Wikileaks and the Guardian

Can someone tell me the difference between Wikileaks publishing US government cables and the Guardian publishing the same cables. So far as I can see, neither organisation has actually leaked anything, they are both publishing the same material that has been leaked by someone else.

I’m struggling a bit to see why the editor of the Guardian should not be subject to the same legal processes as those which might come Mr Assange’s way. I’m also a little puzzled as to why there might have been attempts to force various commercial organisations no longer to support Wikileaks (and subsequent reprisals from online activists in revenge) but apparently no such attempts to do the same with the Guardian.

What is it that I am missing here?


  1. richard says

    I don’t think there is a clear answer to that but one might take a guess. The Guardian might argue that what they are reporting is “honest comment” from a known source. Admittedly that is based on a recent Supreme Court judgment about defamation but the judges acnowledged a need for the law to evolve to meet modern media communications. National security arguments are a safer legal bet; ie interdict. That would open up a delicious can of worms for media types. The bully boy tactics of indiscriminate pressure being placed on commercial entities without a consistent
    legal approach suggests a reluctance by authorities to enter a Kafka-esque nightmare. Enter the tactics of personal discreditation. Mr Putin made some interesting observations today about current democracy and double standards.

  2. Hermano David |Brother Dah•veed says

    To me, the original sin is the collusion between WikiLeaks and the disgruntled US soldier stationed in Afghanistan. What periodicals around the globe are now doing is perusing the published documents and bringing to light their contents, something any one of us with the time could certainly now do for ourselves.

    The pressure by governments to make WikiLeaks exposition more difficult is the question of did these businesses, internet data farms, domain name venders and financial institutions, look the other way and allow violations to their own policies and standards in support of WikiLeaks, another form of collusion? Were these policies and standards to which other clients are stringently held?

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