A couple days ago, New York Times blog The Lede posted an e-mail from Columbia’s Office of Career Services to the student body. The memo reported that an alum of the university’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), currently employed by the State Department, called the office with a message to prospective government employees replete with so much quasi-totalitarian repression it could put a smile on Joseph McCarthy’s long-deceased face: don’t share WikiLeaks documents on social networking websites because it reflects one’s poor “ability to deal with confidential information.” The full text and the letter’s dire implications after the jump.
From: “Office of Career Services”
Date: November 30, 2010 15:26:53 EST:
We received a call today from a SIPA alumnus who is working at the State Department. He asked us to pass along the following information to anyone who will be applying for jobs in the federal government, since all would require a background investigation and in some instances a security clearance.
The documents released during the past few months through Wikileaks are still considered classified documents. He recommends that you DO NOT post links to these documents nor make comments on social media sites such as Facebook or through Twitter. 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.
Office of Career Services
In the tradition of Weekend Update anchor Seth Myers, REALLY anonymous Columbia grad in the State Department!?! Propagating information that would have never ended up in the news until it (only possibly) became a topic in the nation’s embarrassingly limited political debate is questionable? Is Julian Assange doing the right thing? That doesn’t matter, because America’s responding to it in the wrong way.
This topic is one that can plague our college student thoughts forever, so please share any feelings you have in the comments section below.