weird world of julian assange
Even though the coffee is warm and the bed is comfy, it looks like WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange time in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London is coming to an end. In a press conference today, he said that he will “soon” leave the safe house after spending two years trying to avoid extradition to the United States over rape and sexual assault allegations.
Turns out that one episode of The Sopranos where the gang goes to Italy wasn’t exaggerating: the pasta-loving peninsula is still teeming with organized crime. And now, a new WikiLeaks-inspired website is hoping to put a dent in it.
Ten anonymous Italians created the site, according to the Daily Dot, in hopes of connecting police and journalists to people with inside knowledge about mob activity.
plug that leak
Please divert your musical attention span from Miley Cyrus’s tongue to the latest clip from would-be reggaeton superstar Julian Assange.
In it, he makes a cameo appearance on Australia’s pretty-embarrassing “Rap News.” Decked out in a mullet wig, coolin in the Ecuadorian embassy, he lip-syncs about freedom of information and whatnot.
Edward Snowden’s lengthy layover in Moscow seems to have spooked the Russian government, whose security agency has reportedly shelled out major roubles for a brand new fleet of typewriters.
According to the BBC, Russia’s FSO agency has placed a nearly-$15,000 order for new typewriters in the hopes of converting their most sacred documents (like this image?) into paper form. It’s a strategy that’s apparently already being used in some of the Kremlin’s other ministries, where workers draft their most secret documents in un-leakable hardcopy form.
Fashion Turn to the Left
Digg Reader, which many bloggers would like to kiss on the mouth, is now available as an iPhone app. [TechCrunch]
Three key figures in the technology world were inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame yesterday: storied venture capitalist Marc Andreessen, the late hacktivist Aaron Swartz and open source deity (and foot thing eater) Richard Stallman. [Business Insider]
A young Icelandic man who served as a long-time Wikileaks volunteer was actually a double agent, passing information about Wikileaks onto the FBI in exchange for $5,000. Cheap date. [Wired]
In case you didn’t already transfer your X-rated material over to Tumblr, Google doesn’t want you to make money off of your porny Blogger account. [The Verge]
PayPal has launched an initiative (read: viral marketing scheme) to help tackle payments in space. Makes sense, given how much its cofounder Elon Musk is invested in making it to Mars. [PayPal blog]
New York-based network TV streaming service Aereo is launching in Chicago in September. [Deadline]
Not sure whether to file this one under “slacktivism” or “radical chic.” The AP reports that Vivienne Westwood has dedicated her latest batch of menswear to Bradley Manning, who’s been in prison since 2010 for his data dump to Wikileaks.
The AP says:
How is Julian Assange whiling away the hours while he’s sequestered inside the Ecuadorean Embassy in London?
Probably training monkeys to do his bidding and flambé-ing his way through the entire Julia Child cookbook. Possibly sunbathing.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg is teaming up with a group of high-profile investors, including Fred Wilson, Ron Conway and Paul Graham, to “push for smart immigration reform to attract and keep the best, the brightest and the hardest-working to fuel innovation and American jobs.” [March for Innovation]
It wasn’t so long ago that the Nook was the key to Barnes & Noble’s future. Now the bookseller is planning to back off of its efforts to sell its own e-reader, and is working on strengthening partnerships with tablet suppliers. [NYT]
It’s not that Julian Assange isn’t giving interviews—it’s just that he’s leading a busy life inside the Ecuadorian government’s London embassy, and it’s a question of fitting reporters in. [Ars Technica]
Kara Swisher leans into the backlash against Facebook COO’s Sheryl Sandberg’s new book. [AllThingsD]
In case you can’t wait for the competing biopics currently in production, here’s what it’s like to go on a double-date with John McAfee. [PandoDaily]
Julian Assange has filed documents that will allow the WikiLeaks founder to run for the Australian senate, clearing the way for a campaign dedicated to ”the democratic requirement of truthfulness from government, according to Read More
This should delight the Sherlock fangirls on Tumblr: Benedict Cumberbatch, who’s currently shooting The Fifth Estate, in which he plays controversial Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, is reportedly in talks to take on his next awesomely nerdy role. Deadline reports that Mr. Cumberbatch may be gearing up to play Alan Turing in a biopic about the famous British mathematician’s life.