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Not Socially Acceptable: NSA boss video ‘most hated’ on YouTube in 2013?

A YouTube video in which NSA boss Keith Alexander tries “to set the record straight” on the agency’s spying antics has nosedived. The half-hour interview triggered a wave of criticism from users, branding it the “most hated” video on YouTube.

In the wake of whistleblower Edward Snowden’s revelations on the  massive espionage programs of the NSA, the spy agency has been  hard pressed to defend its reputation. Since the security leaks  emerged in May, the NSA has embarked on a campaign to clear its  name. As part of the push, the US Defense Department published a  video on YouTube in October seeking to justify the agency’s spy  campaign.

However, the video had far from the desired effect and has been  branded as one of the “most hated” videos of the year.  Out of the 187,833 people who have viewed the video up until now  16,407 have hit the dislike button, compared to a mere 300 who   “liked” the video.

Thousands of commentators also laid into the video, accusing the  NSA of brazen propaganda.

“This NSA interview is the most-hated thing on YouTube right  now,” said Google+ user Andy Sweet.

“How fearful are the NSA that they’re resorting to releasing  propaganda on YouTube. I’m sure all of the upvotes are bots or  shills,” wrote Kevin Willock in the comments section.

Other YouTubers also rounded into Alexander’s claims that the NSA  is indispensable in the fight against terrorism and to ensure  national security.

“So you believe Angela Merkel is an insurgent and a dangerous  terrorist, Keith?” chided one YouTube user, referring the  reports the NSA tapped German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s personal  phone.

2014 was a tumultuous year for the NSA, after former CIA  contractor Edward Snowden revealed the agency’s  intelligence-gathering techniques to the world. As reports  emerged of the NSA not only spying on ordinary citizens, but also  politicians and businessmen, the international community demanded  Washington account for its actions.

The Obama administration has since sought to justify its mass  espionage as being in the interests of national security.  Moreover, in response to the revelations the government launched  a probe into the agency’s activities to assess whether it  overstepped its mandate with its mass surveillance.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed the lawsuit in June  against the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper,  because they believed the gathering of metadata was “an  invasion of privacy and an unreasonable search, it is  unconstitutional under the Fourth Amendment.”

In a court ruling last week a United States federal judge said  that the NSA’s gathering of massive amounts of metadata does not  violate the law. Judge William Pauley said the NSA “vacuums  up information about virtually every telephone call to, from, or  within the United States,” but that no evidence exists that  the spy agency abuses this program to spy on people without ties  to terrorist organizations.

“There is no evidence that the government has used any of the  bulk telephony metadata it collected for any purpose other than  investigating and disrupting terrorist attacks,” Pauley  wrote towards the end of his 54-page ruling.

The decision triggered a backlash on social media, with internet  users branding the judge “a traitor.”

Meanwhile, in a separate ruling Judge Richard Leon of the US  District Court for the District of Columbia declared that the  mass gathering of metadata was “likely  unconstitutional.”


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Comments (2)

  1. Bob Dunlap

    Loved This,I think most people are to stupid to get this,but they may say the same about me.

  2. carl

    federal judge says it is legal why would ordinary people that are trying to make a living in America have phone ties to terrorist? this is dumb.spying because they want to. invasion of privacy in case you want to know YOUR HONOR! R THEY SPYING ON YOU
    and how would you know?

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