Traitor or hero? None other than controversial privacy activist Edward Snowden — joined by journalist Glenn Greenwald — has been announced as be the keynote speakers for the World Affairs Conference (WAC), co-organized by Upper Canada College and Branksome Hall, and Canada’s oldest annual student-run conference, on Monday, Feb. 2.
A message to our community, sent Tuesday, Jan. 27, has already led to some lively feedback, commentary and opinion regarding our student organizers’ choice of special guest. Tell us what you think. Although Snowden will be taking questions from students only, we invite you to also enter into the debate surrounding this event, by sharing a question or two you’d like to ask Snowden in the box below.
Addressing a national student audience of 900 delegates from 27 different schools in Grades 10 through 12, the topic of the live, moderated discussion will be “Privacy vs. Security: A Discussion of Personal Privacy in the Digital Age.” This keynote represents the first time Snowden will address a live audience comprised of high school students.
WAC continues its tradition of welcoming provocative speakers to debate global issues. Snowden, the former National Security Agency intelligence contractor, revealed classified documents relating to unconstitutional surveillance practices and international counter-intelligence operations. He will speak live via video from Russia.
Joining Snowden on video from Brazil is the journalist he entrusted to break the story; Greenwald’s work, based on the Snowden disclosure, won a Pulitzer Prize last year. By all accounts, Greenwald and Snowden’s mutual admiration and combined intellectual clout make for riveting discussion.
A livestream may be accessed remotely at 7 p.m. on Feb. 2 at ucc.on.ca/wac-2015-keynote.
We recognize that this is a charged issue, and people feel strongly. We do ask that comments remain civil and that participants refrain from making personal remarks about each other.