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This is a question B3ta Person of the Year 2010

Instead of Time person of the year, who's B3ta's and why? (Thanks to Elliot Reuben for the suggestion.)

(, Thu 16 Dec 2010, 10:53)
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diplomats record everything. fact. fiction. rumour. heresay. without the original context, and the person who wrote it to report, it's meaningless.

And I totally agree, find a unbiased third party capable of analysing properly the evidence and use them to review it then reveal to the public "the truth" if you want to call it that . Wikileaks is in no way unbiased nor have I seen any evidence it's capable of properly analysing. Journalists certainly aren't. and the public most certainly isn't either.
(, Thu 16 Dec 2010, 17:47, closed)
The wonderful thing about the internet, is that it is now possible to do these dumps. In the olden days, when granddad rode a bicycle to the pit, newspapers made decisions about what to print and what not to print, and interpreted and filtered information, for a range of reasons but significantly because of the technological and cost limitations. It was not practical to print (or reprint) all documents they might have acquired.
The other thing is that there is simply much more documents and data available these days to leak. And much easier to copy (rather than needing to photocopy, or photograph, or steal several cabinets full). It is also available to much wider audience. According to some reports the diplomatic cables were available to about 2 million people when they were secure.
As far as I can tell, Wikileaks is making far fewer decisions about what it publishes than traditional media makes. The last dump, the Afghan/Iraqi war papers, was just that a dump of documents all at once; the original source documents all at once. The current dumps of the cables are being released in chunks, according to what I've read, to maintain the attention on the cables.
You are correct in stating that the cables are not necessarily the truth, they are the opinions of individual diplomats, and are based on a range of sources including rumour and speculation. This simple fact is something that has been lost on many, including mainstream media reporting on the cables.
However, Wikileaks is releasing the original cables, so I don't think anyone can accuse Wikileaks as presenting the content of the cables themselves as absolute truth.
The real power in Wikileaks, is the fact that we can so much more easily get the original source documents, read them and make up our own minds, instead of relying on the particular biases of our favourite daily, be it the Daily Mail or the Guardian.
By giving us direct access, it is so much harder for a few to control the flow of information. A superficial glance at history shows how easy it has been in the past for information to be controlled, because decisions about the flow of information were made by so few people.
(, Sat 18 Dec 2010, 0:31, closed)
and by extension Assange, decides what to release.
Just saying, like.
(, Sat 18 Dec 2010, 8:59, closed)
But they release it unedited, without opinion or judgement
That's got to be worth something
(, Tue 21 Dec 2010, 18:27, closed)
There's a decent comparison to be drawn
with a prosecution lawyer producing evidence to a jury, then saying "let the facts speak for themselves".
(, Wed 22 Dec 2010, 19:39, closed)
Unless you are an expert in
economics, politics, social welfare, conflict and about 30 other things besides, and are in possesion of every other single bit of "unleaked" information about scenarios, you don't possess the capabiliy to analyse most of the stuff leaked and "make up your own mind" at least not in an unbiased mannner.

You think you do, but you don't. Just saying, like.

And unbiased? Please. Bradley Manning has a huge agenda. He's got a chip on his shoulder against the US military the size of Wales. Assange has a huge personal agenda, mostly "Julian Assange". They are about as unbiased as a Russian football ref.
(, Mon 20 Dec 2010, 11:26, closed)
Everyone's biased in their own way
It's inescapable. But that doesn't make the information biased - it's people's perceptions of it that provide the bias. Sure, they may have their own agendas for releasing the information, but that doesn't make the information itself biased.

Just saying, like
(, Tue 21 Dec 2010, 18:28, closed)

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