Trustworthy Contacts for Whistleblowers ?
Unless you are making use of something like the defunct (so far as new submissions are concerned) WikiLeaks.org (see the Leak Directory wiki for possible alternatives) , or are using a scattergun approach by, sending anonymous letters or emails to a wide range of journalists, on a speculative basis, in the hope that they will somehow drop all their other work and concentrate on your leak, it may well be worth making informal, discreet contact with some people to whom you make choose to leak something in the future.
The scattergun speculative approach also runs an increased risk of "tipping off" your employers or the authorities about a leak, even before you have had any benefit of any publicity for the story. They may then instigate a Mole Hut or Leak Inquiry to try to track you down as a political damage limitation exercise, even if it is only a case of "going through the motions", to Pretend To be Seen To Be Doing Something, in order to protect "officially sanctioned leaks" and confidential briefings to the very same media organisations, when it suits the apparatchiki spin doctors and politicians.
Obviously if journalist, bloggers or independent regulators are under surveillance, which, does seem to be the case sometimes, then you need to take as much care with these initial, non-incriminating contacts, as when you do have something juicy to hand over to them later.
Here are some media and blogger contacts for, primarily UK Government Whistleblowers, who have some track record of discretion and actual wider publicity generation.
In no particular order of trustworthiness:
- Guido Fawkes - Paul Staines - political gossip blog (unfortunately with many stupid and nasty anonymous comment contributors) which is widely read by "Westminster Village" journalists and politicians,
- The Register - required reading for Information technology and privacy / surveillance state related news stories -
John Lettice, John Leyden, Chris Williams
- British Broadcasting Corporation - various radio and tv and web journalists, but they cannot pay for any stories.
- The Sunday Times - David Leppard
- The Guardian - David Hencke
- The Daily Mail / Mail on Sunday - Jason Lewis
- Evening Standard - Andrew Gilligan
WikiLeakS.org[no longer accepting submissions]
- The Guardian , The Observer and Vanity Fair - Henry Porter - one of the organisers of the Convention on Modern Liberty.
- David Davis MP - Conservative former Shadow Home Secretary - various Home Office immigration scandal whistleblower leaks
- Dr. Vincent Cable MP - Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman - various Treasury and Banking whistleblower leaks, Parliamentary Questions about the "Wilson Doctrine" regarding the confidentiality of MP's constituency correspondence etc. [N.B. he is now a Government Minister, a position which seems to have silenced him on these issues]
There is also a role for Trusted Intermediaries and Middlemen, to act as cut outs, between the media and a whistleblower, especially if monetary payments are being sought.
Contact Spy Blog if you want us to suggest and pass on your details to some journalists, or bloggers, or other ombudsmen, regulators or politicians who we have had dealings with before.