Snowden Christmas Message


 Edward Snowden
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PC World, Edward Snowden's Christmas message: a child born today will have no conception of privacy, Peter Sayer, Dec. 26, 2013. ”A child born today will grow up with no conception of privacy at all,” Edward Snowden warned Wednesday in a message broadcast to U.K. television viewers. ”They’ll never know what it means to have a private moment to themselves, an unrecorded, unanalyzed thought,” said Snowden, famous for leaking documents from the U.S. National Security Agency that reveal just how much of what we say, write and do is already recorded and analyzed. ”That’s a problem because privacy matters. Privacy is what allows us to determine who we are, and who we want to be,” Snowden said in “video message” recorded for Channel 4, a commercially funded public service broadcaster owned by the U.K. government. The video, one minute 43 seconds in duration, was produced by Praxis Films, the production company of freelance journalist Laura Poitras, who has worked on a number of stories about NSA surveillance based on the documents Snowden leaked. Channel 4 broadcast the video as The Alternative Christmas Message 2013, shortly after the BBC broadcast the Queen’s traditional Christmas Message. The monarch’s message has been a traditional feature of Christmas Day broadcasting since 1932, when the Queen’s grandfather, King George V, delivered the first. Channel 4 began its series, The Alternative Christmas Message, in 1993. Previous speakers have included actors, teachers, a war veteran and, in 2008, the then President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The Queen’s message focused on family and spirituality. But, like Snowden, she also spoke of the need for a private space for personal thoughts: 

New York Times, TV Message by Snowden Says Privacy Still Matters, Channel 4, Stephen Castle, Dec. 25, 2013. In a message broadcast Wednesday on British television, Edward J. Snowden, the former American security contractor, urged an end to mass surveillance, arguing that the electronic monitoring he has exposed surpasses anything imagined by George Orwell in “1984,” a dystopian vision of an all-knowing state. “A child born today will grow up with no conception of privacy at all,” Mr. Snowden said in a Christmas Day message shown by Channel 4. “They’ll never know what it means to have a private moment to themselves — an unrecorded, unanalyzed thought.” Washington Post, Snowden says spying worse than Orwellian, Griff Witte, Dec. 25, 2013. In Christmas video, the NSA whistleblower says government surveillance has destroyed privacy. 

Washington Post, If not the NSA, who should store the phone data?  Ellen Nakashima, Dec. 25, 2013. A measure that President Obama is considering as a way to curb the National Security Agency’s mass storage of phone data is already facing resistance — not only from the intelligence community but also from privacy advocates, the phone industry and some lawmakers. Obama last week suggested that he was open to the idea of requiring phone companies to store the records and allowing the government to search them under strict guidelines. Currently, the agency stores those records itself, part of a sprawling collection program that came to light through documents shared by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Washington Post, A ‘Front-Page Rule’ is unprecedented in U.S. intelligence, Walter Pincus, Dec. 25, 2013. Presidential panel suggests covert activity shouldn’t be undertaken if the public couldn’t support it if exposed.

Washington Post, Snowden says his ‘mission’s already accomplished,’ Barton Gellman, Dec. 23, 2013. The former NSA contractor’s leaks have altered the U.S. government’s relationship with its citizens and the rest of the world. Six months later, he reflects.

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Washington Post, Sledgehammer justice Sledgehammer justice, George F. Will, Dec. 25, 2013. How the government uses mandatory minimum sentences to gut constitutional rights.