Is this my imagination, or are we entering an era (at least on the Internet) where vigilante justice is the primary mode of law enforcement?

Part of me sees some good in this, actually - citizens enforcing their own justice. But the civil libertarian in my wonders what ever happened to "innocent before proven guilty"? As the Wired articles point out, a false accusation can literally ruin lives. The problem is that an accurate accusation can save them...

The older I get the more the world resembles my beard - gray. Oh, for the black and white clarity of my youth! When Right was obvious and Evil could be completely destroyed, if only we'd set our minds to it.

A pair of coders with a deep hatred of software pirates have gone public with a months-old experiment to trick file sharers into running custom spyware they wrote that scolds users and phones home to a server.

(link) [Slashdot]

Posing as children, members of Perverted Justice haunt chat rooms looking for would-be child molesters. Their goal is to catch sexual predators in the act, but critics say their aggressive tactics may undermine police efforts. A two-part series by Julia Scheeres.

(Part One) (Part Two) [Wired News]

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