Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) has been taking a stand against ISIS, and the militants behind the organization don’t like it. The micro-blogging platform has been shutting down accounts used by ISIS to distribute news, so now the organization is making death threats against Twitter employees.
ISIS calls for assassinations
The New York Post reports that after they started to suspend ISIS accounts, some militants started tweeting that Twitter workers and management should be assassinated. The militant group had been actively using the micro-blogging platform to circulate its messages, including the video of the beheading of American journalist James Foley, which it posted on YouTube.
Twitter has long prided itself on being a network of free speech, but Costolo said they have been trying to balance free speech with broader issues.
Twitter used for good… and evil
Costolo said most Twitter users use it for good things, noting that it has been an instrument for spurring social changes in several countries all over the world. However, he added that many people will use it for evil purposes, which he said is against their terms of service.
In fact, the executive said that it’s illegal in many of the countries where they operate for militants to use Twitter to promote their activities.
Twitter’s great balancing act
Before Twitter held its initial public offering, Costolo said he was asked about balancing users’ rights, freedom of speech and the company’s business needs. He said that most of a time, there isn’t a debate about Twitter’s needs as a business and the needs of a particular user group. He said that most of the time, it’s a debate about a particular type of speech from two different perspectives.
This week Twitter showed just how serious it is about free speech by filing a lawsuit against the National Security Agency, the FBI and the Justice Department. The micro-blogging company alleges that the U.S. government’s restrictions on what it can reveal about user data requests related to national security violate its First Amendment rights of freedom of speech.