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Law & Order Discuss Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account at the Political Forums; Twitter Inc on Thursday filed a federal lawsuit to block an order by the U.S. government demanding that it reveal ...

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Old 04-06-2017, 11:23 PM
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Post Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account

Quote:
Twitter Inc on Thursday filed a federal lawsuit to block an order by the U.S. government demanding that it reveal who is behind an account opposed to President Donald Trump's tough immigration policies.

Twitter cited freedom of speech as a basis for not turning over records about the account, @ALT_uscis. The account is claimed to be the work of at least one federal immigration employee, according to the lawsuit filed in San Francisco federal court.

The acronym U.S. CIS refers to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and the account describes itself as "immigration resistance." Trump has vowed to build a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico and has promised to deport millions of illegal immigrants.

Following Trump's inauguration in January, anonymous Twitter feeds that borrowed the names and logos of more than a dozen U.S. government agencies appeared to challenge the president's views on climate change and other issues. They called themselves "alt" accounts.

Twitter spokesman Nick Pacilio declined to comment on whether the government had demanded information about other accounts critical of Trump.

Twitter, which counts Trump among its active users, has a record of litigating in favor of user privacy.

"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," Twitter said in the lawsuit. (tmsnrt.rs/2p6CnXp)

The Department of Homeland Security, which is a defendant in the lawsuit, declined to comment on pending litigation. The Justice Department, which typically represents federal agencies in court, and the White House had no immediate comment.

Senator Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, said in a statement it was a waste of resources to try to uncover an anonymous critic, and he called on the Homeland Security inspector general to investigate who directed the "witch hunt."

Esha Bhandari, a staff attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union, which is representing the Twitter user, said the government's request was highly unusual. Requests for social media account information from the U.S. government typically involve national security or criminal charges, she said.

"We have seen no reason the government has given for seeking to unmask this speaker's identity," Bhandari said, adding that the right to anonymous speech against the government is "a bedrock American value" strongly protected under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

....

A copy of the summons filed with the lawsuit says the records are needed for an investigation to ensure compliance with duties, taxes and fines and other customs and immigration matters.

It was not immediately clear how the anonymous account fit into those laws and regulations, and Twitter said the summons was an abuse of a law meant to be used to investigate imported merchandise.

Twitter might have a strong case that the summons was improper, said Paul Alan Levy, staff attorney at Public Citizen Litigation Group who specializes in online privacy and free speech issues.

"I don't think there is any way for the government to come out of this looking good," Levy said.

There is no indication that the White House was aware of the summons, which was signed by a Florida-based supervisor who works in an office that investigates employee corruption, misconduct and mismanagement. The supervisor could not be reached for comment.
Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account | Reuters

This sounds like it lacks a legitimate purpose...
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Old 04-06-2017, 11:25 PM
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Default Re: Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account

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Old 04-07-2017, 07:11 AM
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Angry Re: Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account

Granny says, "Dat's right...

... dey's a buncha anti-American...

... socialists an' traitors."
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Old 04-07-2017, 10:05 AM
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Default Re: Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account

It is not about freedom of speech.

From the OP.

Quote:
Following Trump's inauguration in January, anonymous Twitter feeds that borrowed the names and logos of more than a dozen U.S. government agencies appeared to challenge the president's views on climate change and other issues. They called themselves "alt" accounts.
It is about masquerading as government agencies and potentially violating the Hatch act if the content is written by Federal employees.

It is anti Trump propaganda so it is OK no matter the laws it violates.
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Old 04-07-2017, 10:25 AM
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Post Re: Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account

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Originally Posted by AZRWinger View Post
It is not about freedom of speech.
It's relevant as per how the intent of the lawsuit is obviously to impact freedom of speech.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AZRWinger View Post
It is about masquerading as government agencies and potentially violating the Hatch act if the content is written by Federal employees.
"masquerading as government agencies"...

I don't see anybody confused as to whether these accounts are "government agencies".

