Doxing has been around for a while. This is where someone releases someone's personal info online with the purpose of harassing or attacking them. It was mainly used by Anonymous and other hackers, but now it is going mainstream, and Twitter seems like the main channel for this stuff.
First there was "Gamergate
"...A woman created a video game that got a lot of good reviews. A jilted ex-boyfriend accused her of sleeping with a bunch of these reviewers to get these positive reviews. Then her personal info was released, and she was harassed so badly by gamers she had to flee her house, change her phone number, etc.
"Journalist" Chuck C. Johnson is taking it to another level. First, the NY Times published Darren Wilson's city and street name of his home (but not the house number). Then he tracked down these journalists' names, home address down to the apartment number, etc. They got harassed and threatened so bad they had to leave their apartments. Now he is trying to track down the identity and personal info of the U of Virginia girl who accused frat members of gang raping her (the one in Rolling Stone magazine
). It turns out her story had a lot of holes in it...It's not clear to me how harassing and threatening her will improve the situation, though.
When did it become acceptable to harass and threaten people like this? I don't agree with what these people ALLEGEDLY did (slept with people for gain, falsely accused someone of rape, etc), but that doesn't make harassing them OK. The NY Times admitted it was an error to publish the info about Wilson - not good enough! They must pay! I think this phenomenon may say more about our society than it does about Chuck Johnson. He'd be harmless if there weren't a horde of bullies sitting there waiting to be activated by his tweets.