As we were mulling over the idea of an editorial about WikiLeaks and the importance of the free flow of information, we stumbled across a media release this morning that captured the essence of the subject far better than we could put it …

New media has empowered citizens around the world to report on their circumstances, express opinions on world events, and exchange information in environments sometimes hostile to such exercises of individuals’ right to freedom of expression. At the same time, we are concerned about the determination of some governments to censor and silence individuals, and to restrict the free flow of information.

The author? Philip J. Crowley, assistant secretary, Bureau of Public Affairs, US Department of State.

The reason for the media release? An announcement that the US will host UNESCO’s World Press Freedom Day event in May 2011, in Washington, D.C.

The theme? “The theme for next year’s commemoration will be 21st Century Media: New Frontiers, New Barriers … the United States places technology and innovation at the forefront of its diplomatic and development efforts … we mark events such as World Press Freedom Day in the context of our enduring commitment to support and expand press freedom and the free flow of information in this digital age.”

Riiiight.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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