Snowden film Citizenfour picks up Oscar for best documentary

Citizenfour, Laura Poitras’s extraordinary depiction of the start of Edward Snowden’s NSA surveillance leaking extravaganza, has won the Academy Award for best documentary.

The film shows how Snowden got in touch with the activist film-maker using the titular pseudonym, and the Hong Kong interviews with Glenn Greenwald and Ewen MacAskill in which he started detailing what he knew from his time working at the NSA.

As a rare combination of rights activism, historical record and technological explainer, it is quite unlike any other documentary I have seen (I was lucky enough to catch it at its first showing in Berlin, where it had been edited – Poitras understandably wanted some distance between that process and U.S. intelligence services.)

In her acceptance speech on Sunday night, Poitras said Snowden’s disclosures “don’t only expose a threat to our privacy but to our democracy itself. When the decisions that rule us are taken in secret we lose the power to control and govern ourselves.”

Greenwald, who led the reporting on the leaks for the Guardian, joined Poitras on stage. Snowden was of course not there, still being holed up in Russia, but he was represented by his girlfriend, Lindsay Mills, who also briefly featured in the film. In a statement, Snowden said: “When Laura Poitras asked me if she could film our encounters, I was extremely reluctant. I’m grateful that I allowed her to persuade me.”

Where to watch the Oscars live online

This Sunday, ABC is going to live stream the Oscars for the first time in the history of the awards. However, only a subset of TV viewers will have access to the show online.

Forget the People’s Choice Awards, we’ve got Twitter

Who needs an awards show to tell us which movies and actors fans prefer when we have Twitter? IBM is turning its skills in social-media sentiment analysis to Hollywood awards so the world can see which movies and stars are generating the most buzz on Twitter.

Auto-Tune the News Rocks the Oscars

An auto-tuned mash-up featuring Harry Potter‘s Ron Weasley, Toy Story, The Social Network’sSean Parker and Twilight’s Edward, Jacob and Bella was the highlight of the 83rd Oscars. The video was produced by none other than the Gregory Brothers of Auto-Tune The News fame.

Where to Watch the Oscars Online and on iOS Devices

The ceremony for the 83rd annual Academy Awards is only officially being broadcast on ABC, but online there are plenty of options for getting a taste of the fun, including live-streamed red carpet coverage and premium apps for iOS devices that take you backstage.

Oscar Monetizes the Two-Screen Experience, But Is It Too Soon?

ABC and the Academy are going all out with a two-screen video experience for this year’s Oscars to accompany the telecast. But they’re also charging for it — a concept which runs counterintuitive to the reason for creating the two-screen experience in the first place.

Where to Watch the 2011 Oscar Nominations Online

Tuesday morning at 8:30 AM ET/5:30 AM PT, the Academy Awards will be announcing its nominees for the 83rd annual round of Oscars. But if you can’t use your TV to watch the names get read, don’t worry — there are a number of online options.