I don't mind SXSW getting political, necessarily, but this is waaaay the wrong cause.
Edward Snowden said (in his SXSW talk) that US citizens should use encryption to protect their data... shouldn't the security systems of the USA be private too? Snowden didn't release info' that showed governmental criminal behavior (as Daniel Ellsberg did with the Pentagon Papers) he released mass-data about individual CIA agents that put their lives in danger, when they weren't even involved in the NSA actions Snowden is against.
Snowden continues to denigrate the USA while living comfortably in a totalitarian state that locks up members of the band Pussy Riot and countless others, for disagreeing with their government on policy issues and he never comes to their aid, or the aid of countless Russian dissidents who are jailed for speaking out about issues that they would be allowed to protest publicly in the USA. If Snowden did complain about the Russian totalitarian system he would be in a prison with far less justice than if he came back to the US and turned himself in.
This is a low moment for SXSW. It is an unforgivable act of pop muckraking that completely distracts from the artistic goals of the festival. Shame on SXSW.