Sign In

Communications of the ACM

ACM News

Don't Prosecute Wikileaks


View as: Print Mobile App Share: Send by email Share on reddit Share on StumbleUpon Share on Hacker News Share on Tweeter Share on Facebook

As faculty members and officers of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, we are concerned by recent reports that the Department of Justice is considering criminal charges against Julian Assange or others associated with Wikileaks.

Journalists have a responsibility to exercise careful news judgment when classified documents are involved, including assessing whether a document is legitimately confidential and whether there may be harm from its publication.

But while we hold varying opinions of Wikileaks' methods and decisions, we all believe that in publishing diplomatic cables Wikileaks is engaging in journalistic activity protected by the First Amendment. Any prosecution of Wikileaks' staff for receiving, possessing or publishing classified materials will set a dangerous precedent for reporters in any publication or medium, potentially chilling investigative journalism and other First Amendment-protected activity.

From Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
View Full Article


 

No entries found