It is an unbelievable fact that the United States government keeps people under surveillance and has people’s privacy. And if we are journalists, we should convey the fact no matter how it takes a risk, like people in this film.
In 2013, Laura Poitras, who is a director of this documentary film, and Glem Greenwald who is a journalist working at The Gurdian received encrypted emails from an anonymous source who called himself Citizenfour. According to Citizenfour, the United States government secretly has a watch list of people, and people’s privacy is illegally invaded by the government. The government can link one piece of data to another piece of data, and then identify the person’s dairy routine or when he or she meets someone by comparing with the other information. Therefore, there is no longer freedom in the country, our private discussion and right to open speech is no longer protected.
After several communications with the emails, Poitras thought they need to contact each other in a securer way, so they decided to meet in a hotel room in Hong Kong. Citizenfour is a 29 year old man named Edward Snowden. They started filming their conversations as a documentary and reporting that the United States government hides the fact of invading people’s prvacy to the media. And in the end of the film, Greenwald mentioned 1.2 million people are on their watch list in the United States.
Snowden deeply understands how dangerous the government invades the people’s privacy. That is why he decided to be a whistle-blower. An American soldier, Chelsea Manning was another whistle-blower, who revealed classified information of the nation.
These people are very important to the field of journalism because what Snowden did taking his risk was to tell the truth to the nation. He knew that if he doesn’t take action, the truth would never be revealed and people would never know that fact.
Even though the fact that the government surveils people would not be changed and they still continue on it, conveying the truth is a very important role in the journalism field, and people like Snowden and Manning accomplished it by reporting to the media.