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Twitter Threatens To Sue Nonprofit Watchdog Group After Hate Speech Study

Elon Musk has called himself a free-speech absolutist. But now Twitter has threatened to sue a nonprofit known for sharply criticizing the platform for its handling of hate speech and misinformation. In a July 20 letter shared publicly, Twitter threatened to sue the Center for Countering Digital Hate, accusing the group of a campaign to hurt Twitter by driving away its advertisers. The CCDH has published numerous reports about various social media companies’ approaches to everything from vaccine misinformation to online racism and antisemitism. The letter by Alex Spiro, an outside attorney representing Twitter owner Musk, alleges that CCDH has made inflammatory, outrageous, and false or misleading assertions about Twitter and its operations, which he argued lack scientific rigor. Spiro wrote to CCDH CEO Imran Ahmed that the article leaves no doubt that CCDH intends to harm Twitter’s business by driving advertisers away from the platform. Spiro also said that the company is investigating whether it can sue the nonprofit for making false descriptions of the company. CCDH tweeted Spiro’s July 20 letter and called the legal threat “ridiculous.” Threatening lawsuits has become a favored tactic for Musk as Twitter faces continued pressure. Earlier this month, Twitter threatened to sue Facebook-parent Meta over the launch of its competing app, Threads.

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