Twitter has dropped its lawsuit against the US government a day after it was filed claiming the government was trying to curtail free speech. The lawsuit was dropped after the order forcing it to unmask the anonymous user behind the anti-Trump account was withdrawn.
The lawsuit cited the following, “The rights of free speech afforded Twitter’s users and Twitter itself under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution include a right to disseminate such anonymous or pseudonymous political speech,”[http://tmsnrt.rs/2p6CnXp]
The controversial account @ALT_uscis with over 120,000 followers targets President Trump’s Immigration policies deemed racist by proponents of open borders and uncontrolled immigration. It also targets almost all of his policies or anything The President does.
Most controversial about the account is its origination, the “alt” which is one of many anon accounts believed to be used by government agencies wishing to criticize or disparage the President and his policies incognito. It is widely believed that certain individuals within the immigration agency, that is, US Citizenship and Immigration Services are behind the tweets.
With many Obama Admin hold-overs still embedded deep within government agencies and hiding their identities, this could explain why the case would be dropped for fear that it could have led to the unmasking of more than one individual.
On Thursday after the government ordered the unmasking of the user’s IP address and phone number, Twitter decided to sue. It went after the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and US Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) to both contest and block the order claiming it would violate free speech.
However, in an unexplained move on Friday, lawyers for Twitter dropped the case in written Court documents stating that summons had been withdrawn and the demand “no longer had any force or effect.”
The lawsuit which was filed in California was backed by the controversial ACLU a Liberal arm and strong supporter of Obama. The organization is known for actively opposition and fighting the Trump Administration in almost everything it does since assuming office.
The @ALT_uscis account set up in January just as the Trump Admin took office has it’s almost 9,000 tweets attacking either Mr. Trump The Person, Trump The President, his Administration as well as his policies. Even the platform’s CEO Jack Dorsey is one of its many high profile followers.
It is important to note that this is not the first time a presidential administration has sought access to the valuable digital information held by social media companies like Twitter, Facebook, Google and other related internet companies. Such requests regardless of their nature are often criticized as government overreach keen on curtailing with free speech.
Unlike Facebook which requires users to prove their identity, Twitter does not. It is this veil of anonymity that has been criticized for encouraging trolls to thrive on the platform anonymously.
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