Twitter has filed a lawsuits in France San Francisco Federal court against a non-profit organisation whose research criticised the platform.
The firm that owns Twitter, now called X, is suing an anti-hate organisation whose research criticised the platform.
The Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH), which has offices in the US and the UK, has been charged by X Corp with engaging in “unlawful acts” in order to “improperly gain access” to its data.
Elon Musk, the owner of X Corp, was accused by CCDH of attempting to stifle any critics.
CCDH is a non-profit organisation that researches and campaigns against online hate.
Its reports have been widely cited in the press.
“Elon Musk’s latest legal threat is straight out of the authoritarian playbook – he is now showing he will stop at nothing to silence anyone who criticizes him,” said Imran Ahmed, chief executive of CCDH, in a statement.
CCDH research had shown that hate and disinformation was “spreading like wildfire on the platform under Musk’s ownership”, Mr Ahmed claimed.
He accused the X Corp boss of attempting to “shoot the messenger”.
News of the legal case, filed on Monday, emerged shortly after a fiery exchange of legal letters – the first, threatening legal action – from X Corp lawyer Alex Spiro was followed by a forthright response from CCDH’s US lawyer Roberta Kaplan.
Responding to the legal letter from X Corp, Ian Russell, father of Molly Russell, who serves as a CCDH UK board member, asserted Elon Musk’s legal action amounted to an “unprecedented attack on civil society”.