NEW YORK—PEN is shocked by the U.S. government’s heavy-handed efforts to force Yahoo to turn over its user communications. The threat of a $250,000 per day fine, and the fact that Yahoo was forced to keep its efforts to challenge the government’s demands secret for years after the fact, demonstrates the pressing need for surveillance reform. A democratic government cannot be allowed to operate in the dark, suppressing all information about its activities under threat of crippling fines and legal sanctions. The public has a right to information about the scope of the U.S. government’s surveillance powers.

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Founded in 1922, PEN American Center is an association of 3,500 writers working to bring down barriers to free expression worldwide.

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Katy Glenn Bass, kglennbass@pen.org, (212) 334.1660 x 109
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