What to leak and what not to leak

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on December 22, 2010

When Wikileaks revealed thousands of documents relating to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars – and revealed the identities of locals there who had helped us, opening them up to possible retribution from terrorists – the Obama administration was rather mum and the media ran story after story, unconcerned about real about the foreseeable effects of such leaks.

When Wikileaks revealed thousands of diplomatic cables, the Obama administration suddenly found its outrage button and the media again ran story after story. Most of the real-world effects in this batch of documents are diplomatic rather than life-and-death, but the media still did little soul searching.

Then, earlier this week, details of the sex charges against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange were leaked and Assange and his lawyers decided that maybe leaks  are wrong when they detail Assange’s performance in the sack. (One witness is said to have stated: "Not only had it been the world's worst screw, it had also been violent.")

Now, courtesy of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists we have another exception to the leak rule.

Board members then received a strongly worded message from an NAHJ officer that " 'leaking' info about NAHJ isn't being noble. It's pathetic. This ain't wikileaking inform about the war in Iraq. . . . We're not trying to hide anything. . . . where I come from, snitches get stitches."

See, leaking’s only acceptable when it hurts U.S. national security. Otherwise, leaking is bad.


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3 comments on “What to leak and what not to leak”

  1. "where I come from, snitches get stitches."

    Congratulations on living down to a stereotype. How embarrassing.

  2. You know, I've always hated it when people proclaim their 'right' to reveal other people's dirty laundry. They nearly always offer the excuse: "But what are you trying to hide?"

    Answer: decent people have secrets and need secrets, as should be obvious to anyone who's in the habit of closing the bathroom door. And asking "what are you hiding?" is a juvenile debating tactic, which does not address the issue at hand at all.

    But if someone proclaims that they have nothing to hide, and still objects to leaking... how is that supposed to make sense?

    And I have to love the self-centeredness of it all! "Wikileaking" about the war in Iraq, which can cause people to get killed, is presumably okay... but airing the dirty laundry of a journalist organization is beyond the pale. Delightful.


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December 2010



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