Assange defends WikiLeaks at Net Prophet in Cape Town

Assange defends WikiLeaks at Net Prophet in Cape Town

Julian Assange speaks to Net Prophet via WeChat

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange spoke at the NetProphet conference in Cape Town, South Africa, saying his website was not intended to “change the world for the better” but nonetheless has “done some good”.

Appearing via WeChat video link at the sixth annual Net Prophet conference, Assange said WikiLeaks was meant to prevent injustices from going unquestioned.

“It’s not necessarily about changing the world for the better. I don’t look at it like that,” Assange said, adding it takes a “lot of work” to make changes to global society.

Preventing things from becoming worse – or more injustice occurring – is a sufficient end in itself, Assange said.

According to the WikiLeaks founder, it is vital to ensure no area or “territory” of “global life” goes unquestioned, adding WikiLeaks may be seen to act as a deterrent against the “worst organised unjust plans”.

“I think yes we have done some pretty significant work, which has done some good,” he said.

While Assange said he does not regret any of the WikiLeaks process, his only “small” regret is turning to the United Kingdom and the Guardian newspaper, saying it is very difficult to find a “geo-political advisor” who does not have an intrinsic link or loyalty to the system it advises on.

Assange also said in his view Bitcoin is the “most intellectually interesting development in the past two years”, and the “takeoff of cryptocurrencies in general”, because, setting aside the currency element, Bitcoin represents a new way of creating a global consensus through technology.

“If you look at cryptographically enforced agreements, such as Bitcoin, it’s a new type of law,” Assange said, adding the code enforces how an agreement is completed.

“There is no regulation, rather the regulation is this cryptographic agreement.”

According to Assange, the regulation over and above the financial services sector through cryptographic protocols is “really very innovative”, and is an abstraction of the relationship between organisations and consumers.

“We’ve got a new way of forming new societal agreements for across the whole society, not just those who form them,” Assange said.

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