No, I don't want to follow the populistic trend to write something about Wikileaks because it is the talk of the town. Neither am I sure if publishing classified political correspondence is really whistleblowing, contributing to reveal abuse, miss-use, corruption or misappropriation - what the original intent of Wikileaks was. Apart from most of what was revealed, does not really come as a surprise to those living with their eyes and mind open in This Brave New World, dominated by the Coca-Cola's, Monsanto's, Cargill's and McDonald's and all other Fine American Products.
However, I do regret the concerted efforts to gag Wikileaks by no matter what means. Be it Amazon Web Services, which hosted Wikileaks for a while, banning the site from its servers, under alleged pressure from the US government, ditto action by EveryDNS, its US-based DNS server (though said because they could not handle the DDOS hacking attempts) and today the blocking of their fundraising through Paypal, the US-(surprise!) based electronic payment service.
And if it would only stay at that level,... but it did not. US' finest, Sarah -OMG- Palin chipped in by saying Assange should be "hunted down like the al-Qaeda leadership". Include also the public call for Assange's assassination by Flanagan, an senior advisor to the Canadian PM, and it leaves me with many questions.
Where does that leave us with freedom of speech? Is that only valid if we say what "those in power" approve of? Are the main stream media that controlled, for independent whistle-blowing sites to become this popular, and -in my opinion- a public must-have? And if things are leaked, to what efforts will the governments go to stop the leaks. ...As if with the current social media, they could ever stop them...
Update Dec 6 2010: All of that was written before Wikileaks today's publication of worldwide installations the US considers critical to its security and the public health of US citizens. To me, this is no long whistle-blowing, but a cheap way of targeting a state by revealing classified information.
If anyone (within a government, company, organisation) would publish any document not meant for the general public, claiming to whistle-blow or hiding behind freedom of speech, then we're in for an interesting twist. The right to freedom of speech, also comes with the obligation of using common sense, respect and ethics.
Cartoon by Samir Alramahi/Toonpool discovered via The Rag Blog