AssangeDAO is the new face of modern-day justice! The newly formed decentralized autonomous organization raised $7 Million to fund the legal needs of imprisoned WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange.
The Australian-born publisher, editor and activist founded the controversial website WikiLeaks. Basically, it published news leaks and classified media provided by anonymous sources. It attracted international attention in 2010 when it exposed a series of leaks provided by U.S. Army Intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning. Fast forward to 2019, Assange was arrested in London and has been in jail for the better part of the last three years.
So what triggered AssangeDAO to launch this initiative? Last December 2021, the High Court in London ruled that Assange could be extradited to the U.S. to face the charges. If this pushes through, he could be sentenced to up to 175 years in prison. Thus, AssangeDAO is rallying behind him to prevent this from happening.
According to its website, AssangeDAO’s top priority is to “fight for the freedom of Julian Assange.” Primarily, they would raise funds to help with his legal fees. In addition, they plan to run campaigns geared towards raising “public awareness on the systemic failure of our justice systems.”
AssangeDAO is confident that they can make a difference. “We, the cypherpunks, are rallying to the cause of a fellow cypherpunk in distress. It is our belief that DAOs are a powerful coordination mechanism that cypherpunks can wield to free Assange,” the blog reads.
Impressively, the DAO started to mobilize in a Telegram group on December 10, 2021. Impressively, this was the same day that the U.S. government won its appeal of a British court ruling that barred Assange’s extradition to the U.S. Shortly after the creation of the Telegram channel, Assange’s brother Gabriel Shipton joined. He informed the DAO that an NFT collaboration with Assange was in progress.
Hence, AssangeDAO is also actively promoting the upcoming Pak x Assange “Censored” NFT Collection.
Pak x Assange Censored NFT Collection
The upcoming NFT auction centers around a collection between digital artist Pak and Assange himself. The NFT Collection marketed as “Censored” will drop tomorrow, February 7. It features a dynamic 1/1 NFT and open edition in which anyone can participate.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) January 31, 2022
Basically, AssangeDAO raised ETH to purchase the 1/1 dynamic NFT. The dynamic NFT is minted using manifold.xyz smart contracts and will be auctioned off on a dedicated website by Pak. Then, proceeds from the NFT sale will go towards “the Assange Defense fund for legal fees and campaigning to help raise awareness on Assange’s extradition trial.”
Legal DAO Landscape
AssangeDAO shared that they drew inspiration from the FreeRossDAO (which raised $12 million to free Silk Road Founder Ross Ulbricht). It is also following the footsteps of ConstitutionDAO. So it will also be collecting ETH via JuiceBox in which each participant will contribute ETH and receive a proportional share of a governance token, $JUSTICE.
$JUSTICE will be the token that governs the AssangeDAO. In addition, if the DAO wins the Censored auction, the NFT will be held on behalf of the $JUSTICE holders in a multi-sig. Then, the community will decide via governance what to do with the NFT and the future roadmap of the DAO.
This use case proves that the utility of DAOs is dynamic and multi-faceted. It goes beyond gaming and collectible projects because it can have real-life influence.