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posted by takyon on Thursday January 25 2018, @09:00PM   Printer-friendly
from the if-it-walks-like-a-duck dept.

FBI Whistleblower on Pierre Omidyar and His Campaign to Neuter Wikileaks

FBI whistleblower Sibel Edmonds asserts Pierre Omidyar decided to create The Intercept to not only take ownership of the Snowden leaks but also to continue his blockade against WikiLeaks and create a "honey trap" for whistleblowers.

WikiLeaks, the transparency organization known for publishing leaked documents that threaten the powerful, finds itself under pressure like never before, as does its editor-in-chief, Julian Assange. Now, the fight to silence Wikileaks is not only being waged by powerful government figures but also by the media, including outlets and organizations that have styled themselves as working to protect whistleblowers.

As this three-part series seeks to show, these outlets and organizations are being stealthily guided by the hands of special interests, not the public interest they claim to serve. Part I focuses on the Freedom of the Press Foundation, The Intercept, and the oligarch who has strongly influenced both organizations in his long-standing fight to silence WikiLeaks.

[...] WikiLeaks, in recent tweets, has suggested that Omidyar's influence was responsible not only for the [Freedom of the Press Foundation's (FPF) decision to terminate processing of WikiLeaks' donations] but also for the unusual attacks that some FPF members have launched against WikiLeaks, particularly Assange, in recent months. The most outspoken of these members has been FPF director Micah Lee, who is employed by the Omidyar-owned publication, The Intercept.

In February of last year, Lee called Assange a "rapist, liar & ally to fascists" in a tweet — despite the fact that Assange was never charged with rape, his alleged accusers have also claimed that Assange had not sexually assaulted them, and there is abundant evidence suggesting that the rape investigation was a means of ensnaring Assange to ensure his extradition to the United States. Based on Lee's other tweets, the "ally to fascists" charge ostensibly refers to Lee's belief that Wikileaks' publications of emails from the DNC and Clinton campaign chair John Podesta was done explicitly, with Assange's blessing, to aid the Trump campaign.

Related: Feds Arrest NSA Contractor in Leak of Top Secret Russia Document


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  • (Score: 4, Informative) by bob_super on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:04PM (18 children)

    by bob_super (1357) on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:04PM (#627896)

    I'm pretty versed in politics and tech, yet "Pierre Omidyar" should be defined somewhere in TFS, at least until he does become a household name.

    I typically rage when the media thinks it appropriate to quote random twitter posts, without informing us of why the person behind "LockHil4Evar" may have an informed and somehow valuable opinion.

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:34PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:34PM (#627907)

    Sorry about that. His name should be somewhat familiar if you remembered the launch of The Intercept. In fact, both SoylentNews and The Intercept were founded in the same month: February 2014. Coincidence?

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by c0lo on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:35PM (11 children)

    by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:35PM (#627908) Journal

    I'm pretty versed in politics and tech, yet "Pierre Omidyar" should be defined somewhere in TFS, at least until he does become a household name.

    Yes, because "the Zuck of ebay" is so hard to remember.

    ("now, get off of my lawn" mandatory section) And then, the younglings need to have the info immediately in the context, otherwise - even when "pretty versed in politics and tech" - they may start to search and forget in the process what they were doing. The generational ADHD is so prevalent it became mandatory to cater for news providers and aggregators to cater for it or feel the millennials' wrath

    (grin... or maybe not)

    --
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:40PM

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:40PM (#627910) Journal

      it became mandatory to cater for news providers and aggregators to cater for it

      Sorry 'bout that.
      Too early on a public holiday morning may do this for me. Or maybe it's the age. Or something worth of (self)scorn...

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:56PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 25 2018, @10:56PM (#627917)

      Sorry, I don't study celebrities, you should identify people by more than name.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 25 2018, @11:01PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 25 2018, @11:01PM (#627922)

        TFS says he created The Intercept, and that he's an oligarch.

    • (Score: 4, Informative) by bob_super on Thursday January 25 2018, @11:22PM (7 children)

      by bob_super (1357) on Thursday January 25 2018, @11:22PM (#627943)

      > And then, the younglings need to have the info immediately in the context

      Actually, Proper Newspapers, from the cold dark days of before being able to google every missing piece of data, had the silly habit of introducing the credentials of the people being talked about or quoted.
      One could argue that it's a lot less necessary these days, and providing context and supporting arguments has become a threat towards post character limits.

      I can wait two paragraphs, as writers trying to avoid repetitions seem to like to do, to enhance drama/curiosity or something ... But the information, per the traditional rules of journalistic writing, should be in the piece.

      • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Friday January 26 2018, @12:31AM (4 children)

        by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Friday January 26 2018, @12:31AM (#627994) Journal

        I can wait two paragraphs, as writers trying to avoid repetitions seem to like to do, to enhance drama/curiosity or something ... But the information, per the traditional rules of journalistic writing, should be in the piece.

        Speaking of "traditional rules of journalistic writing", inverted pyramid [wikipedia.org] does not guarantee the details are presented in the summary, rather on the contrary.

