Twitter: US backs down on seeking anti-Trump user records

FILE - This Oct. 26, 2016, print shows a pointer during Twitter domicile in San Francisco. Twitter says a U.S. supervision has corroborated down on a ask for annals that could brand users behind an criticism against to President Donald Trump. Twitter is disclosing a growth Friday, Apr 7, 2017 as it withdraws a sovereign lawsuit severe a governments request. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

— The U.S. supervision has forsaken a ask for Twitter to furnish annals that could brand users behind an criticism against to President Donald Trump, a association pronounced Friday.

As a result, Twitter is withdrawing a sovereign lawsuit that challenged a government’s request. On Thursday, Twitter charged that efforts by a supervision to “unmask” a people behind a criticism disregarded a First Amendment.

“The speed with that a supervision buckled shows only how blatantly unconstitutional a direct was in a initial place,” American Civil Liberties Union profession Esha Bhandari pronounced in a statement. Bhandari represents a unclear chairman or people behind a Twitter account.


The criticism in doubt is @ALT_uscis, a anxiety to a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office. In a dual months of a existence, a criticism has been vicious of a Trump administration’s immigration policies. The criticism described a users to The Associated Press in Feb as employees and former employees of a agency.

The criticism is one of dozens of brute Twitter accounts that have sprung adult given Trump took office, purporting to paint stream or former sovereign employees during several agencies who conflict a administration’s policies. Other such “alternative” — or “alt” — accounts embody @Alt_CDC for a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and @AltUSEPA for a Environmental Protection Agency.

The Department of Homeland Security, that oversees a immigration group and was named as a suspect in Twitter’s lawsuit, didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.


In an interview, Bhandari pronounced a rights of unknown speakers were during risk if a supervision could direct information on their identities though any authorised justification. She remarkable that a government’s summons to Twitter had boilerplate denunciation though lacked a specific reason for wanting to know a identities.

She pronounced she hoped a quick withdrawal would deter other sovereign agencies that competence aim users of identical “alt” accounts.

“It unequivocally shows what a high customary a supervision has to meet,” she said.

In a lawsuit, Twitter claimed a supervision can't enforce a association to divulge users’ identities though initial assembly several tests. It contingency infer that a rapist or polite offense has been committed, that it’s not seeking for information with a vigilant of suppressing giveaway speech, and that a interests of a review transcend a First Amendment rights of Twitter and a users, Twitter said.

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