Snowden Vs. Dunham At South By Southwest

AUSTIN, TEX — “Girls” star Lena Dunham and NSA leaker Edward Snowden are both speaking at the South By Southwest Interactive conference today. At the same time.

This morning, the SXSW coordinators sent out an email warning attendees of long lines for the Snowden event, which will take place in a hall at the Austin Convention Center that seats approximately 5,000 people. There are several spillover rooms where the talk will be streamed too. (Snowden will be video conferencing in.)

But the coordinators didn’t anticipate the crowds for Dunham’s talk, which takes place in just one hall. Both events begin at 11 a.m. local time, but there’s almost no line for the Snowden talk.

Here’s the Snowden line about 20 minutes before the event. We saw maybe a dozen people waiting to get in.

And here’s the line for Dunham’s talk, which stretches outside the convention center.

It keeps going…

And going around the side of the building…

And going…until you reach the end, which is on the opposite side of the convention center.

The main room for Snowden’s talk was mostly full, but people weren’t exactly dying to get in like they were for Dunham’s keynote. We overheard SXSW coordinators telling people not to cut the Dunham line.

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