I saw this line in the Economist “In July, Julian Assange told The Economist that Wikileaks alone decided what was worth publishing and what harmful information needed to be cut out. “”
I’m wondering if having a single Wikileaks gives too imbalanced a picture too, and what we need is a plethora of Leaks platforms?
Was also thinking about the ethics of the whole thing.
From an ethics standpoint, do govts & militaries should have the right to hold info secret?
i’m inclined to say “yes” , purely for security reasons
Yet i’m completely aware that the very mechanisms that allow govts to keep security info secret, are also being used to keep other info that ought to be disclosed, secret. Which is why we all love WikiLeaks.
But how does a Leaks platform decide what ought to be released and what ought to be secret? Because everyone has a different view/criteria? And are we really getting more info that’s rightfully ours, or are we just changing censorship masters(from govt to a Leaks platform owner) and allowing more players to fuck around with us to advance their own political agendas?
If info that compromises security is leaked out, who is responsible for that? The govts/militaries? or the people who stole/leaked the info?
Should the govts/militaries be responsible, because it’s their duty to safeguard these security info? I mean, if a Leaks platform could get their hands on it, I’m sure a malicious terrorist could too, and we can be sure the terrorist wouldn’t be announcing it on websites but with bombs. Think about it this way. If you engaged a vendor to keep your organisation’s IT systems secure, and yet your system gets compromised, do you replace your vendor or continue with his service & tell him it’s those hackers who are the arseholes?
On the other hand, we could also argue that the info thieves/leakers are at fault for compromising security too. If a thief breaks into your house, do we haul your arse to prison for using the wrong padlocks, or do we haul the thief to prison?
What if the info both compromises security and exposes abuses at the same time? then what?
The Economist reports that “After a week of clumsy American-inspired attempts to shut WikiLeaks down, it is now hosted on more than 700 servers around the world”.
I suppose, even from a purely pragmatic view point, it’s impractical to practice censorship by going after the people who leak info anymore. Technology and globalisation has changed all that. Even Singapore, with is wildly successful censorship practices, is not immune when leaking goes global.
Just from a purely pragmatic view point, the info owners that need to secure info better, and politicians need to take a lesson from religious leaders — “God” is always watching. It’s a lovely world we live in, and it’s beautiful to see how advances in technology and systems have turned the moral gatekeepers from “the gods” to “Big Brother” and now, finally, to “the people”