John Young, founder of the website cryptome.org, joins CN Live! to explain why he asked the U.S. Justice Dept. to make him a co-defendant with Julian Assange. Tonight, 8 pm EST.
John Young, the founder of Cryptome.org has asked the U.S. Department of Justice to make him a co-defendant alongside Julian Assange if he is extradited to the U.S., because Young, an American citizen, published the same classified material as Wikileaks.
“Cryptome published the decrypted unredacted State Department Cables on September 1, 2011 prior to publication of the cables by WikiLeaks,” Young wrote in a Justice Department submission form this week.
“No US official has contacted me about publishing the unredacted cables since cryptome published them,” he wrote. “I respectfully request that the Department of Justice add me as a co-defendant in the prosecution of Mr. Assange under the Espionage Act.”
Watch John Young at 8 pm EST Friday with your co-hosts Elizabeth Vos and Joe Lauria. Produced by Cathy Vogan.
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It is interesting to see some validation of my speculation from a few days ago on the relative treatment and attention devoted to WikiLeaks versus Cryptome by the MICIMATT in the United States and elsewhere by John Young in this interview:
“I have come to suspect that the pragmatic reason that US and foreign authorities have not indicted Cryptome nor persecuted it to the same extent as WikiLeaks is that the latter organization partnered with major press outlets, pioneering new forms of collaboration between mass media and an independent transparency platform at an unprecedented scale.
In particular, outside journalists could draw widespread attention to the materials that remained under WikiLeaks’s stewardship in a coordinated fashion that simultaneously did not give them complete editorial control over which published materials members of the public could casually access with a relatively low barrier of entry, since people could directly view the primary source material on WikiLeaks rather than solely being relegated to viewing secondary coverage of it (meaning that NYT, WaPo, The Guardian, Der Spiegel, etc. could not as easily just kill a story, sit on it, or omit/alter the framing of selective elements, whether due to active pressure by government/corporate/lobby interests or otherwise).
[W]hile Cryptome has often been much less cautious than WikiLeaks about the materials that it has published and met with some degree of controversy over it at times (going against the narrative that WikiLeaks carelessly flung around materials with little to no concern for the well-being of the most vulnerable among those being exposed), it has been left alone by the authorities simply because it has not had the same relationship with other media outlets that WikiLeaks once did and lingers in relative obscurity as a result.”
Nice to get another perspective on leaking, publishing, and funding models. One tends to forget that this was a serious debate among leakers before the conversation shifted to the persecution of Assange.