Citizenfour debate: How to control the controllers?


After Edward Snowden revealed documents kept in deep secrecy by US intelligence agency (NSA) and discovered that they monitor and collect data of millions of people, whistleblowers have become a topic of a large public debate. Unanswered question is still how to control the controllers and how to prevent misuse of data that institutions collect about us.

These questions were reasons to show premiere of Citizenfour in Croatia. It was held in Europa Cinema in Zagreb and was organized by Centre for Peace Studies, Multimedia Institute MaMa and Restart label. Citzenfour gathered activists, hackers, journalist, members of academia and other institutions for an interesting panel discussion.

„After September 11 there was a change of doctrine. In the name of fighting terrorism, everything is being monitored“, Vlatko Cvrtila, dean of VERN and expert for geopolitical issues, emphasized on panel dissuasion that CPS organized on Monday, 20. April. 

„We agree to be monitored and the question is how we will transform because of that cognition“; Gordna Bosanac form Centre for Peace Studies added. „Tragedies as those on Mediterranean will be more frequent. Maybe debate on spying and collection of data can contribute in prevention of such accidents, maybe if relevant institutions would know these info’s on time“, Bosanac explained.

One of the solutions is legal framework that can protect whistleblowers and encourage people to reveal information that government finds controversial. „Bosnia and Herzegovina has a good law on whistleblowers which determines fines as a mechanism to protect them. Croatia doesn’t have legal framework. One suggestion was given by the Labour party and one by Human Rights House Zagreb“, Helena Puljiz, journalist, said. 

„As a possible solution to this massive problem, I see in groups like Anonymous and groups of people that protect human rights“, Puljiz added.

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