Zynga founder asks President to pardon Snowden
Tech leaders tell President Obama that NSA spying is hurting business
President Barack Obama met with the United States' biggest technology firms on Tuesday to talk about improving Healthcare.gov and issues related to the National Security Agency's surveillance activities. The NSA spying program came to light due to leaks by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. Snowden is currently under temporary asylum in Russia.
Senior executives from AT&T, Yahoo, Apple, Netflix, Twitter, Google, Microsoft and Facebook were among those in attendance. According to CNN, Zynga founder Mark Pincus suggested to the President that Snowden should be pardoned for the leaks. The President said he could not do so, according to an adjoining report by the Washington Post.
The industry leaders pressured the President to make changes to the NSA's programs, due to concerns that they could take a financial hit. Cisco Systems has seen customers turn away from America-branded equipment over privacy concerns, while AT&T, Verizon, and IBM are facing displeased and litigious shareholders.
"This was an opportunity for the President to hear from CEOs directly as we near completion of our review of signals intelligence programs, building on the feedback we've received from the private sector in recent weeks and months," said the White House in a statement.
NSA reforms will reportedly be announced in January.