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[News] Governments Start to 'Get' Openness

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Open Up Government Data

,----[ Quote ]
| If you're a fan of free data flow into and out of the government, Vivek 
| Kundra seems like an ally. But we can't rest on our laurels. Now is exactly 
| the time when lobbying for particular data and documents to be made 
| accessible could be most effective.   
| Data.gov is coming: Let's help build it. 


Labour's Open Hypocrisy

,----[ Quote ]
| Open information, open innovation, open discussion, open feedback: well, 
| that's just super-duper and fab and all that, but why not allow a little 
| openness about what the UK government is doing? How about getting rid of the 
| absurd Official Secrets Act, the very antithesis of openness? How about 
| putting the teeth back in the Freedom of Information Act? How about not 
| refusing to publish documents about the Iraqi war? How about letting us see 
| details of MPs' expenses? How about letting us know where our MPs live? How 
| about letting the public openly rate the government itself - the one group 
| that seems excluded from the wonderful plans to "ebay-ise" UK public life?        



Wikileaks Publishes $1B Worth of Congressional Reports

,----[ Quote ]
| Wikileaks.org, the online clearinghouse for leaked documents, has published a
| complete database of Congressional Research Service reports, which are
| private research documents written for members of Congress and their
| staffers.
| The 6,780 reports date back to 1990 and comprise all of the digitized reports
| accessible by congressional offices, said Wikileaks, which estimated their
| value at US$1 billion. They do not contain classified material, but they do
| cover politically sensitive topics such as social policy, defense and foreign
| affairs.


Extreme Openness: the Rise of Wikileaks

,----[ Quote ]
| There is a long journalistic tradition of looking back at
| the end of the year over the major events of the preceding
| 12 months - one that I have no intention of following. But
| I would like to point out an important development in the
| world of openness that has occurred over that time-span:
| the rise and rise of Wikileaks.
| The site was actually founded two years ago, but most
| people (including myself) didn't really become aware of it
| until this year. Now Wikileaks is frequently to be found in
| the eye of the storm. Indeed, it seems consciously to be
| raising its sights ever higher: recently, it has published
| documents that are acutely embarrassing to the German and
| British governments.
| This is all good stuff, but I do worry that at some point
| the goading will get too much, and the needling too
| successful, until repressive governments like the one
| currently running the UK will fight back hard - citing the
| tired old tropes about "terrorism" or "child pornography"
| or maybe just "leaves on the track" - by ordering ISPs to
| block Wikileaks and any mirrors that pop up.


Breaking: Wikileaks Missing



Wikileaks Shutdown: Censorship Is Censorship

,----[ Quote ]
| If Wikileaks were a print publication, the injunction that has shut down the
| site would be unthinkable. Back in 1931, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a
| Minnesota law that allowed the closing of any "malicious, scandalous and
| defamatory" periodical. This court, by contrast, has not only barred future
| publication of the documents at issue but elected to put Wikileaks out of
| business.    


Free Speech Advocates Mount Legal Battle to Unchain Wikileaks

,----[ Quote ]
| In Bank Julius Baer & Co., Ltd v. Wikileaks, et al, the plaintiff claims that
| the posting of certain documents to the Wikileaks site violated Swiss and
| Cayman Island bank secrecy laws.  
| Judge Jeffrey White ordered domain registrar Dynadot to disable Wikileaks.org
| in response to Julius Baer & Co.'s complaint. The groups behind the request
| to lift the injunction claim that it violates the First Amendment.  


WikiLeaks Under Fire

,----[ Quote ]
| The transparency group WikiLeaks.org currently seems to be under heavy fire.
| The main WikiLeaks.org DNS entry is unavailable, reportedly due to a
| restraining order relating to a series of articles and documents released by
| WikiLeaks about off-shore trust structures in the Cayman Islands. The
| WikiLeaks whistle blower, allegedly former vice president of the Cayman
| Islands branch of swiss bank Julius Baer, states in the WikiLeaks documents
| that the bank supported tax evasion and money laundering by its clients from
| around the world      

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