Monday, December 20, 2010

WikiLeaks Piece In The Mark

My first post on Wilikleaks has appeared in The Mark, where it will be read and commented upon at the highest levels. I predict that CSIS steps in and screws around so my debit card won't work.

And, incidentally, anyone that tells you there's no news in those cables hasn't been paying attention.

13 comments:

R. G. Harvie said...

Interesting post, and I believe your use of the CRU emails as an analogous use of information is bang on - though I'm not sure if I would agree that the impact has been trivial..

The more interesting question - which you don't really address, is the conflict between "access to information" and "privacy" from an ethical point of view.

We have developed quite an appetite for knowing more about our neighbors than they might like us to know.. and one wonders whether the public response will be quite as benign when we start "Napstering" each others medical records.

Witness, for example, the sticky situation relative to the medical records of Sean Bruyea.

Supposing Wikileaks obtains documents showing that a government member has a mental health issue - fair game?

What about an opposition member?

What about a government board appointee?

What about, oh, a political rabble-rouser - like Ezra Levant or, say, Big City Liberal?

If we are going to be suspicious of a government body poking into our personal information - can we be less suspicious over an unregulated citizen like Assange?

Or.

As you imply, do we just accept is as a fait accompli, and get ready for the new decade where there are no secrets for anyone?

Geez.

Next thing you now you have people duplicating your blog and masquering as YOU :)

Simon said...

Good article. I agree with you. It's called the Digital Age. But of course the Dark Forces want to control the internet so we're ALL going to pay for it...

P.S. When CSIS is torturing you please don't mention my name. ;)

bigcitylib said...

R.G.,

This where the "negotiating with Napster" analogy comes in. There has been much talk already of wikileaks alternatives. The "transparency market has been monetized", as someone has said, and the differences between companies/brands will include the particular ethic they use in deciding what gets spilled.

Better that the govs learn to live with wikileaks or a competiter in exchange for a set of ground rules.

Otherwise, I think its a fait accompli, as long as we persist in living our lives on-line. The Internet makes it relatively easy to spy on old girlfriends, enemies etc., and I think there has developed a real appeitite for this kind of thing over the past several years.

Paul S said...

I like how the article starts out with an attempt at justifying theft of the money due artists for their property. Relevance?

Sorry, the internet does not change everything. Theft by download is the same as the five fingered type.

As for Assange, if he is considered a martyr then he is an indication of the irrelevance of 21st century progressives. Besides, his leaks have to rank up there as the most inconsequential ever.

Saskboy said...

The problem with there being many WikiLeaks, is that the public won't know which ones are trustworthy, and which ones are gov't booby traps. If it stays at WikiLeaks and OpenLeaks, we're okay, but we know it won't. When there are many services, the average leaker will face another intimidation factor, because we put politicians in charge who won't defend democratic systems.

Saskboy said...

"his leaks have to rank up there as the most inconsequential ever."

Yeah, a secret US war in Yemen, and ground war in Pakistan are completely without consequence. Not to mention the revelation that the US Military lied about murdering journalists and thousands of civilians in Iraq. Iraqi people are inconsequential too in your eyes, apparently.

Paul S said...

The public has alreay lost interest in the leaks because they contained nothing of consequence.

A controversial war in Iraq? Duh. That news is about 6 years old Saskboy.

Saskboy said...

Paul, less than 1/100 of the cables have been vetted and released thus far, the public doesn't know 1% of what it's missing, and it hasn't given up interest in WikiLeaks. Each day a newspaper has new revelations from the one leak alone, and that's just in North America.

If you want to focus on the inconsequential, you're going to miss what's important.

Also, your understanding of "theft" needs correction. When a copy is made, it doesn't deprive the owner of the original from using their copy. The Internet makes it easier to share information, and music, movies, and apparently government secret text files are all information in the non-subjective eyes of Internet protocols.

Paul S said...

Also, your understanding of "theft" needs correction. When a copy is made, it doesn't deprive the owner of the original from using their copy - Saskboy

No, my understanding of theft is correct. Unless your copy is explicitly authorized by the copyright owner, the action is one of theft.

Personally, paying 99 cents for a song without any DRM has always seemed like a bargain to me. I guess progressives are the ultimate cheapskates I long suspected them to be. :P

Saskboy said...

It's not a matter of being cheap, it's a matter of principles. Copyright law is draconian, getting worse, and is not based in the real world.

Claiming the 99 cent iTunes songs as DRM free means you also have a poor grasp on history. The first DRM-free songs for purchase on iTunes were always more than $1.15, and probably still are. You're arguing for a company that don't give a poop about you or your freedoms, and today removed access to the WikiLeaks App.

Do you pay for TV shows on DVD, and refused to watch them if they were recorded on a VCR? If you've ever watched a recorded television show or movie, you're simply being a hypocrite, you copier you.

Paul S said...

It's not a matter of being cheap, it's a matter of principles.

Yeah, it's a matter of being cheap. Face it, you're a tightwad.

Claiming the 99 cent iTunes songs as DRM free means you also have a poor grasp on history. The first DRM-free songs for purchase on iTunes were always more than $1.15

99 cents of $1.29. Who cares? It's a great deal either way.

If you've ever watched a recorded television show or movie, you're simply being a hypocrite, you copier you.

The biggest hypocrites are usually the most prolifigate thieves in my experience. I'm correct, no?

Gene Rayburn said...

Cheap? Well I guess if your brain is so simple it can only interpret the world in extreme black and white.

What happens if the material you downloaded isnt copyrighted in Canada? That's still a bit of a grey area for downloading and probably where the majority of my stuff comes from. In fact the majority of my downloads are of British TV from a group that has is well known in the UK. The thing is they dont release anything that is available on DVD and arent really considered evildoers or cheapskates like you think. Maybe its just people who like a television show they cant get where they live.

What happens when a broadcaster or musician leaks their own material early? It's not like its an uncommon practice. Many television writers cite downloading as the reason for their show's success.

The real problem is the business model the media industry is fucked. So you can prosecute your customers into bankruptcy and fuck your profits or you can change your model to adapt. There are already successful media business models in Asia that recognize downloading and take advantage of it.

Guess your side is just typical lazy do nothing, but complain alot righties eh Paul

Paul S said...

Cheap?

Yeah, cheap. Anyone over 30 who doesn't pay for most of their media is a pinhead.

Well I guess if your brain is so simple it can only interpret the world in extreme black and white. - Gene

Like this is such a complex issue Gene.

Tightwads. ;P