Wikileaks, which has been shuttered by litigation previously, now finds it self shut down by that all too familiar reason: lack of money.
The site's mission statement is to allow whistleblowers to anonymously release government and corporate documents, "an uncensorable version of Wikipedia for untraceable mass document leaking and analysis." It's done that in the past, posting leaks from many sources. Now, it needs the help of the public. On their site, they say:
To concentrate on raising the funds necessary to keep us alive into 2010, we have reluctantly suspended all other operations, but will be back soon.
We have received hundreds of thousands of pages from corrupt banks, the US detainee system, the Iraq war, China, the UN and many others that we do not currently have the resources to release. You can change that and by doing so, change the world. Even $10 will pay to put one of these reports into another ten thousand hands and $1000, a million.
We have raised just over $130,000 for this year but can not meaningfully continue operations until costs are covered. These amount to just under $200,000 PA. If staff are paid, our yearly budget is $600,000.
Although the site has won awards, including the 2008 Economist Freedom of Expression Award as well as the 2009 Amnesty International New Media Award, as it says, "these accolades do not pay the bills." The site adds "Nor can we accept government or corporate funding and maintain our absolute integrity."
Just how long the site will remain offline is unclear. However, what is clear is that if the site doesn't manage to get some influx of capital, it's probably gone for good. Here's an interview
that details how Wikileaks spends its money.