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A controversial document leak website

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11.01.2011

Advantages:
everything is out in the open

Disadvantages:
could be dangerous, reliability

Recommendable Yes:

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Wikileaks, a controversial website publishing secret documents which has recently been in the news. Julian Assange is the main spokesperson and editor-in-chief for the website.

--Background (the facts)--
Wikileaks was founded by Assange in 2006 and claims to have been "founded by Chinese dissidents, journalists, mathematicians and start-up company technologists, from the US, Taiwan, Europe, Australia and South Africa". Assange was said to have called himself "the heart and soul of this organisation, its founder, philosopher, spokesperson, original coder, organiser, financier, and all the rest". This leaves the question is he solely to blame? The amount of registered volunteers grew to 1,200 in 2009, although it has not been well known until recently in the news. They publish secret, private and classified documents on their website. Assange has previous experience in computer work including hacking, his stated purpose is to create an open government. But are some things best left private?

Assange was accused of 'committing serious crimes in Sweden. These alleged crimes comprise one count of unlawful coercion, two counts of sexual molestation, and one count of rape. The offences are alleged to involve two women' (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11949771), so is he really a reliable trustworthy source?

--My Opinion (positives and negatives)--
By publishing documents, for example related to the army they are creating a freedom of open knowledge to everyone including the families which helps them understand and have comfort in the knowledge of what their loved ones are subject to. However, this knowledge could also put lives in danger, for example certain locations and so we come to ask the question is it safe to have an 'open government'? As the White House stated the release of the diplomatic cables as "reckless and dangerous".

Is Assange just an egotistical man looking for fame or as many others have tried before to change the rules of society? Yes, things may be kept from us by the government but this may be for our safety. He may appear mainly after himself not passing much care onto the public.

--Conclusion--
In conclusion, in my opinion everyone should be allowed to certain knowledge but perhaps some of it should not be exposed especially if it is going to put lives in danger.
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1st2thebar 11.01.2011 19:22

Assange founded the WikiLeaks website in 2006

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