Archive for August, 2013

To make journalism harder, slower, less secure

That’s what the surveillance state is trying to do. It has the means, the will and the latitude to go after journalism the way it went after terrorism. Only a more activist press, working together, stands a chance of resisting this. Last week, the novelist and former CIA operative Barry Eisler published one of the […]

Conspiracy to commit journalism

“If sunlight coalitions are to succeed, they won’t succeed by outwitting surveillance. Not better technology, but greater legitimacy is their edge.” The mood toughened just over a month ago, when I received a phone call from the centre of government telling me: “You’ve had your fun. Now we want the stuff back.” There followed further […]

When you’re in a Fourth Estate situation

As things stand today, the Fourth Estate is a state of mind. Some in the press have it, some do not. Some who have it are part of the institutional press. Some, like Ladar Levison and Edward Snowden, are not. “I think if the American public knew what our government was doing, they wouldn’t be […]

Edward Snowden, meet Jeff Bezos

What we do know about Snowden is something we don’t know about the new owner of the Washington Post: whether he can go up against the most powerful and secretive forces on the planet… and win. In exchanges with Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman prior to his name becoming public, Edward Snowden said something that got […]

The Toobin principle

Repeal the concept of an informed public, repress your decision to take such a drastic step. But it’s not just Jeffrey Toobin. Congress did it too. Last week on his CNN program Piers Morgan had just about finished a little speech on how you can’t have any bloke with a security clearance spewing classified information […]