Hero and villain

October 26th, 2011

Assange versus Zuckerberg.

[Via Ghost in the Machine]

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Wikileaks is "transparent," like a cardboard blast shack full of kitchen-sink nitroglycerine in a vacant lot.

December 27th, 2010

Bruce Sterling on the Wikileaks saga:

Assange didn't liberate the dreadful secrets of North Korea, not because the North Koreans lack computers, but because that isn't a cheap and easy thing that half-a-dozen zealots can do. But the principle of it, the logic of doing it, is the same. Everybody wants everybody else's national government to leak. Every state wants to see the diplomatic cables of every other state. It will bend heaven and earth to get them. It's just, that sacred activity is not supposed to be privatized, or, worse yet, made into the no-profit, shareable, have-at-it fodder for a network society, as if global diplomacy were so many mp3s. Now the US State Department has walked down the thorny road to hell that was first paved by the music industry. Rock and roll, baby.

[Via The Null Device]

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The US State Department imitates The Onion

December 8th, 2010

In the month of Wikileaks – when US senators lean on Amazon to stop hosting a web site they disapprove of, online payment processing services suddenly find it inappropriate to continue to service certain customers, and numerous columnists and out of work politicians express the view that Julian Assange should be hunted down and tried for [espionage | treason | insert capital crime of your choice here]1 – life truly does imitate The Onion:

US Department of State

Press Statement

Philip J. Crowley
Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Public Affairs
Washington, DC

December 7, 2010

The United States is pleased to announce that it will host UNESCO's World Press Freedom Day event in 2011, from May 1 – May 3 in Washington, D.C. UNESCO is the only UN agency with the mandate to promote freedom of expression and its corollary, freedom of the press.

The theme for next year's commemoration will be 21st Century Media: New Frontiers, New Barriers. The United States places technology and innovation at the forefront of its diplomatic and development efforts. New media has empowered citizens around the world to report on their circumstances, express opinions on world events, and exchange information in environments sometimes hostile to such exercises of individuals' right to freedom of expression. At the same time, we are concerned about the determination of some governments to censor and silence individuals, and to restrict the free flow of information. We mark events such as World Press Freedom Day in the context of our enduring commitment to support and expand press freedom and the free flow of information in this digital age. [...]

You Couldn't Make It Up…

[Via Making Light]

  1. Crimes against a nation of which he is neither a citizen nor a resident, let's not forget.

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