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Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:15 AM

AP Editor: Do Not Describe Edward Snowden As A 'Whistleblower'

Michael Calderone

AP Editor: Do Not Describe Edward Snowden As A 'Whistleblower'

The Guardian has labeled Edward Snowden a whistleblower after the NSA contractor revealed himself Sunday as the source for several recent surveillance scoops.

But some news organization have been less quick to describe Snowden as a "whistleblower," opting instead for terms like "source" or "leaker."

Associated Press standards editor Tom Kent told staff Monday that "whether the actions exposed by Snowden and (WikiLeaks source Bradley) Manning constitute wrongdoing is hotly contested, so we should not call them whistle-blowers on our own at this point."

<...>

The AP's style guidelines are often followed in newsrooms, where discussions about Snowden -- and his motivations -- are surely taking place today among editors and reporters. The full memo is below:

Colleagues, With two secret-spilling stories in the news -- NSA/Snowden and Wikileaks/Manning -- let's review our use of the term "whistle-blower" (hyphenated, per the Stylebook).

A whistle-blower is a person who exposes wrongdoing. It's not a person who simply asserts that what he has uncovered is illegal or immoral. Whether the actions exposed by Snowden and Manning constitute wrongdoing is hotly contested, so we should not call them whistle-blowers on our own at this point. (Of course, we can quote other people who call them whistle-blowers.)

A better term to use on our own is "leakers." Or, in our general effort to avoid labels and instead describe behavior, we can simply write what they did: they leaked or exposed or revealed classified information.

Sometimes whether a person is a whistle-blower can be established only some time after the revelations, depending on what wrongdoing is confirmed or how public opinion eventually develops.

Tom

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-calderone/ap-snowden-whistleblower_b_3416380.html

"Most significant" leak in history, and likely one of the dumbest.
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022987178

11 replies, 1375 views

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Arrow 11 replies Author Time Post
Reply AP Editor: Do Not Describe Edward Snowden As A 'Whistleblower' (Original post)
ProSense Jun 2013 OP
uponit7771 Jun 2013 #1
ProSense Jun 2013 #2
jaysunb Jun 2013 #3
ProSense Jun 2013 #4
eissa Jun 2013 #5
JDPriestly Jun 2013 #7
JDPriestly Jun 2013 #6
SoapBox Jun 2013 #8
sibelian Jun 2013 #9
ProSense Jun 2013 #10
sibelian Jun 2013 #11

Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:20 AM

1. Yeap, he revealed nothing illegal and nothing people didn't know to SOME degree that the alphabet

...boys were looking into peoples lives.

One could make the argument that the meta data dragnet is way too broad but that's what we have elections for, to vote for people who are going to change the laws in regards to this crap

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Response to uponit7771 (Reply #1)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:29 AM

2. Yeah, like people could just decide they don't like something and leak it. n/t

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Response to ProSense (Reply #2)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:33 AM

3. Exactly. n/t

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Response to jaysunb (Reply #3)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 12:53 AM

4. There is a WH petition to pardon.

Supporters admitting guilt.

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Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 01:33 AM

5. He's no Karen Silkwood

that's for sure. He didn't expose any illegal activities, corruption or abuse. He doesn't like a legal policy and decided that the classified info he was stupidly entrusted with should be made public. You know -- because the government having classified info is just one step away from tyranny

I'm still pissed someone with his very limited background had such access. I know people who went to some great schools and posses strong skills, yet struggle to find decent employment, let alone a job that pays six figures.

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Response to eissa (Reply #5)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 02:54 AM

7. Collecting that much information chills the exercise of

constitutional rights like association, speech, press, just to name a few. It may well eventually be deemed illegal.

The government can subpoena pen registers, but they are now doing it broadly and if what Snowden says is true, without probable cause and in fact without any reason at all to collect them. That may shill the right to freedom of the press if they are doing it to journalists (and judging from the Fox News scandal) they may well be doing just that.

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Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 02:52 AM

6. I disagree with the AP. It is very likely in my opinion that

this program may be unconstitutional. It will chill people's right to association because the government is watching who we communicate and associate with.

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Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 03:19 AM

8. Some of ya'all better be more concerned with

the KKKoch Brothers buying up the Tribune papers.

That's creepy.

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Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 03:24 AM

9. Your sensitivy to the appearances of things again, eh, Prosense?


Not what things are but how they appear. What they are called.

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Response to sibelian (Reply #9)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:25 AM

10. You make no sense, and please get over yourself. n/t

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Response to ProSense (Reply #10)

Tue Jun 11, 2013, 08:59 AM

11. Oh, I make plenty of sense. nt.


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