The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has announced that Wikileaks source Chelsea Manning has been permitted to receive a packet of news articles and blog posts published by the EFF, as well as a regulatory filing related to prisoner free speech rights. The U.S. Army previously blocked Manning from receiving EFF material citing copyright issues.
After the initial packet of EFF material was rejected, Manning received a notification which explained the mail was rejected because it contained "printed Internet materials, including email, of a volume exceeding five pages per day or the distribution of which may violate U.S. copyright laws."
Manning - currently imprisoned at the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Ft. Leavenworth - was also blocked from receiving other online material on two occasions, according to the EFF. The packets blocked included tweets and posts from Vice's Broadly, Pinknews, The Independent, BoingBoing, Fight for the Future, ACLU, and the Freedom of the Press Foundation. The articles all discussed an interview that Manning did through a proxy last month.
The EFF says that it is concerned about the "overly restrictive limits on content from the Internet provided to Manning and other prisoners." They compared the situation to that of the New York prison system, which it says doesn't have a strong civil rights record. In the New York prison system, inmates are allowed five pages of Internet content, but if an article goes onto multiple pages, it is still counted as one page, a liberty that Ft. Leavenworth doesn't give.
Chelsea Manning is currently serving a 35 year prison sentence for leaking secret documents to the news organisation Wikileaks. The attention given to Wikileaks, Assange, and Manning by the media likely influenced Edward Snowden's decision to leak National Security Agency (NSA) documents which detail the extent of the spying that is conducted by the agency. Wikileaks paid for Snowden's accommodation in China and his flight to Russia where he resides today, fearing an unfair trial if he returns to the US.