Amazon denies being pressured to dump Wikileaks

Updated: Claims terms of service violated; Wikileaks calls company's statement a lie is denying widespread reports suggesting that pressure from the office of Sen. Joseph Lieberman, chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, prompted it to boot Wikileaks from Amazon Web Services earlier this week.

Wikileaks replies that Amazon's pants are on fire.

From the Amazon statement:

There have been reports that a government inquiry prompted us not to serve WikiLeaks any longer. That is inaccurate.

There have also been reports that it was prompted by massive DDOS attacks. That too is inaccurate. There were indeed large-scale DDOS attacks, but they were successfully defended against.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) rents computer infrastructure on a self-service basis. AWS does not pre-screen its customers, but it does have terms of service that must be followed. WikiLeaks was not following them. There were several parts they were violating. For example, our terms of service state that "you represent and warrant that you own or otherwise control all of the rights to the content... that use of the content you supply does not violate this policy and will not cause injury to any person or entity." It's clear that WikiLeaks doesn't own or otherwise control all the rights to this classified content. Further, it is not credible that the extraordinary volume of 250,000 classified documents that WikiLeaks is publishing could have been carefully redacted in such a way as to ensure that they weren't putting innocent people in jeopardy. Human rights organizations have in fact written to WikiLeaks asking them to exercise caution and not release the names or identities of human rights defenders who might be persecuted by their governments.

And here is the Wikileaks response on Twitter:

Amazon's press release does not accord with the facts on public record. It is one thing to be cowardly. Another to lie about it.

Meanwhile, Wikileaks has also seen its domain name service cut off by, a subsidiary of Dynamic Network Services. No word on whether that action was preceded by a call from Sen. Lieberman's office.

(Update: LA Times has a story and video about Wikileaks' new Web hosting home, which is located in an old Cold War bomb shelter carved into a mountain in Sweden.)

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