Twitter Drops Lawsuit Against Homeland Security After They Stop Demanding Identities of Anti-Trump Accounts
Who knew Twitter was suing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security?! Apparently they were, but the lawsuit has now been dropped.
It all started when the lawsuit was filed Thursday, April 6, in the Northern District of California’s federal court, alleging the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly and CBP acting commissioner Kevin McAleenan demanded in mid-March that Twitter reveal to them the identity of the person or people behind the account @ALT_USCIS.
The abbreviation USCIS is for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service. They have an official Twitter account @USCIS. However, the @ALT_USCIS account, which became known in January, tweets out criticism of the Trump administration.
Since President Trump was inaugurated, alternative Twitter accounts have been set up by government workers who are using them to release information and criticize government agencies.
Twitter had no comment on their lawsuit, and the Department of Homeland Security referred to their policy and ho comment as well.
A day later, Friday, April 7, Twitter’s lawsuit had been dropped once the government stopped its demands.
Emma Llanso, director of free expression at the Center for Democracy & Technology, a non-profit that promotes an open and free Internet, spoke to USA Today about Twitter’s lawsuit, saying, “The right of people to speak anonymously is a “core” tenet of Americans’ right to free speech — whether in opposition to the government or an employer.”
Twitter has been accused many times of not protecting its users from abuse, so the company filing a lawsuit to protect their users might be a step in the right direction.