2 Heroes in Conversation: Ed Snowden & Cory Doctorow ๐Ÿ“บ

tl;dr: Ed’s up-to-date, has political leader vibes & is pessimistic on privacy & infosec.

Update: 27th Feb: I’ve figured out how to embed YouTube videos here, so you can avoid a YouTube doomscroll:


Watch Unlisted YT vid, where I originally posted the timestamped comments. I’ve now collected thoughts into themes.
Feedback for Copperfields: Why is this on snoopy YouTube, but then Unlisted? Curious why choose YouTube over Less snoopy alternatives (like Vimeo) if not for SEO benefits? This convo deserves more attention than 40 views/day.



Ed keeps bang up-to-date on latest internet-culture

20, 37, 51, 58

Most cybersec geeks show a lack of granular knowledge about surveillance tech, but I was pleasantly surprised with Ed. Especially on the fact young people DO care about privacy, they just struggle to implement the value.

Ed increasingly talks like a future political leader

7, 11, 38

Will he ever be โ€œPresident" of more than just Freedom.Press? Unless he drops the undergrad patriotism-queasiness enough to join Republicans, doubtful POTUS. When the cyber wars begin in earnest, and Western Liberal Democracies create EU-like co-operation institutions, I can see him as a great leader of something like that though.

Ed reminds me that we generally assume privacy & security is better than it actually is

6, 33

This was hit home to me reading about the Black Market for 0-days security vulnerabilities

Update Mar 1st: humanised title


Timestamped Commentary

6:30 “frictionless = Frontload the joy, backload the pain”
7:15 he speaks with the timing & cadence of Obama. Presidential ambitions?
9:50 Cory namedrops his book title in common parlance
11:00 add: “soon it’s gonna be old enough to vote “โ€ฆ Definitely got potential voters on the mind
13:00 Ed prefers targeted policing > mass surveillance. I predict he will end up clashing with racial bias activists who seem more concerned about targeting.
18:30 naivety of pre-internet civil liberties activists
20:15 Ed rinses “Young people don’t care about privacy” pundits. People are incredibly non-genuine on socials.
21:30 Phone contact books. Why is Clubhouse having to work so hard with the carrot of invites to get contact books vs. ‘bookie ?
23:00 “so complex only machines can deal with”. Is Ed overly confident that isn’t kinda true? Things have moved on a lot since 2013 in AI.
27:30 Cory: ๐Ÿ‘ผ how can future W1n5t0n’s help without getting in trouble. Ed: ๐Ÿ˜ก “there is no revolution without risk”.
Elsberg & Drake?
30:00 if he is gonna run one day, Ed needs to decide which fights he isn’t gonna pick. I’d recommend ease off anti-patriotism.
32:30 companies say “they own your stories”.
33:30 When Ed talks about ‘Exploitation’ I get the feeling he thinks this will be seen on a historical level as a similar social structure analagous with slavery
37:00 the modern internet: “five giant websites filled with screenshots from the other four”
37:30 30k Staff at NSA
38:00 Ed in Office of Information Sharing.
38:30 when he coughs you get the feeling of Ed as a Young Fogey / beyond his years. He’s only 37
47:20 President Bush specifically ordered NSA program
49:30 Ed goes back to basics on UUID/GUID signals: “here I am”. Chain of records.
51:45 i love the withering disrespect Ed shows for sheeple “doomscrolling on Reddit & Instagram” ๐Ÿง
52:50 Ed sounds like a Covid lockdown-sceptic “in 10 years time it will be have you got the sniffles”
53:50 would be curious about what Ed thinks of Bellingcat, and how they use commercial and hacked dataset
58:00 young people day “they have the phone, they use the apps. That’s it.”
59:20 “year-by-year you get better”
60:00 Cory the modern Marx: “Seize the means of communication”

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