charges. The most controversial charge, linking to the hacked data, was dropped, but in 2015 Brown was still sentenced to 63 months in prison. Reporters Without Borders cited Barrett’s prosecution among its reasons for the United States dropping 14 spots on its press freedom rankings in 2014.
On 16 July 2015, the Courage Foundation announced that Barrett is the organization’s fifth beneficiary. Courage relaunched Brown’s site with a new overview of Barrett’s case and Project PM’s work, in addition to compilations of Barrett’s journalism, books, legal documents and media appearances.
In addition to legal and commissary fees, Barrett was ordered to pay $890,250 in fines and restitution as part of his sentence. Barrett urgently needs your support.
Barrett was released from prison to a halfway house on 29 November 2016. In addition to his column for D Magazine, Barrett is now writing a “combination memoir/manifesto” and working on Pursuance, a software platform that he designed to help journalists, researchers, and activists collaborate.