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Information is good

- July 31, 2010

Washington Post and Slate reporter Anne Applebaum wrote a dismissive column about Wikileaks, saying that they “offer nothing more than raw data.”

Applebaum argues that “The notion that the Internet can replace traditional news-gathering has just been revealed to be a myth. . . . without more journalism, more investigation, more work, these documents just don’t matter that much.”

Fine. But don’t undervalue the role of mere data! The usual story is that we don’t get to see the raw data underlying newspaper stories. Wikileaks and other crowdsourced data can be extremely useful, whether or not they replace “traditional news-gathering.”

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