News and Media
Published: September 21, 2011
The first rule of BALTILEAKS is: You do not talk about BALTILEAKS. They didn’t really say that, but they may as well have. BALTILEAKS describes itself as “a small group of concerned private citizens” who operate a web site that seeks to “report information of public value in Baltimore” by posting Balti-centric data that citizens otherwise might not find. They remain anonymous because they “do not want personality to interfere with our mission, and we do not wish to redirect the attention of the media away from our journalistic intention to the meta-narrative about BALTILEAKS.” Okay, we get it: Don’t talk about BALTILEAKS, just focus on the information it provides. But so far, BALITLEAKS provides little. On the resources page, where data is posted, there’s a growing archive of Baltimore City Board of Estimates agendas and dated campaign-finance data about the mayor, two mayoral candidates, and a city councilmember—all information that is easily accessible elsewhere. On the news of the day—when a councilmember’s residency is called into question, say, or a campaign contribution appears dubious—they find and re-post data that is already public. More recently, they started to show their true colors, urging voters in the mayoral election to support anyone but the mayor because of her resistance to reducing property taxes. Sounds like it might be time to break the first rule of BALTILEAKS and come clean.