A former assistant to Julian Assange – WikiLeaks founder, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, has revealed plans to launch an alternative to WikiLeaks called OpenLeaks (www.openleaks.org). The rival site which is expected to go live on Monday is quoted by DN.SE as saying their “long term goal is to build a strong, transparent platform to support whistle-blowers — both in terms of technology and politics — while at the same time encouraging others to start similar projects.”
The main difference between both sites, it seems, will be from a management and publishing perspective. Rather than publishing leaked documents directly, OpenLeaks will act as an intermediary between whistle-blowers and other organisations so that all editorial control and responsibility will lie with the publishing organisation. This means that OpenLeaks will seek to provide the means for publishing leaked information, without itself being a publisher.
It’s decision to become a conduit rather than a publisher was said to have been made because of the team’s past experience at WikiLeaks. Whether this approach will be less controversial thus attracting fewer criticism remains to be seen. The site will begin trials in early 2011 and initially partner five newspapers worldwide before expanding to bigger media later.
Could this be the beginning of a surge in the number of whistle-blowing sites on the Internet?