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Train passenger live tweets ex-NSA director's off-the-record phone conversation


  1. One would think that of all people, the former National Security Agency and CIA director Michael Hayden would know that any conversation can be monitored.

    If he didn't before, he surely does now thanks to a fellow passenger live-tweeting his private telephone conversation during a recent train ride.

    Tom Matzzie, an entrepreneur who used to run the D.C. branch of Political Action, happened to be seated in front of Hayden on the Amtrak Acela 2170, which left Washington at 3 p.m Thursday.

    When he realized that the man behind him was Hayden having an off-the-record conversation with a journalist about the NSA and Obama administration, Mattzie took to Twitter to give his followers a play-by-play.
  2. Matzzie's tweets were detailed and prolific, but as attention mounted around his tweets, he grew nervous that Hayden would be tipped off to what was going on.
  3. New York Magazine reports that after about 15 minutes, Hayden's office called to tell him what had happened. 

    Being a good sport, the ex-NSA chief went over to Matzzie for the photo he requested on Twitter.
  4. “I cannot recall a single disparaging comment I made about the administration,” said Hayden to the New York Times when asked about Matzzie's tweets. “I wasn’t saying anything sensitive or classified. These were just routine conversations. I can’t believe you guys are making such a big deal out of this.”

    But making a big deal about it, many are.

    Matzzie's Twitter follower count has nearly doubled following the train ride, from about 3,000 to nearly 6,000. His actions have made international news headlines, and many are still talking about the live-tweeted conversation today.
  5. Matzzie continues to answer questions about his experience with Hayden on Twitter.