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Anonymous picks fight with Wikileaks over donation campaign

After whistleblower site Wikileaks started a donation campaign on their Global Intelligence Files section, the hactivist group Anonymous made a public announcement, demanding the donation page be removed. 

Over the past few years, whistle blowing page Wikileaks has had a lot of financial trouble. Following a scandal in which US military documents were leaked to the site in 2010, several credit card companies, including MasterCard and Visa, cut their ties to Wikileaks. PayPal did the same, taking with them all of the funds on Wikileaks' account. Recently, they launched a donation campaign which prompts the user when trying to access Wikileaks' Global Intelligence Files, which contain more than 5 million emails from security company Stratfor.

Anonymous' Logo

The donation campaign took the form of an overlay which asked for donations, tweets and shares before letting the users access the files. When Anonymous got wind of this, they immediately made a public announcement via twitter demanding that the overlay be removed, labeling it a "paywall": "We call on @WikiLeaks to change their current set up to force donations. #InformationWantsToBeFree,"

Wikileaks responded by saying that the overlay didn't force anyone to pay, and that the page overlay could be closed at any time. Nevertheless, the donation campaign has now been taken offline, and the site is accessible as normal again. What is perhaps a little strange regarding the event is that Anonymous has always been a supporter of Wikileaks and well aware of it's money troubles. After the financial cut-off the site experienced in 2010, Anonymous responded by launching a series of DDoS attacks on the financial services who had banned Wikileaks.

David F.
A grad student in experimental physics, David is fascinated by science, space and technology. When not buried in lecture books, he enjoys movies, gaming and mountainbiking

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