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[liberationtech] Corporate spying question

Alan Snitow and Deborah Kaufman amsnitow at
Wed Jul 10 11:07:07 PDT 2013

The amazing work of Snowden and Poitras and the discussions on libtech have left us with some questions related to a film we are working on:

1. U.S. intelligence agencies have long worked closely with major multinational corporations from overthrowing governments to scoping out risk. So far in the NSA revelations, we haven't seen anything much about the sharing with "old economy" multinationals like Exxon or Chevron. Has anyone come across coverage about such connections, especially given the privatization of intelligence services and the fact that some of the private companies working for NSA et al may also be working for corporate clients? 

2. Many large companies work closely with the Pinkertons of today, detective agencies skilled in forensics. Many corporations--from meat packers to soft drink companies do opposition research to identify critics and neutralize or intimidate them if possible. Chevron, for example, has employed at least four detective agencies in its effort to defeat the Ecuadoran judgement against the oil company for polluting the Amazon and poisoning local indigenous groups. Chevron is shelling out hundreds of millions of dollars a year in this effort. Is there evidence that anyone has seen of collaboration between such companies and NSA, etc. to stifle dissent in the recent revelations?

Our film is about connecting privacy and dissent--focusing on the role of multinationals using discovery, forensics, and other techniques to identify and silence critics. 

Best, Alan and Deborah

Alan Snitow & Deborah Kaufman
Snitow-Kaufman Productions
2600 Tenth Street #603
Berkeley, CA 94710
510 841-1068
amsnitow at
Facebook: Snitow-Kaufman Productions

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