March 26, 2017

WikiLeaks Increases Publication Rate

When Julian Assange met with reporters on January 11th, he promised his self-described whistleblowing website WikiLeaks would increase its publication rate of diplomatic documents. Since this announcement, not only has the publication rate at WikiLeaks increased, but the consistency of publication at WikiLeaks has also increased. In fact, there were more diplomatic documents published on January 13th than any previous day of publication, with a total of 353 documents.

Also, WikiLeaks has published documents every day since January 9th, which follows a nine day period from December 31st to January 8th when there were only five days of publication. This shows a more consistent pattern of publication at WikiLeaks. The chart below displays each day WikiLeaks has published diplomatic documents and the number of documents released each day.

This data was gathered solely on the basis of the First Amendment.

As of January 21st, WikiLeaks has published 2,628 diplomatic documents. This is only a fraction (1.04%) of the 251,287 diplomatic documents that WikiLeaks possesses. Since WikiLeaks began publishing these documents on November 28th (55 days ago), the current rate of publication would require over fourteen years to publish all the files. In other words, WikiLeaks would be releasing this set of documents until 2025.

The average number of documents released each day are also expanding. From November 28th to January 11th, including the four days without publications, WikiLeaks released an average of 45 diplomatic documents each day. Though, since January 12th, WikiLeaks released an average of 60 documents each day. Overall, WikiLeaks now averages a release of 48 documents each day. Clearly, the publication rate of diplomatic documents has increased, as Assange promised.

However, the prime reason for the increase in the daily average of released documents is due to the colossal release of January 13th, when 353 documents were released. To account for outliers, the median is a more accurate indicator than the average. From November 28th to January 11th, WikiLeaks released a median amount of 23 documents each day. Since January 12th, WikiLeaks released a median amount of 25 documents each day – reflecting a swifter publication rate after Assange vowed to step up his organizations efforts on January 11th.

Meanwhile, Assange is due in UK court on February 7th and 8th for an extradition hearing that will determine whether he will be sent to Sweden for questioning about sexual allegations. Due to the lack of a criminal charge, extradition specialists say it would be very atypical to extradite Assange. Despite this likelihood, the extradition of Assange is still possible, especially with such a controversial figure like himself. In the end, this case will be a landmark decision for the UK legal system, as well as the international legal system.

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