Twitter Fights Jan.6 Panel Demand For Internal Messages

Twitter Inc TWTR is reportedly pushing back against demands from a committee probing the Jan. 6 Capitol riots to hand over its internal communications about moderation on its platform.

What Happened: According to a Rolling Stone report, the social media giant is asserting the First Amendment to fight the committee’s requests for internal communications about moderating tweets during the Capitol insurrection that happened during former President Donald Trump‘s administration.

Those requests include internal exchanges on Slack, Salesforce Inc’s CRM business messaging application, the report said, citing people familiar with the matter.

As per Rolling Stone, Twitter said it had an “ongoing, productive engagement” with the Select Committee and provided “appropriate, relevant” information to its investigation.

Earlier this year, the committee sent a subpoena along with a letter to Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal. The panel’s chair, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), demanded three categories of documents including “internal company analyses of misinformation, disinformation, and malinformation relating to the 2020 Election.”

Thompson found fault with Twitter as it did not turn over material related to the platform’s decision to suspend Trump two days before the insurrection, reported RollingStone.

Last month, Tesla Inc TSLA CEO Elon Musk, who is attempting to take over Twitter, said he would reverse Trump’s permanent ban once the deal is closed.

See Also: How To Buy Twitter (TWTR) Shares

Why It Matters: The committee’s members are reportedly unhappy with Twitter’s pushback and believe its internal communications would help understand how extremism contributed to the violence on Capitol Hill.

There is no clarity if the panel conducting the probe will press Twitter further on internal communication, according to RollingStone.

The committee reportedly also requested data from 15 other social media companies including Google-parent Alphabet Inc GOOGL GOOG and Facebook’s parent Meta Platforms Inc FB in January.

Price Action: On Tuesday, Twitter shares rose 1.5% to $40.14 in the regular session and fell 0.2% in the after-hours trading, according to data from Benzinga Pro.

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Shivdeep Dhaliwal

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