Pirated version of Snowden doc posted online

Pirated version of Snowden doc posted online
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“Citizenfour,” the Academy Award-winning documentary about Edward Snowden and other government leakers, was illegally posted on the Internet on Monday, before being taken down.

The website Thought Maybe posted a pirated copy of the film only to take it down hours later, after multiple news organizations including The Hill had falsely identified it as a legitimate and free stream of the film.


Though the illegal stream has been taken down, “Citizenfour” is available to stream through HBO in the U.S. and Channel 4 in the United Kingdom.

The movie depicts the anxious days filmmaker Laura Poitras and journalist Glenn Greenwald spent huddled in a Hong Kong hotel room with Snowden, after he fled the U.S. with a trove of millions of secret documents.

The scenes with Snowden are put together with interviews and profiles of other government leakers, such as former National Security Agency (NSA) worker William Binney.

When she accepted the Oscar for best documentary last month, Poitras used the award show stage to thank Snowden and “the many other whistleblowers" who made the film possible. 

Supporters of Snowden have pointed to the slew of awards that he and the journalists who covered his stories have won as proof of the righteousness of his leaks, against critics’ claims that he is a traitor who carelessly revealed secrets and harmed U.S. national security.


— ­­Corrected at 6:20 p.m. to note that Thought Maybe had posted a pirated version of the film.