04 Jul 2012

Most Twitter Information Requests Come from U.S., but no Takedown

The U.S. government asked Twitter to disclose information on far more users than the government of any other country, according to the first Twitter Transparency Report. The American requests included no official takedown inquiry, while the UK, France, or Greece had several such demands.

From the beginning of the year until the end of June, the social media company received 679 U.S. requests for information concerning 948 users, and granted 75 percent of them. Japan came in a distant second, with 98 requests involving 147 Twitter users.

Overall, in the first half of the year, the micro-blogging platform received more government requests than in all of 2011. Most requests were connected to criminal investigations.

“The primary goal of this report is to shed more light on: government requests received for user information, government requests received to withhold content, and DMCA takedown notices received from copyright holders,” Twitter representatives said in a blog post. “The report also provides insight into whether or not we take action on these requests.”

The Twitter report was released just a couple of weeks after Google’s biannual transparency report, which disclosed a skyrocketed number of government requests to remove content.

The micro-blogging website plans to publish an updated version of the Transparency Report twice a year.