WikiLeaks is a website that publishes anonymous submissions and leaks of sensitive governmental, corporate, or religious documents, while attempting to preserve the anonymity and untraceability of its contributors. Within one year of its December 2006 launch, its database had grown to more than 1.2 million documents. Wikileaks runs on modified MediaWiki software.
- A brown paper envelope for the digital age, Wikileaks.org is now home to more than 1m documents that governments and big business would rather the public did not see. The site – similar to Wikipedia in style, but otherwise independent of it – serves as an uncensorable and untraceable depository for the truth, able to publish documents that the courts may prevent newspapers and broadcasters from being able to touch.
- I do think that at the moment, Wikileaks is the absolute most important project on the globe.
- Jacob Appelbaum (January 20, 2009). "Wikileaks is the absolute most important project on the globe". CAMPERSpeak (www.informationactivism.org). Retrieved on 2009-03-04.
- While journalists should view Wikileaks with some skepticism, it cannot be ignored. Welcome to the brave new world of investigative reporting.
- Anonymous leaking is an ancient art and many websites publish documents from sources they cannot identify. What Wikileaks has done is to professionalise the operation. They have created a standard procedure for receiving, processing and publishing leaks.
- Steven Aftergood of the Federation of American Scientists' (FAS) Project on Government Secrecy — reported in Marks, Paul (May 10, 2008). "A fail-safe way to embarrass people in high places: Whistle-blowers can tell all without being traced, thanks to websites that anonymise their details". New Scientist (Reed Business Information): p. 28, Volume 198; Issue 2655.
- It is unlawful to reproduce or distribute someone else's copyrighted work without that person's authorization. Indeed, courts have entered numerous permanent injunctions and awarded statutory damages and attorneys' fees regarding infringement of these and similar works. ... preserve any and all documents pertaining to this matter...including, but not limited to, logs, data entry sheets, applications - electronic or otherwise, registrations forms, billings statements or invoices, computer print-outs, disks, hard drives, etc.
- Ava Paquette of law firm Moxon & Kobrin, legal letter to Wikileaks from Church of Scientology, after Wikileaks published its "Operating Thetan" documents — reported in Metz, Cade (April 8, 2008). "Scientology threatens Wikileaks with injunction". The Register (www.theregister.co.uk). Retrieved on 2009-03-04.
- Wikileaks' silencing was sought by antidemocratic governments worldwide - including China, whose censors work mightily to block all access to the site. Wikileaks' plug was pulled, ironically, (not in China) but by a federal judge in San Francisco.
- [It] is not and has never been Julius Baer's intention to stifle anyone's right to free speech. Julius Baer's sole objective has always been limited to the removal of these private and legally protected documents from the website," the company said in its statement. However, Julius Baer denies the authenticity of this material and wholly rejects the serious and defamatory allegations which it contains.
- We're very pleased that Judge White recognized the serious constitutional concerns raised by his earlier orders. Attempting to interfere with the operation of an entire website because you have a dispute over some of its content is never the right approach. Disabling access to an Internet domain in an effort to prevent the world from accessing a handful of widely-discussed documents is not only unconstitutional it simply won't work.
- It's not very often a federal judge does a 180 degree turn in a case and dissolves an order. But we're very pleased the judge recognized the constitutional implications in this prior restraint.
- Blocking access to the entire site in response to a few documents posted there completely disregards the public's right to know.
- Ann Brick, attorney for American Civil Liberties Union, statement made before injunction liften in Bank Julius Baer vs. Wikileaks — reported in "Rights groups: Forcing Wikileaks.org offline raises 'serious First Amendment concerns'". Wikinews. February 28, 2008. Retrieved on 2009-03-04.
- If Wikileaks were a print publication, the injunction would be unthinkable. ... What distinguishes this case is that the allegedly intolerable materials were published on the Internet instead of on paper. But that's a poor reason to abandon the principles that protect those who want to publish -- as well as those who want to read. Censorship is censorship, no matter the medium.
- Editorial (February 26, 2008). "Electronic censorship". Chicago Tribune (Chicago Tribune Company): p. 14.
- It wasn't our intention to shut down the Web site. Our intention was to remove the documents.
- Under established First Amendment law, prior restraints, if constitutional at all, are permissible only in the most extraordinary circumstances. In this case, you have court orders that effectively shut down a Web site that has been at the forefront of exposing corruption in governments and corporations around the world and enjoin anyone who reads the order from publishing or even linking to the documents.
- David Ardia, director of Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet & Society's Citizen Media Law Project (CMLP), commenting on Bank Julius Baer vs. Wikileaks — reported in "Preserving Free Speech on the Internet: In a cyberlaw clinic, students help litigate matters of first impression". Harvard Law Bulletin (Harvard Law School). Fall 2008. Retrieved on 2009-03-04.
- I'm really quite surprised at Wikileaks' success. They've done a lot of interesting stuff. It seems people are prepared to take the risk.
- Ben Laurie, member of Wikileaks advisory board — reported in David Leigh and Jonathan Franklin (February 23, 2008). "Whistle while you work: From government to big business, if you have a dirty secret, Wikileaks is your worst nightmare. David Leigh and Jonathan Franklin on the site a US court has tried to muzzle". The Guardian (Guardian Newspapers Ltd).
- Federal District Court Judge Jeffrey White ordered Wikileaks's domain name registrar to disable its Web address. That was akin to shutting down a newspaper because of objections to one article. The First Amendment requires the government to act only in the most dire circumstances when it regulates free expression.
- Editorial (February 21, 2008). "Stifling Online Speech". The New York Times: p. A22.
- [Wikileaks] could become as important a journalistic tool as the Freedom of Information Act.
- We live in a world of secrecy by government, corporations and other institutions which don't want the accountability that comes from transparency. The minute you shine a bright light on their activities, the ethical standards by which they act will rise."
- Sue Dreyfus, Wikileaks advisory board member — reported in Carr, Rebecca (January 22, 2007). "Leak Game Hits Net". Atlanta Journal-Constitution: p. A3.
- Wikileaks is becoming, as planned, although unexpectedly early, an international movement of people who facilitate ethical leaking and open government.
- James Chen, Wikileaks organizer — reported in Williamson, Elizabeth (January 15, 2007). "Freedom of Information, the Wiki Way - Site to Allow Anonymous Posts of Government Documents". The Washington Post (The Washington Post Company): p. A13.
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