Over the longer term, it’s likely that personal or sensitive data will continue to be hacked and released, and often for political purposes. This in turn raises a set of questions that we should all consider, related to all the traditional questions of openness and accountability. Weaponized transparency of private data of people in democratic institutions by unaccountable entities is destructive to our political norms, and to an open, discursive politics.
Weaponized transparency, especially when it affects the lives of ordinary persons who take an interest in the political process, is dangerous for a range of reasons. And responsible journalists – to say nothing of publishers such as Wikileaks – ought to be condemned when they fail to adequately protect the private interests of such ordinary persons.