Friday, December 3, 2010

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange answers questions from Guardian readers, talks about Amazon Web Services

In a far too short Q&A, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange answered questions today from Guardian readers -- you can read the entire session here.

The one question, and its answer, that I found both revealing was this one from someone writing as "rszopa":

Q: Annoying as it may be, the DDoS seems to be good publicity (if anything, it adds to your credibility). So is getting kicked out of AWS. Do you agree with this statement?

Julian Assange:
Since 2007 we have been deliberately placing some of our servers in jurisdictions that we suspected suffered a free speech deficit inorder to separate rhetoric from reality. Amazon was one of these cases.
AWS refers to Amazon Web Services, of course. Whether Assange is being honest about whether WikiLeaks intentionally set-up Amazon to expose its position is hard to say. But the ramifications of the incident may well be greater than Amazon may think. Amazon has many ecommerce sites beside its US one (I've used the French, UK and Canadian sites myself in the past) and this incident may reinforce the fact that Amazon is a US-based company, and therefore, can not be trusted.