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eve88 Female
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Join Date: Oct 2005
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  #6 Old 15-01-2011 Default Re: Debate Battle 1: Is Wikileaks justified for the greater good?

Opposing statement

Wikileaks is founded on the principles of free speech; they provide an avenue for whistleblowers to let themselves be heard relatively safely. However, too much of a good thing can prove to be disastrous : Julius Assange himself admits that there may one day be "blood on our hands". Indiscriminate release of information endangers lives - be it military secrets, or tales of corruption. Lives, perhaps innocent ones, can be and will be damaged as repercussions from the infomation released will fall on the undeserved, sacrificed on the altar of public opinion, or by the hands of repressive governments.

What Wikileaks is advocating is free speech without considering its consequences - they do not do any analysis on the data they release, nor do they practise self-censorship. And with the way that Wikileaks is set up, they have tried to make themselves immune to repercussions from at least one party, the US government : the "Insurance File" released makes it so that persecuting Wikileaks is a risky business.

In addition, Wikileaks, without analysis, or indeed any sense of perspective on the raw data they release, creates magnet for sensationalist reporting; for the creation of irrational distrust between nations. In one sense, this is part of a wider problem : it is increasingly so that everyone has too much data, and not enough time or skill to make sense of it - and that is a dangerous thing.

In short, I believe that what Wikileaks is doing, allowing dissemination of potentially harmful information without trying to organise it, or considering the implications of it, is taking the concept of free speech too far: The right of free speech does not override the right of others to avoid unjust harm.
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