Internet has become 'surveillance machine': Assange

Nov 28, 2011
Julian Assange, founder and editor-in-chief of Wikileaks, laughs as he speaks to an audience via Skype at the News World Summit in Hong Kong. Assange blasted the mainstream media, Washington, banks and the Internet itself as he addressed journalists in Hong Kong on Monday via videolink from house arrest in England.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange blasted the mainstream media, Washington, banks and the Internet itself as he addressed journalists in Hong Kong on Monday via videolink from house arrest in England.

Fresh from accepting a top award for journalism from the prestigious Walkley Foundation in his native Australia on Sunday, Assange spoke to the News World Summit in Hong Kong before keeping a regular appointment with the police.

He defended his right to call himself a journalist and said WikiLeaks' next "battle" would be to ensure that the Internet does not turn into a vast surveillance tool for governments and corporations.

"Of course I'm a goddamn journalist," he responded with affected frustration when a moderator of the conference asked if he was a member of the profession.

He said his written record spoke for itself and argued that the only reason people kept asking him if he was a journalist was because the United States' government wanted to silence him.

"The United States government does not want legal protection for us," he said, referring to a investigation into his whistle-blower website for releasing secret diplomatic and .

The former hacker criticised and the for becoming too cosy with the powerful and secretive organisations they were supposed to be holding to account.

In a 40-minute address, he also accused credit card companies such as Visa and Mastercard of illegally cutting WikiLeaks off from funding under a secret deal with the White House.

"Issues that should be decided in open court are being decided in back rooms in Washington," he said.

The Internet itself had become "the most significant surveillance machine that we have ever seen," Assange said in reference to the amount of information people give about themselves online.

"It's not an age of transparency at all ... the amount of secret information is more than ever before," he said, adding that information flows in but is not flowing out of governments and other powerful organisations.

"I see that really is our big battle. The technology gives and the technology takes away," he added.

The anti-secrecy activist then help up a handwritten sign from an aide telling him to "stop" talking or he would be late for a mandatory appointment with police.

Assange, 40, is under house arrest in England pending the outcome of a Swedish extradition request over claims of rape and sexual assault made by two women. He says he is the victim of a smear campaign.

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kochevnik
1 / 5 (1) Nov 28, 2011
Actually Assange is said to have broken a condom. That's not rape. Agreeing to the act of intercourse constitutes consent according to English law. The failure to wear a condom when the complainant had insisted on this is not sufficient to amount to rape in English law, and there is no lesser offense. In this case it is reasonable to believe that Mr. Assange was unaware that the condom had broken. He may have reasonably believed that he was complying with her condition.
ziphead
3 / 5 (4) Nov 28, 2011
Actually Assange is said to have broken a condom. That's not rape. Agreeing to the act of intercourse constitutes consent according to English law. The failure to wear a condom when the complainant had insisted on this is not sufficient to amount to rape in English law, and there is no lesser offense. In this case it is reasonable to believe that Mr. Assange was unaware that the condom had broken. He may have reasonably believed that he was complying with her condition.


Sounds a lot like you were in the bedroom at the time. Holding a candle, I presume? Providing navigation support, yes?
Wolf358
3.3 / 5 (4) Nov 28, 2011
If it doesn't look like a duck, walk like a duck, or quack like a duck, it probably isn't a duck. Best Fortune to Mr. Assange.
unknownorgin
1 / 5 (2) Nov 29, 2011
The internet is constantly monitored, just start making certain statements and see how quickly you have suits knocking on or busting your door down.
Guy_Underbridge
1 / 5 (1) Nov 29, 2011
...and what's new about this? Governments have been tracking and listening since the days of telegraph.
Guy_Underbridge
1 / 5 (1) Nov 29, 2011
Only trust IP over Carrier Pidgeon.
Camilli
not rated yet Nov 30, 2011
They are gonna convict Assange of rape, throw him in jail, and have a bunch of big guys break him in, so that he never dares to blow a whistle, or anything else, again in his life. You watch. We'll see him in 10 to 15 years and he will be nothing but an empty shell.
kochevnik
1 / 5 (1) Dec 01, 2011
Not really. The Rothschilds paid his bail in England. He is part of their plan, somehow.

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