A British Museum Is Displaying the Guardian’s Smashed Snowden Laptop

But is it art?

|
Apr 3 2015, 4:53pm

If Citizenfour wasn't enough to satisfy your Edward Snowden curiosity, there's now a museum exhibit.

The Victoria & Albert Museum in London is displaying the MacBook Air destroyed by Guardian employees in 2013 as an attempt to block British officials from investigating it because it contained leaked secrets from the NSA whistleblower.

There's nothing too exciting seeing a Macbook Air that looks like it's more suited for the Genius Bar, but it's part of an interesting exhibit chillingly titled "All of This Belongs To You." It focuses on "the contradiction between our concern for online privacy and our obsession with sharing via social media."

Corinna Gardner, a curator working on the exhibit, told The Register "the destroyed MacBook Air enables us to focus on often difficult-to-grasp questions about who owns our digital data and the right to privacy around material fact."

In what is the most the Guardian thing ever, the newspaper asked curators about the laptop's significance. One person commented that the Apple's infamous sleek designs is "crucial for any art historian of the future seeking to understand our era."

They add that it's "interesting act of iconoclasm tied up in the totally symbolic destruction of Snowden's laptop, when the contents were known to be duplicated elsewhere."

But perhaps what's most interesting is that this happened just two years ago, and we're already memorializing it like it occurred two decades ago.