Why Wikileaks is important
Publishing improves transparency, and this transparency creates a better society for all people. Better scrutiny leads to reduced corruption and stronger democracies in all society’s institutions, including government, corporations and other organisations. A healthy, vibrant and inquisitive journalistic media plays a vital role in achieving these goals. We are part of that media.
Scrutiny requires information. Historically, information has been costly in terms of human life, human rights and economics. As a result of technical advances particularly the internet and cryptography – the risks of conveying important information can be lowered. In its landmark ruling on the Pentagon Papers, the US Supreme Court ruled that « only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government. » We agree.
We believe that it is not only the people of one country that keep their own government honest, but also the people of other countries who are watching that government through the media.
In the years leading up to the founding of WikiLeaks, we observed the world’s publishing media becoming less independent and far less willing to ask the hard questions of government, corporations and other institutions. We believed this needed to change.
WikiLeaks has provided a new model of journalism. Because we are not motivated by making a profit, we work cooperatively with other publishing and media organisations around the globe, instead of following the traditional model of competing with other media. We don’t hoard our information; we make the original documents available with our news stories. Readers can verify the truth of what we have reported themselves. Like a wire service, WikiLeaks reports stories that are often picked up by other media outlets. We encourage this. We believe the world’s media should work together as much as possible to bring stories to a broad international readership.
More about WikiLeaks
- How WikiLeaks works
- Why Wikileaks is important
- How WikiLeaks verifies its news
- Who’s behind WikiLeaks
- Anonymity for sources
- Prizes and background
- Some of the stories we have broken
- How more inquiring can make difference
- The importance of principaled leaking journalism
- Should the press really be free?
- Legal consequences as a result of evidence posted on WikiLeaks