California court partly dismissed Twitter lawsuit over US information requests
May 04, 2016 03:08 AM EDT
A California court handed Twitter a setback after it partially dismissed the social media company's lawsuit over U.S. government's surveillance requests. The judge also denied Twitter's First Amendment violation argument, although gave it time to amend the complaint.
According to Reuters, a U.S. judge on Monday partly dismissed a court case filed by Twitter Inc. The social media company argued that it should be permitted to publicly disclose more details about requests for information it receives from the U.S. government.
U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzales Rogers in Oakland, California also gave the social media company the opportunity to re-file its lawsuit. Rogers permitted Twitter to include more details about the government decision-making so that it could try to move its claims forward.
"The Court agrees with the Government that Twitter has not alleged that the information is not properly classified by the Government," US District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers of Oakland, California stated. Rogers also added, "In the absence of a challenge to the decisions classifying that information, Twitter's Constitutional challenges simply do not allege viable claims."
RT reported that Rogers has adenied Twitter's motion, challenging the application of the Espionage Act. Twitter claimed that the U.S. government has stated that if the social network would unveil the cumulative number of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act orders it received, or related information; it would face a trial under the Espionage Act. But the U.S. government disputed that the social media company has no basis to sue the government over the accusations.
Twitter and other Silicon Valley tech companies usually release transparency reports that explain their role in the government surveillance. However, the social media company wants to be able to say more.
In 2014, a blog post after the lawsuit was filed, as claimed by CNET. The company wrote in the post, "It's our belief that we are entitled under the First Amendment to respond to our users' concerns and to the statements of U.S. government officials by providing information about the scope of U.S. government surveillance -- including what types of legal process have not been received. We should be free to do this in a meaningful way, rather than in broad, inexact ranges."
Meanwhile, neither Twitter nor Judge Rogers immediately returned requests for comment. Nonetheless, the company is given until May 24 to re-file the lawsuit, while the U.S. government is commanded to review the amended complaint within 21 days.