National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden, who is currently living in Russia after his passport was revoked by the U.S in 2013, was recently selected for the Electronic Frontier Foundationâ€™s Pioneer Awards, an event that recognizes those protecting freedom on the Internet.
In an interview to Kashmir Hill for Fusion, he talks about how he is spending lots of time online and how life has been for the ex-analyst who worked for the NSA, after leaking massive amounts of classified documents on communications espionage committed by the U.S government.
He also talks about how the government is "working overtime to degrade language, rebranding assassinations as 'targeted killings' and calling 'mass surveillance' bulk collection. Theyâ€™re trying to reduce understanding so people donâ€™t get invested."
When asked what his "advice for other would-be whistleblowers" was, here's what he said:
Think it through. Think about the likelihood of impact and the likelihood of discovery. Think about the best and most careful way you can go about it that maximizes public good while mitigating any potential risks no matter how small and unrealistic. Because you will be held to an accountability standard that is extraordinary compared to that of your critics.
And remember you donâ€™t have to be somebody special. No one expects you to be the leader of your field. Whistleblowers are elected by circumstance. More critical than who you are is what you see. Be conscious of what youâ€™re witnessing every day. Think about what youâ€™re party to and what youâ€™re complicit in. Then think about what is right for you, whatâ€™s right for your family, and whatâ€™s right for the world you want to live in.