Tech leaders urge Obama to 'move aggressively' on NSA reform

McClatchy Washington BureauDecember 17, 2013 

Obama Tech Companies

President Barack Obama meets with technology executives in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington,Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2013. From left are, Mark Pincus, founder, Chief Product Officer & Chairman, Zynga, Marissa Mayer, President and CEO, Yahoo!, and Obama.


A group of executives from leading technology companies met Tuesday with President Barack Obama, urging him to "move aggressively" to reform the National Security Agency's surveillance operations.

The tech executives released the call for reform in an email after the meeting with Obama, who is considering ways to reign in the spy program. Apple, AOL, Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Yahoo last week sent a letter urging substantial reform of NSA surveillance practices, as well as additional oversight and accountability.

The White House said Obama "made clear his belief in an open, free, and innovative internet" and that he made clear his administration will consider their views as he finalizes his review of the intelligence programs.

Obama met with executives from leading tech companies to address national security and the economic impacts of unauthorized intelligence disclosures. The White House said Obama also would discuss to discuss what the White House says is progress being made in addressing performance and capacity issues with healthCare.Gov and "how government can better deliver IT to maximize innovation, efficiency and customer service."

The CEO's statement after the meeting made no mention of the health care talks.

Those invited to meeting included Tim Cook, CEO, Apple; Dick Costolo, CEO, Twitter; Chad Dickerson, CEO, Etsy; Reed Hastings, Co-Founder & CEO, Netflix; Drew Houston, Founder & CEO, Dropbox; Marissa Mayer, President and CEO, Yahoo!; Burke Norton, Chief Legal Officer, Salesforce; Mark Pincus, Founder, Chief Product Officer & Chairman, Zynga; · Shervin Pishevar, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Sherpa Global; Brian Roberts, Chairman & CEO, Comcast; Erika Rottenberg, Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, LinkedIn; Sheryl Sandberg, COO, Facebook; Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman, Google; Brad Smith, Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Microsoft and Randall Stephenson, Chairman & CEO, AT&T.

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