        --
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
        • (Score: 3, Informative) by bob_super on Friday January 26 2018, @01:03AM (3 children)

          by bob_super (1357) on Friday January 26 2018, @01:03AM (#628007)

          From that Wikipedia page: "Most important info: Who? What? ..."

          "Rex says: Trump is a moron" changes completely depending on whether his full name is Rex Tillerson, or Rex Shovelson from the club at the end of the street.

          At least, we don't have summaries that end mid-sentence, in the despicable tradition of US papers trying to make you turn the page.

          • (Score: 3, Touché) by c0lo on Friday January 26 2018, @02:41AM (2 children)

            by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Friday January 26 2018, @02:41AM (#628045) Journal

            What of "Pierre Omidyar decided to create The Intercept" escaped your observation or understanding?

            --
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26 2018, @06:40AM (1 child)

              by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26 2018, @06:40AM (#628130)

              None but it would simply have been better to say eBay billionare Pierre Om ...

              • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Friday January 26 2018, @08:15AM

                by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Friday January 26 2018, @08:15AM (#628146) Journal

                Which is only relevant to the story as the "this is how he got his billions" detail - doesn't add much to the story.
                The other "owner of the Intercept" one is more relevant and was mentioned first.

                --
                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
      • (Score: 3, Informative) by captain normal on Friday January 26 2018, @02:56AM (1 child)

        by captain normal (2205) on Friday January 26 2018, @02:56AM (#628055)
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26 2018, @06:52AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26 2018, @06:52AM (#628132)

          MintPress might be wonky but apparently so certainly is MinnPost or at least this guy writing for them, Brian Lambert.

          From the get-­go, MintPress was your typical left-­of-­center web outlet. Climate change updates? Check. Republican candidates saying bizarre things? Check.

          If you think it is required of a web site to be "left-of-center" to be interested in the climate, you must be a rabid fascist and nihilist yourself. And to think that politicians (left, center or right) are unable of constantly uttering the stupidest things, a fool.

  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by frojack on Thursday January 25 2018, @11:08PM (2 children)

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Thursday January 25 2018, @11:08PM (#627928) Journal

    I typically rage when the media thinks it appropriate to quote random twitter posts,

    You and me both.

    Its a disease, a cancer, born of the believe that all opinions are equally valid and all facts are subject to negotiation.
    I don't care that someone might "have an opinion", and I have no reason to believe any given twitter handle belongs to any specific person. I place no special value on an Informed opinion, because regardless of the information that person supposedly has access to, its still just their opinion, often unswayed by the facts.

    I've added a rule to the My Rules tab of Ublock Origin, something like:

    ! 1/25/2018, 2:48:24 PM https://twitter.com [twitter.com]
    twitter.com

    Kill them all, let god sort it out.

    --
    No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Phoenix666 on Friday January 26 2018, @02:15AM (1 child)

      by Phoenix666 (552) on Friday January 26 2018, @02:15AM (#628036) Journal

      I don't care that someone might "have an opinion", and I have no reason to believe any given twitter handle belongs to any specific person. I place no special value on an Informed opinion, because regardless of the information that person supposedly has access to, its still just their opinion, often unswayed by the facts.

      You raise an interesting issue. We're living in a time now when "argument from authority" has suffered a multi-prong assault.

      One prong is that thanks to the Internet and the greater access to information it has brought, we have all seen more clearly than ever before how devoid of actual authority so many of our "authorities" are, ie. the Great and Powerful are so often not very great and really quite stupid, and so each of us asks himself, "If we live in a meritocracy, then why is it that moron is rich and powerful when I am not?"

      Another prong is that knowledge has become so specialized that it's becoming harder for us to feel able to question the conclusions of specialties not our own. A person might know a great deal about circuit design, but shy from questioning the latest astonishing report from the field of chemistry.

      So we're collectively finding it harder to know who to believe, and the process we're witnessing where authorities are attacking each others' authority has compounded that.

      Then there's trying to fall back on logic, to carefully assess if what the person tells us makes sense. That can lead to error, too, because a clever deceiver will construct a lie that sounds plausible enough. We can probe, to see if the construct bears scrutiny, but well the day gets away from us and we get interrupted by our boss, our spouse, our kids, our chatty neighbor and we can't follow up as thoroughly as we might in a slower age.

      This is the discursive breakdown we have read about so many times in history books. Old orthodoxies crumble away, new forces try to craft language that empowers them, that helps them wrest the discourse away from the status quo. They reach for new symbols, new stories to tell their truth.

      This is what it feels like on the ground in the middle of a revolution. Buckle up and pay close attention, because we all have front row seats to History in the Making now.

      --
      Washington DC delenda est.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26 2018, @04:42PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26 2018, @04:42PM (#628320)

        This is what it feels like on the ground in the middle of a revolution. Buckle up and pay close attention, because we all have front row seats to History in the Making now.

        Every generation says and thinks this. Sometimes things happen, sometimes they don't. And it is always easy to look back and assign importance to things, much like a horoscope. Regardless, every generation looks to some unknown boogeyman around the corner whether it exists or not. "It is the best of times. It is the worst of times."

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26 2018, @12:08AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26 2018, @12:08AM (#627982)

    Wasn't Pierre one of the TeleTubbies?