Especially in the earlier days, there was a tension for many sites in covering Assange — and by extension, WikiLeaks — and it was very much visible in the way Gawker chose to approach the subject.

On the one hand, WikiLeaks became famous because it facilitated the publication of several important, consequential stories about the security state by providing leaked classified documents to journalists.

On the other hand, WikiLeaks, the organization, has more and more existed as a support structure for the career of the man who founded it — a man who is currently holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London, avoiding extradition to Sweden on sexual assault charges.

WikiLeaks and its supporters have argued that such criticism is a distraction from its mission.

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