GamesBeat

Zynga’s Mark Pincus asked Obama to pardon NSA leaker Edward Snowden

Above: Mark Pincus of Zynga at GamesBeat 2012.

Image Credit: VentureBeat

Zynga chief Mark Pincus asked President Barack Obama to pardon Edward Snowden, the contractor who leaked details about the extensive warrantless surveillance conducted by National Security Agency, according to anonymous sources cited by CNN.

Pincus’ request reflects Silicon Valley’s sense of betrayal around the broad NSA spying program that Snowden revealed. The revelations have shocked Americans and created tense relations between the government and tech companies such as Google and Yahoo, whose vast data sources were evidently tapped by the NSA without permission. Cisco has said it could lose overseas customers due to the fears of further unauthorized surveillance.

Officially, Zynga declined comment. We confirmed that Pincus made the request with an unnamed source. The move isn’t out of character for Pincus, who cares about a variety of issues beyond the social and mobile games that his San Francisco company makes.

Snowden is in Russia under temporary asylum, and U.S. authorities want him returned to stand trial for charges associated with the leaks. According to the Washington Post, Obama said he could not grant the pardon.

Senior executives from AT&T, Yahoo, Apple, Netflix, Twitter, Google, Microsoft and Facebook were among those in attendance at a meeting with Obama on Tuesday.

More about the companies and people from this article:

Zynga Inc. is the world's largest social game developer with more than 232 million monthly active users playing their games which include CityVille, FarmVille, FrontierVille, Words With Friends, Mafia Wars, Zynga Poker, Cafe World, and... read more »

Mark Jonathan Pincus (born February 13, 1966) is an American Internet entrepreneur best known as the co-founder of Zynga, which makes online social games. Pincus also founded Freeloader, Inc., Tribe Networks, and Support.com.Pincus ser... read more »

Edward Snowden is an American former technical contractor for the United States National Security Agency (NSA) and a former employee of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) who leaked details of several top-secret U.S. and British gov... read more »

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