Why has Twitter just sued the US government? (Hint: spying)

The US government is in court, thanks to Twitter.

The social media giant has sued the US government over violations to the right to free speech.

Twitter has called on the government to be more transparent about personal data requests.

Back in April, the US government received a Transparency Report from Twitter which contained information about its users.

However, government officials refused Twitter’s requests to make information of those requests public.

Under the First Amendment to the US constitution, Twitter cannot reveal information about requests made by the US government for accessing user data.

In a blog post, Twitter’s lawyer Ben Lee wrote: “It’s our belief that we are entitled under the First Amendment to respond to our users’ concerns and to the statements of US government officials by providing information about the scope of US government surveillance.”

Meanwhile, the American Civil Liberties Union deputy legal director, Jameel Jaffer, released a statement that read: “We hope that other technology companies will now follow Twitter’s lead. Technology companies have an obligation to protect their customers’ sensitive information against overbroad government surveillance, and to be candid with their customers about how their information is being used and shared.”

Other tech companies to have protested against the government’s request to access private data include Microsoft, Google and Facebook.

Social Bookmarks