Wall Street Journal’s Safe House

I find it interesting that after calling for Julian Assange’s indictment, the Wall Street Journal has gone and set up their own secure documents leak site, called Safe House. Here’s the gist.

They want your help!

Documents and databases: They’re key to modern journalism. But they’re almost always hidden behind locked doors, especially when they detail wrongdoing such as fraud, abuse, pollution, insider trading, and other harms. That’s why we need your help.

If you have newsworthy contracts, correspondence, emails, financial records or databases from companies, government agencies or non-profits, you can send them to us using the SafeHouse service.

Here’s what to send them!

SafeHouse’s interests are as broad as the world The Wall Street Journal covers – including politics, government, banking, Wall Street, deals and finance, corporations, labor, law, national security and foreign affairs.

We’re open to receiving information in nearly any format, from text files to audio recordings and photos.

Please do not submit press releases, letters to the editor or other Journal feedback to SafeHouse – see below for where to send those. Please also be sure to read the SafeHouse Terms of Use.

What they’ll do with your leaks:

Documents and tips provided to SafeHouse will be vetted by some of the world’s most experienced and responsible investigative reporters and editors.

A veteran Journal editor will review each submission, and coordinate any follow-up. Being able to contact you if needed can greatly help our ability to pursue a story quickly. We strongly encourage you to provide contact info if anonymity is not required.

Despite this being a great idea and despite the honest truth that every major newspaper should have a site just like this, I can’t help but think sometime in the near future we’re going to be reading about the time Anonymous sent penis pictures to the WSJ.

update: Gawker points out this caveat in the TOS: “Except when we have a separately negotiated confidentiality agreement… we reserve the right to disclose any information about you to law enforcement authorities or to a requesting third party, without notice, in order to comply with any applicable laws and/or requests under legal process, to operate our systems properly, to protect the property or rights of Dow Jones or any affiliated companies, and to safeguard the interests of others.”

Feel free to leak, except just know that the WSJ won’t do anything to keep you, as a leaker, anonymous or protected from the police or the corporation you work for. So basically, just stick to wikileaks.

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