Snowden To Speak At South by Southwest

HOUSTON (CBS Houston) – Orgnaizers with South by Southwest (SXSW) announced Tuesday that NSA leaker Edward Snowden will be speaking at the festival.

Snowden, who is living in exile in Russia after leaking numerous NSA surveillance documents, is scheduled to speak Monday at 11 a.m. during the “Interactive” portion via satellite.  The American Civil Liberties Union’s principal technologist, Christopher Soghoian, will be speaking with Snowden.

“Surveillance and online privacy look to be one of the biggest topics of conversation at the 2014 SXSW Interactive Festival,” the announcement stated.  “The number of sessions on this topic reflect the importance of this issue to the digital creatives who converge in Austin each March.  As organizers, SXSW agrees that a healthy debate with regards to the limits of surveillance is vital to the future of the online ecosystem.”

SXSW organizers stated that the conversation will be focused on the ways technology can help protect the technology community from mass surveillance and the impact of the NSA’s spying efforts.

“Hear directly from Snowden about his beliefs on what the tech community can and must do to secure the private data of the billions of people who rely on the tools and services that we build,” the announcement stated.

A live stream of the conversation will be hosted by the Texas Tribune online.  SXSW Interactive, Gold, or Platinum badge holders will be able attend the session on site.  Also, the ACLU will post a free download of the conversation to their site later in the afternoon.

Julian Assange, Wikileaks founder, will be appearing by teleconference at SXSW on Saturday afternoon.


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