Wikileaks and Julian Assange have been awarded the 2011 Walkley Award for Outstanding Contribution to Journalism. Not as globally renowned as the Pulitzers, they are nevertheless the Australian equivalent and still an award that retains some degree of credibility and integrity (contra MTV awards or Oscars).
On one level, this is fantastic. The public, fickle as always and with the attention span of gnats, have allowed Assange to largely become the forgotten man – whilst the attacks to destroy him have in no way abated. Journalists are at least making a token effort to acknowledge the man. Any journalist that remembers their code of ethics and standards and actually still practices genuine journalism knows full well that the act of doing their job as the public’s watchdog could land them in a situation similar to Assange’s at any time. In many parts of the world, it is still one of the most dangerous occupations. (more…)