April 4, 2014
The following is audio of the conference last week in Austin hosted by the Intelligence Studies Project, a joint venture of the Strauss Center and Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin. The conference was entitled, “The National Security Agency at the Crossroads.”
Session 5: The Content Collection Controversy
Moderator: Bobby Chesney (UT)
Participants: Timothy Edgar (Brown University), Jennifer Granick (Stanford University)
The metadata session was followed by a session that focused exclusively on content-collection. The dynamic was similar: a vigorous debate between the panelists following a careful preliminary exposition of the issues, punctuated by highly-informative interjections from current and former NSA officials. The end result was a very rare opportunity to match strongly-framed critiques of NSA activity with extremely well-informed, and direct responses. This session in many respects contained the most sustained, direct engagement between NSA officials and their critics. The discussions between Granick and Edgar and the current and former officials in the audience are unlike any other public discussion we have heard about what NSA does and does not do in the way in the way of content collection and use of the information thus collected.