Friday, October 08, 2004
Indymedia in trouble with the law: The anti-America collection of Web sites known collectively as Indymedia have had their server hard drives seized by government investigators.
SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- A Texas Internet company said Friday it gave U.S. government officials the hard drives from a pair of its Web servers leased to online journalists and others.
San Antonio-based Rackspace Managed Hosting said it turned over the equipment after receiving a court order under an international treaty governing investigations of crimes such as terrorism, kidnapping and money laundering.
Officials from the Independent Media Center, whose London office leased the Web servers for affiliates in more than two dozen countries, says it has been kept in the dark about what the U.S. investigators might be looking for.
"We don't know what court made the order or why, and we don't know the (federal) agency involved," said Hep Sano, an IMC spokeswoman in San Francisco.
The IMC, better known as "Indymedia", is a loosely organized collective of online journalists and others posting information to Web sites.
Indymedia describes itself as "a democratic media outlet for the creation of radical, accurate and passionate tellings of truth."
Its central Web site on Friday included stories about a lesbian activist's murder in Sierra Leone, protests against welfare reform in Germany and last weekend's march in Washington against the Iraq war.
The hard drives surrendered in London hosted Internet sites for a disparate group of Indymedia outlets. Most were based in Europe, but a few were from South America and one is in western Massachusetts.
Officials from the U.S. Justice Department in Washington did not immediately respond to a call seeking comment.
Rackspace says the Indymedia investigation did not arise in the United States, and that the company is "acting as a good corporate citizen" and that the court order it received prohibits further comment.