And you really need to document your claim that it supposedly violates the Hatch Act...
The 1939 Act forbids the intimidation or bribery of voters and restricts political campaign activities by federal employees. It prohibits using any public funds designated for relief or public works for electoral purposes. It forbids officials paid with federal funds from using promises of jobs, promotion, financial assistance, contracts, or any other benefit to coerce campaign contributions or political support. It provides that persons below the policy-making level in the executive branch of the federal government must not only refrain from political practices that would be illegal for any citizen, but must abstain from "any active part" in political campaigns, using this language to specify those who are exempt:[6]
(i) an employee paid from an appropriation for the Executive Office of the President; or
(ii) an employee appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, whose position is located within the United States, who determines policies to be pursued by the United States in the nationwide administration of Federal laws.
The act also precludes federal employees from membership in "any political organization which advocates the overthrow of our constitutional form of government,"[7] a provision meant to prohibit membership in organizations on the far left and far right, such as the German-American Bund and the Communist Party USA.[8]

An amendment on July 19, 1940 extended the Act to certain employees of state and local governments whose positions are primarily paid for by federal funds. It has been interpreted to bar political activity on the part of employees of state agencies administering federal unemployment insurance programs and appointed local law enforcement agency officials with oversight of federal grant funds. The Hatch Act bars state and local government employees from running for public office if any federal funds support the position, even if the position is funded almost entirely with local funds.[9]

The Merit Systems Protection Board and its Office of Special Counsel are responsible for enforcement of the Hatch Act.[10]
One of the ways it's easily recognizable your claim is b.s. is the approach the government is taking.
They aren't demanding the accounts be stricken or renamed. That is the logical approach if this was a violation as you claim.
They're asking for the owners to be unmasked. Which should tell people a LOT about the real intents.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AZRWinger View Post
It is anti Trump propaganda so it is OK no matter the laws it violates.
The article clearly addresses the specious and b.s. claims as to legal violations.
"anti Trump" has nothing to do with my position. I suspect it has everything to do with yours.
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Old 04-07-2017, 02:26 PM
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Default Re: Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account

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Originally Posted by foundit66 View Post
"anti Trump" has nothing to do with my position. I suspect it has everything to do with yours.
And I'd call you a friggin liar.
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Old 04-07-2017, 03:00 PM
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Default Re: Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account

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Originally Posted by MrLiberty View Post
And I'd call you a friggin liar.
You calling people names. And ignoring the actual topic of the thread.
Doesn't take Kreskin to predict that...

Back to the topic, do you support the government's effort to demand Twitter reveal the owners of those accounts?
If yes, on what grounds does the government have the right to force a corporation to unveil it's authorized users?
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Old 04-25-2017, 11:48 AM
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Default Re: Twitter refuses U.S. order to reveal user behind anti-Trump account

And the plot thickens...
Inspector General John Roth informed Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) in a letter Friday that his office is conducting a probe to determine whether behavior by federal officials concerning the Twitter account was “improper in any way” or if there was an “abuse of authority.”

....
Wyden, who called the action against Twitter a “witch hunt,” complained in a letter to the CBP commissioner that he was concerned the summons represented a “disturbing threat to free speech and whistleblower protections” — and he called for an investigation.

Roth, who received a copy of Wyden’s letter, wrote to the senator that DHS had determined, at CBP’s request, that no classified information was released via the @ALT_uscis Twitter account. Roth said his own office was unaware of the effort to unmask the identity of the Twitter account holder until officials read about it in the media.

“We strive to ensure that our work does not have a chilling effect on individuals’ free speech rights,” wrote Roth, who emphasized that his office “is not ... and will not investigate, any alleged misconduct on the part of the @ALT_uscis account owner relating to his or her use of the Twitter account.”

His office is, however, investigating whether CBP’s conduct concerning the Twitter account was “improper in any way, including whether CBP abused its authority in issuing the .... summons to Twitter.” Roth added that his office is “also reviewing potential broader misuse of summons authority.”
Federal 'Witch Hunt' Against Trump Twitter Critic Sparks Investigation
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