At the end of last week, WikiLeaks published the complete collection of the Sony hacked documents, fully searchable by any chosen topic or name.
Julian Assange defended the leaks, stating “it is newsworthy and at the centre of a geo-political conflict. It belongs in the public domain. WikiLeaks will ensure it stays there.”
Some stories of interest included Ben Affleck’s much reported slave trader ancestor controversy, David Cameron changing airing dates on TV shows set in 18th century Scotland around the date of the referendum, amends to the Snowden film press release to remove mentions of “illegal spying” and overall a whole lot about the “depressing reality of filmmaking”. The emails also prove that Sony has been actively lobbying governments to create criminal enforcement strategies around copyright laws.
In response, Sony are retaliating by sending letters to media outlets warning them not to report the stories, which, of course, is resulting in more reports. Sony has also released a statement that disagrees with the “assertion that this material belongs in the public domain” and accuse WikiLeaks of assisting the original attackers with their actions.
Before the WikiLeaks release, the Sony files were more difficult to navigate, as they had to be downloaded from often fleeting torrent files, and sifted through individually. This new method allows people to find stories that are relevant and important to them. This approach is interesting in comparison with the Snowden approach, which involved using The Guardian as the responsible controller of content. Although the stories surrounding Sony leaks mainly involve film stars and movie sets, awareness of Assange’s ethos to make the majority of information publicly available, may cause interesting repercussions of a more political nature in the future.
This originally appeared in Moving World Wednesday 20150422
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