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Columbia University warned to not discuss Wikileaks

by on06 December 2010

Freedom of speech gets another exception
Isn’t it grand how the government's mistakes come back to haunt students, of all people. An email from SIPA's Office of Career Services warns students that posting, discussing or in any way commenting Wikileaks, whether it is on twitter or Facebook, may affect your chances of getting a job in the federal government.

Apparently, "Engaging in these activities would call into question your ability to deal with confidential information, which is part of most positions with the federal government." Of course, nobody takes the effort to explain to students how the diplomatic cables leaked when dealing “with confidential information” is one of the main prerequisites.

Federal government job vacancies “would require a background investigation and in some instances a security clearance.”, it goes on saying. It does not say anything about freedom of speech, of course, as that lousy practice already seems to be heading for the window. Also, take care to close your window.

State Department’s spokesperson Philip J. Crowley denies that the government is behind this. He says that instructions have been given to State Department employees and adds:"If an employee of the State Department sent such an email, it does not represent a formal policy position."

Certain students have reacted with some of them even forming the wrong kinds of opinions – their own. Some say they’re “amused and surprised”, but the fact remains that the subject is “sensitive” and it may cost them their futures. [As if they had any in this economy. sub.ed.]

More here.

Last modified on 06 December 2010
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