Understanding Wikileaks history

by [anonymous]2 min read1st Jan 20117 comments


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I know that Wikileaks is a political topic but I still think that it is important to discuss it in this forum. Rational decisions can only made when information is available. The question behind Wikileaks is central to the quest to make rational decisions.
If you inform yourself through the mainstream media you basically don't understand the thoughts behind Wikileaks. The got surprised when Wkikileaks inserted itself into the it's stories instead of staying in the background. The Climate Gate emails were for example released by Wikileaks without the public becoming aware of Wikileaks existence.
I would like to list a few resources that actually help you to form your own opinion:
The first is a talk given at the eve in 2005. On the Chaos Computer Congress the war against the Surveilence State get's declared lost. The idea gets put forward that hackers need to produce technology to allow political dissidents to stay anonymous. 
A year later Julian Assange founds together with people around Chaos Computer Club Wikileaks. There's no public record of all the members and it therefore not clear whether everyone in question took part on a Chaos Computer Congress. The Chaos Computer Congress has per design no list of participants and had over a long time a policy to forbid photographs to protect anonymity.
Rop Gongrijp who gave the "We lost the war"-talk I mentioned above later traveled to Maleysia with Julian Assange and was in the group that prepared the Collateral Murder video.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg who served as second spokesman of Wikileaks lives in Berlin and attended the Chaos Computer Congress a bunch of times.
Jacob Appelbaum who gave a Wikileaks talk in the US after it became clear that Julian is in danger if he would go to the US gave speeches at the Chaos Computer Congress in 2005.
The Wau Holand foundation that's linked to the Chaos Computer Club (Wau Holand was a cofounder of the Chaos Computer Club) manages the money that gets donated to Wikileaks.
There are rumors that Wikileaks eavesdropped via Tor exit notes on a Chinese intelligence operation and used documents that the Chinese gathered as their starting data.
Julian Assange then publishes two treatises titled  "State and Terrorist Conspiracies" and "Conspiracy as Governance"  in which he scretches out model of how groups that act against the public interests work and how they can be weakened. It uses modern Graph theory and is worth reading even if would come from another source that isn't involved in Wikileaks.
If you can understand German then there a very interesting talk about how you find truth by Frank Rieger who was the other person given the "We lost the war" talk. It illustrates very well a general skeptic position about finding the truth in which that community believes http://media.ccc.de/browse/congress/2007/24c3-2334-de-die_wahrheit_und_was_wirklich_passierte.html .
In the eve of 2009 they also hold a progress report and report about the plans to make Island a offshore free press haven. They also want to switch to a updated software platform and make an application the knight foundation in which they detail how the new software should look like. 600 people volunteer to contribute to Wikileaks as programmers after the talk according to Daniel Domscheit-Berg description at the next Chaos Computer Congress. 
In 2010 Wikileaks focuses on publishing documents that were allegedly given by Bradley Manning. Wikileaks suddenly comes in the public eye.
Charges get made against Julian Assange based on rape. People such as Daniel Domscheit-Berg say that the rape charges are Julian Assanges personal business and have nothing to do with Wikileaks. The Chaos Computer Club official position is that it doesn't comment of the personal problems of members of Wikileaks.
The Wikileaks group forks over internal controvery. On 30.12.2010 Daniel Domscheit-Berg presents a talk on OpenLeaks as an alternative to Wikileaks where OpenLeaks will give documents directly to public players like newspapers or NGOs instead of publishing it themselves. The talk isn't yet online but will be in the future.
In it he clarifies that he isn't even the lead developer of OpenLeaks and that they are a bunch of people who split from Wikileaks.


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7 comments, sorted by Highlighting new comments since Today at 4:45 AM
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Downvoted for typos and bad formatting. Things like "Wkikileaks" and ugly use of links ...

(I only read the first three paragraphs, can't judge the essay as a whole yet)

Moved to Discussion section.

No offense, but I think this topic and its presentation here is too political for this particular forum. I am not judging your argument on its merits, just saying there are other places to make it.

This post is pretty low quality, so I understand the downvotes.

However, this subject isn't "too political" - wikileaks has very significant implications for coordination of decision making for large groups - something that's definitely on topic for a rationality site. And there was never any "less political" equivalent of wikileaks.

Sorry to see this so heavily downvoted. Thanks -- this made for interesting reading and watching.

If you haven't checked out the archive of iq.org it's also a rather interesting blog :)

re: formatting... you don't happen to use Ubuntu/Chrome, do you?

Assange writes some pretty insightful things. I was pretty struck by (in a Long Now way) this quote:

"The internet is self destructing paper. A place where anything written is soon destroyed by rapacious competition and the only preservation is to forever copy writing from sheet to sheet faster than they can burn.

If it's worth writing, it's worth keeping. If it can be kept, it might be worth writing. Would your store your brain in a startup company's vat? If you store your writing on a 3rd party site like blogger, livejournal or even on your own site, but in the complex format used by blog/wiki software de jour you will lose it forever as soon as hypersonic wings of internet labor flows direct people's energies elsewhere. For most information published on the internet, perhaps that is not a moment too soon, but how can the muse of originality soar when immolating transience brushes every feather?"

--Julian Assange, "Tue 05 Dec 2006 : Self destructing paper"

(Informed some of my own thoughts, anyway.)

That's some really cool writing the guy's got..