WikiLeaks had a long list of haters for all the concerned party secret documents published on their site. The list of haters has exponentially grown since they published secret U.S. diplomatic cables. They have been ousted by Amazon as their backup hosting provider, Paypal has terminated them and public release documents point to WikiLeaks illegal activities, MasterCard has blocked them, and their site has been hit by denial of service attacks.
I am not a lawyer and wouldn’t pretend to know the law but I do know that institutionalized old media like the New York Times, The Guardian and every established old media group in the world would die to get their hands on secret documents information, publish them and get themselves a pulitzer prize award. A quick search in Wikipedia (source here) lists the following investigative reporters who have won a Pulitzer award:
1964: James V. Magee, Albert V. Gaudiosi and Frederick Meyer, Philadelphia Bulletin, “for their expose of numbers racket operations with police collusion in South Philadelphia, which resulted in arrests and a cleanup of the police department.”
1965: Gene Goltz, Houston Post, “for his expose of government corruption Pasadena, Texas, which resulted in widespread reforms.”
1966: John Anthony Frasca, Tampa Tribune, “for his investigation and reporting of two robberies that resulted in the freeing of an innocent man.”
1967: Gene Miller, Miami Herald, “for initiative and investigative reporting that helped to free two persons wrongfully convicted of murder.”
1968: J. Anthony Lukas, The New York Times, “for the social document he wrote in his investigation of the life and the murder of Linda Fitzpatrick.”
1969: Albert L. Delugach and Denny Walsh, St. Louis Globe-Democrat, “for their campaign against fraud and abuse of power within the St. Louis Steamfitters Union, Local 562.”
1970: Harold Eugene Martin, Montgomery Advertiser and Alabama Journal, “for his expose of a commercial scheme for using Alabama prisoners for drug experimentation and obtaining blood plasma from them.”
1971: William Jones, Chicago Tribune, “for exposing collusion between police and some of Chicago’s largest private ambulance companies to restrict service in low income areas, leading to major reforms.”
1972: Timothy Leland, Gerard M. O’Neill, Stephen A. Kurkjian and Ann Desantis, Boston Globe, “for their exposure of widespread corruption in Somerville, Massachusetts.”
1973: The Sun Newspapers Of Omaha, “for uncovering the large financial resources of Boys Town, Nebraska, leading to reforms in this charitable organization’s solicitation and use of funds contributed by the public.”
1974: William Sherman, New York Daily News, “for his resourceful investigative reporting in the exposure of extreme abuse of the New York Medicaid program.”
1975: Indianapolis Star, “for its disclosures of local police corruption and dilatory law enforcement, resulting in a cleanup of both the Police Department and the office of the County Prosecutor.”
1976: Staff of Chicago Tribune, “for uncovering widespread abuses in Federal housing programs in Chicago and exposing shocking conditions at two private Chicago hospitals.”
1977: Acel Moore and Wendell Rawls, Jr., The Philadelphia Inquirer, “for their reports on conditions in the Farview (Pa.) State Hospital for the mentally ill.”
1978: Anthony R. Dolan, Stamford Advocate, “for a series on municipal corruption.”
1979: Gilbert M. Gaul and Elliot G. Jaspin, Pottsville Republican (Pennsylvania), “for stories on the destruction of the Blue Coal Company by men with ties to organized crime.”
1980: Stephen A. Kurkjian, Alexander B. Hawes Jr., Nils Bruzelius, Joan Vennochi and Robert M. Porterfield, Boston Globe, “for articles on Boston’s transit system.”
1981: Clark Hallas and Robert B. Lowe, Arizona Daily Star, “for their investigation of the University of Arizona Athletic Department.”
1982: Paul Henderson, Seattle Times, “for reporting which proved the innocence of a man convicted of rape.”
1983: Loretta Tofani, The Washington Post, “for her investigation of rape and sexual assault in the Prince George’s County, Maryland, Detention Center.”
1984: Kenneth Cooper, Joan Fitz Gerald, Jonathan Kaufman, Norman Lockman, Gary McMillan, Kirk Scharfenberg and David Wessel, Boston Globe, “for their series examining race relations in Boston, a notable exercise in public service that turned a searching gaze on some the city’s most honored institutions including the Globe itself.”
I find WikiLeaks as great and quick resource for commoners to exercise freedom within the boundaries of responsibility and integrity of its content.
WikiLeaks has not yet been convicted of a crime and vendors like Amazon, MasterCard and Paypal have taken it way too far but not letting the justice system work and decide on the allegations of WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks is just a single client and I see where this vendors are coming from. They would rather axed a single client than be subject to scrutiny by higher officials.
Nonetheless, one has to take his stance on the benefits of WikiLeaks. I believe in the intent and purpose of their organization but I feel they should align themselves with the practices and methods of old media like New York Times and the rest of old media who are praised for exposing secret information to the world as they go through a series of approval processes before something is exposed. I do not know whether WikiLeaks is doing this already but they should make it known that they are no different with investigative reports who have earned respect and accolades.