Bank Of America — Thought To Be Wikileaks Next Target — Suddenly Tries To Block Payments To Wikileaks
from the barn-door-back-there dept
This is pretty amusing. Back at the end of November, Wikileaks had indicated that its next leak involved a very large US bank that was apparently doing some bad things — and many people zeroed in on Bank of America as the target. And then, just a few weeks later, Bank of America announces (late on a Friday night, in an attempt to hide it) that it will join Paypal, Visa and Mastercard in trying to block all payments to Wikileaks.
Of course, I don’t quite see how Bank of America does that. Is Bank of America really saying that it can block you from spending your money the way you want to? About the only thing it can really do is stop direct wire transfers, but I’d imagine not too many people are doing that. As for systems like Flattr, which is currently a way of supporting Wikileaks financially, I really don’t see how any of the above firms can block people from using Flattr to support Wikileaks. All anyone knows with Flatter is that they’re supporting Flattr, so you can use Visa or MasterCard via Paypal to pay Flattr, and then Flattr Wikileaks, and those financial firms won’t know the difference.
It seems like all these financial firms are really doing is highlighting how they, too, don’t quite understand the nature of a distributed internet, and a distributed payment infrastructure — even if they think they power it.