Wikileaks Denied A Speaking Opportunity At UN Conference About Wikileaks?
from the perhaps-someone-will-leak-a-pass? dept
UNESCO, the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization, is hosting a conference about The Media World after Wikileaks and News of the World. Sounds like it could be an interesting event, but one organization not happy about it… is Wikileaks. Seeing as it was a conference that touched on Wikileaks’ interests directly, Wikileaks asked to take part, and was instead denied a chance to speak at the event. When asked about this, UNESCO actually claimed that choosing to not allow Wikileaks attendees was an exercise in “freedom of expression,” which seems like a poor choice of words.
Of course, Wikileaks doesn’t come out of this looking very good either. In unfortunately typical overstatement from Wikileaks, it tries to paint this as some big censorship issue, but that seems like an exaggeration. UNESCO noted that Julian Assange’s legal advisor is taking part, as are numerous news organizations that partnered with Wikileaks. Wikileaks complains that even if Assange’s legal counsel will be on one panel, there’s no Wikileaks representation on other panels. Now, if I were organizing the event, I might use that as an opportunity to invite direct representatives of the site… if only for the fact that it would draw more interest to many of the discussions. However, beyond the irony of telling Wikileaks it can’t speak at an event about Wikileaks, it really seems like the site is trying to make a bigger deal out of this than is justified.