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Twitter threatens lawsuit

Just an hour ago a Twitter application developer was threatened with legal action from Twitter itself. The New Lawyer has the scoop.

user iconWillem Reyners Tay 12 August 2009 The Bar
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TWITTER could become a new source of lawsuits as one application developer has just an hour ago been handed a letter of notice from the major social networking site.

MyTwitterButler, an application that enables auto following of users based on keywords, is being sued by Twitter.

The legal notice received by MyTwitterButler and forwarded to The New Lawyer, focuses on two key points. Twitter claims MyTwitterButler uses "aggressive' auto-following techniques, violating the Twitter TOS.

The word Twitter is used in  the name and the url, violating the Twitter trademark, it said.

MyTwitterButler founder Dean Collins was asked to take the website off-line and transfer the domain to Twitter. Collins told Digital Media, also published by Reed Business Information, The New Lawyer's publisher, he was perplexed by the notice, which came without warning.

He has not yet sought legal advice and he has requested a conference call with Twitter to try and resolve the matter.

"I'm using the publicly available API. I have no idea what they are thinking. Are they frazzled by Russian hackers and now attacking their own developer community? I have no idea."

At this stage is unclear MyTwitterButler is not the only service that offers an auto-follow tool based on keyword searches and it is unclear at this stage if other auto-follow services have also received the legal requests notices.

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