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Condemn News Media for Attacking Edward Snowden’s Private Life

July 3, 2013

By Saralyn Elisabeth

Shortly after Edward Snowden leaked NSA documents about its surveillance of everyday Americans, the very news media outlets that should have been reporting on the case turned to dramatizing, and even at times attacking, Snowden’s private life and trivializing his contribution. Nearly without exception, major news media outlets such as CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and more spent air time discussing Snowden’s personal life—everything from where he grew up to the life of his girlfriend, who had an online blog and posted often-racy self portraits.

The problem is not that they were investigating someone involved in what is certainly a major news story, but that it quickly took the form of entertainment. Watching the anchors discuss Snowden’s girlfriend’s life was like watching an entertainment reporter on the red carpet of the Academy Awards. This is not what we count on our news media for. We expect the news media to keep us updated on the investigation of the documents uncovered by the whistle-blower, the extradition efforts, the moral and ethical dilemmas presented by the case, how commentators and the rest of the country are responding to the information, and to generally give us the facts we would not otherwise be able to get for ourselves. Read the rest of the story at


From → Commentary

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