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Freedom Of Expression Is Priceless... For Everything Else, There's Mastercard

from the plug-pulled dept

The title of this post is from Rinze, who perfectly sums up the ridiculousness of MasterCard blocking any payment systems that are working with Wikileaks from allowing people to use its card. MasterCard's excuse is even more ridiculous than Paypal, Amazon and others. Rather than drudging up some sort of "terms of service violation," MasterCard is now just making stuff up:
MasterCard said it was cutting off payments because WikiLeaks is engaging in illegal activity. "MasterCard rules prohibit customers from directly or indirectly engaging in or facilitating any action that is illegal," spokesman Chris Monteiro said.
That's nice, but last we checked, for something to be found guilty of illegal activity, first they have to be charged and tried, and only after a court decides it's illegal, is it actually considered illegal. To date, Wikileaks hasn't been even charged with anything, let alone found guilty. Apparently MasterCard isn't a big believer in due process either. It's actually very unlikely that Wikileaks actually has done anything illegal. It is against the law to leak such documents but publishing those documents is still protected activity. Except to MasterCard.

Filed Under: free speech, mastercard, wikileaks
Companies: mastercard, wikileaks


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  1. identicon
    David, 8 Dec 2010 @ 8:14am

    Re: no company needs an excuse

    I quite agree that a company can pick and choose who to do business with. It's their prerogative and they don't have to give a reason. HOWEVER, it appears that Mastercard has publicly stated that Wikileaks is doing something illegal without benefit of charge, trial, verdict and punishment by the courts of the land. This, to me, should be the only criterion as to whether an act is illegal or not. It is not up to a company or an individual to make a unilateral decision or accusations of that nature and, as has been said elsewhere, surely this is good basis for a libel action?

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