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WikiLeaks: The Illusion of Transparency


Alasdair S. Roberts


Suffolk University Law School

June 2, 2011

International Review of Administrative Sciences, 2012
Suffolk University Law School Research Paper No. 11-19

Abstract:     
It has been said that the 2010 WikiLeaks disclosures marked "the end of secrecy in the old fashioned, cold-war-era sense." This is not true. Advocates of WikiLeaks have overstated the scale and significance of the leaks. They also overlook many ways in which the simple logic of radical transparency - leak, publish, and wait for the inevitable outrage - can be defeated in practice. WikiLeaks only created the illusion of a new era in transparency. In fact the 2010 leaks revealed the obstacles to achievement of increased transparency, even in the digital age.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 29

Keywords: government secrecy, transparency, right to information, national security, diplomacy

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Date posted: April 3, 2011 ; Last revised: March 11, 2014

Suggested Citation

Roberts, Alasdair S., WikiLeaks: The Illusion of Transparency (June 2, 2011). International Review of Administrative Sciences, 2012; Suffolk University Law School Research Paper No. 11-19. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1801343 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1801343

Contact Information

Alasdair S. Roberts (Contact Author)
Suffolk University Law School ( email )
120 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02108-4977
United States
HOME PAGE: http://www.aroberts.us

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