There’s trouble brewing in the leakosphere (if we can call it that), with Julian Assange and Wikileaks on one side and German technology activist Daniel Domscheit-Berg on the other. At issue is a new leaks site, OpenLeaks, and the fate of a possible cache of leaked documents that Domscheit-Berg allegedly has and that Wikileaks would very much like to get back.
The story dates back to 2010, when Domscheit-Berg left Wikileaks. He had become involved with the organisation through his work with the Chaos Computer Club. Domscheit-Berg has since gone on to launch OpenLeaks, which he says will be more transparent than Wikileaks, and which will route leaks to news organisations rather than leaking them themselves.
Wikileaks allegedly claims that Domscheit-Borg took a cache of leaked material with him when he left Wikileaks. Unconfirmed rumours on Twitter allege that Domscheit-Borg destroyed the only copies of the leaked documents. But if that’s true, why would he do it? There are so many rumours about the documents – including about whether they ever existed – that it’s hard to know for sure who has done what.
It’s clear that there’s an insane level of internal politicking going on here. Wikileaks has been tweeting some pretty major claims about Daniel Domscheit-Berg, while Guatemalan human rights lawyer Renata Avila has issued an open letter asking what happened to some documents that she sent to Wikileaks. Domscheit-Berg, meanwhile, is staying quiet on the subject, but it remains to be seen how long he can avoid stepping into the public debate.