In a bit of a scary legal ruling, Twitter was ordered to turn over an Occupy protester's tweets even though their Terms of Service state that tweets remain the property of the users. Theoretically, this would mean that the defendant is required to turn them over and be issued the subpoena for them, but a judge ruled that Twitter had to.
Twitter fought back, citing their Terms of Service for why they shouldn't be required to turn the tweets over, but the judge ruled against them. Twitter was given until today to hand over the tweets, or Manhattan Criminal Court Judge Matthew Sciarrino was going to require Twitter provide financial statements for the last two quarters so that he may assess a fine.
Twitter has apparently caved and given the requested tweets to the court. They will, however, stay sealed until an appeal can be heard. Twitter was joined by the Electronic Frontier Foundation and ACLU in fighting the request for the tweets. This ruling could have wide-reaching implications if the appeal is ruled in favor of the government.
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