Mormon Church warns Wikileaks over documents

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Friday, June 20, 2008

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Wikileaks, a website which hosts copies of restricted documents, recently received a claim of copyright infringement from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS). This development follows a similar letter being sent to the Wikimedia Foundation, owners of Wikinews, regarding a link to the Wikileaks document.

The letter sent to Wikileaks demands that Wikileaks take down the document immediately. In an exclusive statement given to Wikinews, however, Wikileaks said that "WikiLeaks will not remove the handbooks, which are of substantial interest to current and former Mormons. WikiLeaks will remain a place where people from around the world can safely reveal the truth."

In another exclusive statement given to Wikinews, before the LDS incident, Wikileaks did say that if there was a substantial danger, Wikileaks would remove the documents from the site. "If aliens parked in orbit and said that they would obliterate the world if Wikileaks did not remove some document exposing them, would Wikileaks' distributed file server operators remove the document in question? Of course, even though there is no mechanism to do this, everyone involved would work out how to ."

The letter notifying Wikileaks of the copyright infringement was sent by Berne S. Broadbent, president of Intellectual Reserve, which controls the intellectual property of the Mormon Church.

On May 5, the Wikimedia Foundation received a copyright infringement claim from Intellectual Reserve. The infringement claim was addressed to Jimmy Wales, the designated agent of the Wikimedia Foundation, and requested that access to the link to Wikileaks be removed. Wikinews acted differently to Wikileaks after receiving the notice, as Wikinews took down the link soon after being made aware of the claim.

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This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
Wikipedia Learn more about Church Handbook of Instructions and Wikileaks on Wikipedia.