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Freedom of the Press Foundation Created to Crowdsource Funding for WikiLeaks

BY Julia Wetherell | Monday, December 17 2012

Freedom of the Press Foundation Logo (via Boing Boing )

Supporters of WikiLeaks have founded a nonprofit that will provide crowdsourced funding to the anti-secrecy organization and other public interest journalism ventures, it was announced Sunday. The Freedom of the Press Foundation was created in response to donation processing blockades by Visa, Mastercard, and PayPal that have been in effect since the WikiLeaks scandal first broke in 2010. WikiLeaks was forced to suspend operations in 2011, without sufficient funding. Media Decoder spoke to Trevor Timm, executive director and co-founder of the new organization:

“The cutoff in funds of WikiLeaks occurred without any court proceedings,” said Trevor Timm, co-founder and executive director of the Freedom of the Press Foundation. “By crowdsourcing funding for a variety of open-government initiatives, we can prevent the kind of commercial censorship that took place.”

Backers of the foundation include a diverse array of public figures, from Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg and former Grateful Dead lyricist John Perry Barlow (also of the Electronic Frontier Foundation), both co-founders, to John Cusack and Boing Boing editor Xeni Jardin.

In addition to WikiLeaks, the Freedom of the Press Foundation will crowdsource support for the open government news site MuckRock, the National Security Archive at George Washington University, and The UpTake, a user-driven newsgathering hub. On their homepage, you can choose what percentage of your donation will go to each organization.

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