ParkFans Sources and Anonymity

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Dec 23, 2011
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My questions to Zachary:

What is the typical process of how information gets from a source to you?

What kind of measure do you employ to keep people's identities secretive?

Have you come across any close calls for any source when it comes to the park finding out a source?

Do you have a secret code to use amongst sources?
 
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Feb 9, 2013
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I think going in depth on source-related talk can also be a bad decision and a kind of repellant to any potential future sources. I honestly feel like this thread should not have been created, but, by all means, discuss what you feel.
 
Feb 9, 2013
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I agree. Safety of sources is something that should be known, however, I don't think certain topics should be discussed, such as this one.

Party Rocker said:
Have you come across any close calls for any source when it comes to the park finding out a source?
Sources are very timid. Any sign of the slightest trouble in the past could scare them away in the present or future.

Otherwise, I support discussion about keeping sources safe, I just don't think we should go in specific directions which have already been brought up.
 

Zachary

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I recommended the creation of this thread and will honestly answer any questions thrown out there as well as I can. I'm pretty confident in my ability to answer any of the questions asked broadly enough as to not endanger any past or future sources.

On that note, I plan to answer one or two of PR's questions tonight. Will likely get to the rest tomorrow though.
 
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b.mac

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Nicole said:
I think that the more we explain how we successfully protect sources, the safer they should feel.  So,I don't see how this thread is a bad thing.
Agreeing with this, as long as no specific person is implied to have leaked it is fine.

My main question for Zach is how he handles leaks when sources give him permission to post. I want to know primarily due to the fact that every community seems to follow their own guidelines for how to post leaks and exclusives, and how he goes about deciding when it's a good time to actually post the information he has. Things like the Mix it Up incident, the Entwined/Oktoberfest/RotB fiasco, and early information on rides like Verbolten and Tempesto.
 

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Party Rocker said:
What kind of measure do you employ to keep people's identities secretive?
Risk assessment is key. How many people have access to the information in question? Who would people assume the information came from? Is there any chance it could be an information plant by the park in an attempt to smoke out a mole? (And before anyone asks, yes, we know information has been planted by the park on multiple occasions.) What about this bit of content or information could give away even the most minute detail relating to the source? Is it possible that this information could be attributed to someone else with enough certainty to result in that 3rd party being blamed?

There are really countless scenarios we have to run through for each leak- often different depending on the content of said leak and the source involved.

  • Always, no matter what, err on the side of caution. No leak is worth someone's job.
  • Photographs, videos, etc. are all typically unpostable- they're all incredibly easy to trace.
  • Deal in information, not evidence. This is honestly one of the most important points.
  • Documents are often full of small details which are altered with each copy which is distributed- these tiny details can be used to trace the documents you have back to the person who they were given to. Any documents suspected to contain such things are unpostable.
  • And the list goes on and on...


Party Rocker said:
Have you come across any close calls for any source when it comes to the park finding out a source?
The short, simple, won't-give-anything-away-about-past-or-current-sources answer is no. Ask me again in about 30 years when everyone I've spoken to is retired and I'll have all sorts of exciting stories for you. ;)


Party Rocker said:
Do you have a secret code to use amongst sources?
Ha, no. I have a few abbreviations and bits of shorthand that I use with some of them though. Does that count? :p


Thomas said:
My question is: does Zachary use the dark green parts of his leeks, or just stick to the light green and white parts?
I don't believe in wasting any part of a leak. I'm happy to consume any and all leaks- the question is whether or not I can share them. ;)

 
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