If diablog isn’t the only website you are visiting, then you have noticed that some main stream media and quite a few online publications are claiming, that WikiLeaks lost control over the original, not redacted US state department cables and that a file, “cables.csv”, is out there not encrypted. Some claim it is the notorious “insurance file” and that someone dropped the password.
Fun fact, no one has seen that file, cables.csv, yet. Although many people have been searching like mad. Cables.csv is like Nessi or the Yeti. Plenty of people write about it, but no one has seen it.
Overall, publications, online or on dead wood, about WikiLeaks are pretty negative, often focused upon personality more then facts and sometimes quite inaccurate.
For example, a common falsehood is, that WikiLeaks did not publish anything since 2010. It seems, the journalists are unable to read the website www.wikileaks.org or to follow the news in South America, Asia and all the countries, where WikiLeaks formed media partnerships and the local cables were published over the last 6-9 months. Or the latest releases.
But that isn’t the real reason.
Media are like elevators. They get you up quickly. But they sure as hell will take you to the cellar too.
WikiLeaks isn’t the first whistle-blower website around. For many years people published “leaks”. Cryptome.org is an example. But they never got much attention, certainly none from old media.
Why? Because old media sees those websites as rivals, as competitors. Every journalist dreams of his “Pentagon Papers“. Or they want to be the one to reveal the next Watergate. Naturally, any whistle-blower website reduces their chances of fame.
With its media strategy, WikiLeaks reduced its media partners to mere bullhorns. They got to do the work and publish and made same money. But the fame went to WikiLeaks mostly.
It is obvious by now, that some journalists from there, the Guardian for example, were eager to write WikiLeaks down at the first opportunity. Or at least to damage WikiLeaks reputation.
And all the media not chosen as WikiLeaks partners were – let’s be blunt – pissed. Not only didn’t they get the fame, they also lost the sales that went to their rivals. It is understandable, that those media were eagerly looking for bad news about Wikileaks.
Of course, if old media had done its job properly, there wouldn’t be any rival, any whistle-blower websites at all. But old media will never admit that fact.
Both, WikiLeaks and media, are fighting for our attention, our money and last but not least for fame.
Keep that in mind, when reading “bad news” about WikiLeaks, please.