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Twitter Surrenders Tweets Of Occupy Wall Street Protestor
Malcolm Harris can never say Twitter didn’t try but after months of legal pressure, the micro-blogging giant has succumbed to immense pressure and finally agree to hand over the tweets he posted in 2011.
Harris troubles started when he was arrested back in October of 2011 and charged with disorderly conduct. He was participating in an (Occupy Wall Street ) #OWS on the Brooklyn Bridge. The Manhattan DA sent a subpoena to Twitter after Harris plead not guilty to the charge of obstructing traffic and charged that the police had lured protestor to the Bridge intentionally in order to effect the arrest.
Twitter informed Harris who filed a motion to have the subpoena quashed. For several months both Twitter and Harris were able to successfully fend of the prying hands of the DA. All that changed in July when a New York criminal court ruled that Twitter had to surrender the tweets.
According to the judgment, “If you post a tweet, just like if you scream it out the window, there is no reasonable expectation of privacy. There is no proprietary interest in your tweets, which you have now gifted to the world.”
In the end the courts decided that neither Twitter nor Malcolm Harris had protection under the 4th Amendment and so Twitter had no choice but to hand over the tweets. As for Harris, well his case will no doubt be successfully prosecuted. His case shows if nothing else that our activities on social media sites can will be used in the court of law, so we all should be careful of what we say.
Do you think Malcolm Harris should have his tweets protected under the 4th Amendment? Share your thoughts below.