An Icelandic company has stepped in to assist WikiLeaks financially, by offering a way for people to donate to the website via proxy.
WikiLeaks editor-in-chief, co-founder and spokesman Julian Assange (above)- who was today arrested in London- has faced numerous financial difficulties lately. Swiss banks have closed his accounts, and PayPal has permanently restricted the group’s account. In addition, Mastercard is taking action to block payments from its card-holders to WikiLeaks.
The Icelandic company Datacell has found a solution. Visa card-holders can donate to WikiLeaks by transferring the money to Datacell, which in turn passes it on to the site.
Ólafur V. Sigurvinsson, the owner of the company, told DV, “We aren’t WikiLeaks, but we are a hosting company serving thousands of clients, among them WikiLeaks.”
Ólafur said that it’s not his concern what WikiLeaks does, but he personally doesn’t see anything wrong with their operations. At the same time, his company has been experiencing pressure to stop working with WikiLeaks.
“We get a lot of mail, and there have also been [DDOS] attacks against us,” he said in part. “If these people want to shut us down, they’re going to have to shut down every news outlet in the world. WikiLeaks is doing nothing more than distributing the information that they receive. If they weren’t getting this information, someone else would. These documents would be released whether WikiLeaks existed or not.”
Icelanders overall view WikiLeaks in a positive light. In a recent online poll on Vísir which asked, “Do you think the WikiLeaks document publication has been for the good?”, 70.6% responded “Yes”, while 29.4% believed otherwise. Furthermore, the Icelandic parliament last summer passed a resolution calling for Iceland to be a media “safe haven” for whistleblowers and informants, and Icelandic MPs speaking about WikiLeaks recently, in the wake of the diplomatic cable infodump, seemed more concerned with countries storing diplomatic cables than they did with WikiLeaks releasing them.