The non-fungible token (NFT) piece created by the National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden has been bought for $5.4 million in Ethereum.
In 2013, the computer scientist exposed numerous global surveillance programs run by the National Security Agency. At that time, he was a subcontractor for the NSA and an employee of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
While many citizens called him a hero, the U.S officials referred to his actions as “grave damage” to the U.S. intelligence capabilities.
The NFT, titled “Stay Free” portrays a picture of Edward Snowden’s face made from the pages of a U.S. appeals court ruling that the telephone data collection by the NSA was illegal and unconstitutional.
Edward Snowden to Donate NFT Proceeds to Foundation
Snowden auctioned off the NFT piece on Foundation, a community-backed NFT marketplace. “Stay Free” is Snowden’s first NFT and was sold for 2,224 ETH, which is approximately $5.4 million. He revealed that the profits would be donated to the Freedom of the Press Foundation that aims to protect journalists from government surveillance.
Foundation CEO and co-founder Kayvon tweeted that Snowden’s NFT sales “goes far beyond the price tag”. He continued that the underlying technology of non-fungible tokens will “reshape the world” and can limit the misuse of power which Edward Snowden spoke against.
A reminder that the symbolism of @Snowden minting his first NFT goes far beyond the price tag.
— kayvon🪐 (@saturnial) April 16, 2021
An NFT is a non-interchangeable digital asset that represents a piece of digital artwork, video, audio. NFTs have exploded recently with news of huge sales making headlines. Last month, Beeple sold an NFT “The First 5000 Days” for a whopping $69.3 million at Christie’s – the highest price paid for an NFT so far.
Edward Snowden is currently in Moscow after the Russian authorities granted him permanent residency. He is a persona-non-grata in the United States. On September 2, 2020, a U.S. federal court ruled that the NSA activities exposed by Snowden were unconstitutional.