What is WikiLeaks?
WikiLeaks is a media organization launched in 2006, operating internationally with the aim of publishing and making public government classified information. WikiLeaks is run by The Sunshine Press. The organization is headed by Julian Assange, an Australian Internet activist.
WikiLeaks is supposedly founded by Chinese dissidents, journalists, technologists and mathematicians. Some have disputed this claim. WikiLeaks gets its name from the popular online encyclopedia WikiPedia (borrowing Wiki from the popular site), but has no ties to it.
Some of the controversial leaks that WikiLeaks have uncovered include the video of US forces accidentally killing Afghan civilians in 2007. Another is the Afghan War Diaries, where thousands of classified documents on the Afghanistan war were made for public viewing.
WikiLeaks has received a number of recognitions in its earlier years including the 2008 Economist Magazine Award, and Amnesty International’s UK Media Award for New Media. However as of late, WIkiLeaks has been experiencing a barrage of criticism because of its indiscriminate publishing of thousands upon thousands of reports, as well as for not redacting names of civilian sources, especially in the Afghan war, which can lead to lives being endangered. Assange’s response to this has been that ‘WikiLeaks is not made up of journalists’, which has been deemed unacceptable by Reporters Without Borders.