Snowden joins the twitter bandwagon, follows NSA
Edward Snowden, NSA whistle-blower who startled the world with his shocking revelations has joined the social networking site twitter. Snowden who is spending his exile in Russia will operate under the twitter handle of @snowden.
He attracted more than 171,000 followers in about an hour and had 740,000 by Tuesday evening. But Snowden himself was following only one other Twitter account – his former employer’s.
“Meanwhile, a thousand people at Fort Meade just opened Twitter,” Snowden said in a tweet, referring to the U.S. Army base in Maryland that is the home of the NSA.
Snowden, who has lived in Russia since turning over a trove of top-secret documents to reporters more than two years ago, has remained in the public eye thanks to frequent appearances and interviews using video links and sometimes even robots.
But joining the Twitterverse establishes him even more firmly as a major figure in the public discourse about surveillance and privacy that he jump-started in June 2013.
Snowden’s initial tweet was “Can you hear me now?” The message, a take-off on a cellphone provider television commercial, was retweeted 25,000 times within an hour. In his Twitter profile, Snowden described himself by saying: “I used to work for the government. Now I work for the public.”