"The government blew it." Mark Zuckerberg And Marissa Mayer Talk NSA Surveillance

Transparency is the order of the day for both Mark Zuckerberg and Marissa Mayer—while Zuck thinks the government "blew it," Yahoo's CEO told a conference that her firm preferred to work within the system than risk jail.

Two of technology's big beasts have revealed tension between the U.S. government and the tech sector since the NSA surveillance scandal emerged.

Mark Zuckerberg and Marissa Mayer, whose firms—Yahoo, and Facebook—were both accused in documents leaked by Edward Snowden earlier this year as participating in the intelligence agency's PRISM program, appeared separately at a TechCrunch conference, where they were asked about the subject.

"The government blew it," said Zuck. "They blew it on communicating the balance of what they were going for with this." On Monday, Facebook's general counsel, Colin Stretch, announced that the firm would sign a petition asking for more transparency regarding the attitude of federal agencies to spying on U.S. citizens.

Mayer said a fear of jail kept her and her executives from going public with its battles with the secretive FISA court, which handles the NSA and other agencies' surveillance requests. "Releasing classified information is treason and you are incarcerated," she said. "When you lose and you don't comply, it's treason. We think it makes more sense to work within the system."

(As a side issue—and given that Orange Is The New Black—should a senior executive of a billion-dollar company be prepared to go to jail to protect both the firm's image as well as its users?)

[Image: Flickr user Nestor's Blurrylife]

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4 Comments

  • IBScipio

    So let's see......

    Zuckerberg is going psychopathic if he thinks that blaming the NSA for their not tellimg him all of what the NSA was going to use the data for, IS ANYTHING BUT A PISS-POOR ATTEMPT TO SHIFT BLAME ZUCKERBERG EARNED BY ENABLING & ASSISTING THE GOVT TO SUBVERT THE CONSTITUTION. A traitor shows his spots.

    Marissa Mayer appearently thinks it perfectly acceptable for the head of such huge (and wealthy enough to pay potential legal bills) company to publically admit she is a complete COWARD who will throw yahoo users as well as the US Constitution under the bus at the mere mention of actually earning her bloated paychecks by doing what is right. Nobody in her position stupid enough to believe the government would actually arrest, put on trial, and incarcerate ANY CEO of any company with so high a profile is competent enough, to have the job . The TV news reports of her arrest on behalf of We the people, would have brought NSA treasons against ALL Americans to light long ago, and made her a national hero. Instead, she claims to have folded like a lawnchair at the mere mention of adversity and capitulates. Like Zucky above, this is a piss-poor excuse for activities wholly Un-American.

    When all goes south, put them on the list of Traitors to be "questioned at length" about their Treason against all Americans.

  • sleepd

    Every other country with a modicum of technology in house is doing this. You are retarded if you think otherwise. 

  • bdcstrong1

    this SHOULD read as follows - "...should a senior executive of a billion-dollar company be prepared to go to jail to protect both the firm's image as well as its users?) "