In a surprise announcement, the NSA announced on Thursday that they were setting up an Instagram account, @NSAToday. The idea is the brainchild of NSA intern Roger Winter, a recent graduate of American University. Winter is a DBA (DataBase Administrator) at the NSA and an avid amateur photographer.
With the fastest growing collection of photography in the world, Winter knew that the NSA was just sitting on a treasure trove of great photography.
“We get photographs from all over the world,” said Winter, “A lot of it is from cell phones, but we also get a lot from hard drives and cloud services. I just look at this stuff every day and can’t believe the quality of some of it. Sure, some of it is crazy and outrageous, but there’s some genuinely great stuff in our database. And then one day I was working from home, looking at some of the photos and BAM! the idea to set up an Instagram account was born.”
The idea is not without precedent. The White House, along with several other federal agencies, maintain accounts on popular photo sharing site, Flickr. And the TSA and Whitehouse also have Instagram accounts. Winter tried setting up the account under the name @NSA, but that unfortunately was already taken. Undeterred, Winter chose @NSAToday. “I think @NSAToday really reflects the pace of photography and image ‘sharing’ in today’s fast-paced modern world. I plan on posting new photos daily, you know, the kind of stuff that catches my eye, and the kind of stuff that really works with a square frame. I like filters too, the grittier the better.” When asked whether or not he’ll use hashtags, Winter responded, “For sure! I’ve got a whole bunch planned that I’ll use regularly- #UhOh, #IntimateMoment, #OhNoYouDiint, #NobodysSupposedToSeeThat, and #CuteKitten. I’ve got others planned too; hopefully some will go viral and we’ll get lots of followers.”
When asked about the travails of Edward Snowden, Winter was quiet for a moment, and then responded, “Nobody thought at all about the NSA before Edward Snowden. Now look at how famous he is. I don’t want to speak to soon, but you never know…this @NSAToday may take off…”