Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Hey, Amazon, why are you doing this? Updated

”ISSAQUAH, Wash. -- An Issaquah grandmother of two American soldiers said she's outraged at Amazon for providing web hosting to WikiLeaks, the organization that has leaked thousands of classified government documents. Nadine Gulit had two grandsons deploy to Iraq and founded Operation Support Our Troops. She isn't very diplomatic about Amazon helping out WikiLeaks. "That shocked me and it surprises me that Amazon went that route," she said.”
For the first time, I've noticed that there doesn't appear to be a simple 'contact us for questions' link at Amazon, so I can't figure out how to contact them to ask "What's up with this?"

Update: Ace says Amazon kicked Wiki to the curb. And effing Joe Lieberman is taking credit for it. Yeah. All those paying customers and other interested people had NOTHING to do with it...

1 comment:

Sigivald said...

Amazon is doing it because someone paid them to.

It's quite possible that whoever paid for the hosting didn't even tell Amazon that it was "for wikileaks" at the time.

(And indeed, the entire process would likely have been automated from Amazon's point of view. It's common practice for web host providers to simply take some money and let you at a virtual server (or farm).

At most they might want a fax or whatnot to prove you are who you say you are for their own legal protection - but that wouldn't affect this.)

It is, as the linked posts eventually point out, not at all obvious that it's illegal for Amazon to host the data (and DOJ hasn't hit them with a court order to stop, now, have they?).

I suspect that if they start censoring data for content without a court order, they'd lose their "common carrier" protection against infringement and random criminal activity on their giant hosting network.

That would be devastating-to-suicidal for that segment of their business.

So, I don't see a controversy, really.

(Doubly so since, of course, the WikiLeaks data was already widely copied in the wild before Amazon was contracted to host it.)