Massacre Threat: Twitter Refuses To Cooperate With Police [Updated]

Privacy policies are generally considered to be good and important when it comes to social media platforms and how personal details are stored. Protecting one's identity is important and ought to be taken seriously... except when said individual makes public threats of mass murder.

In that case, you definitely want to know exactly who to go after. Privacy? Nuh uh. Nope. Privacy has left the building.

So it's absolutely absurd that Twitter refuses to cooperate with the New York Police Department and disclose the identity of the person behind the account that sent out a string of highly concerning tweets threatening an Aurora-style massacre at the Broadway's Longacre Theater, where former professional boxer Mike Tyson is currently starring in his own one-man show.

"Gosh I'm still making this hit list damn I wanna kill a lot of people," warned one such tweet from the account, which has since been suspended. "Mass murder for real," read another.

Law enforcement immediately reached out to Twitter for help identifying the person behind these alarming messages, but Twitter is yet to comply.

"We appreciate the timeliness and sensitivity of this matter, and have reviewed the reported Twitter account," said an email in response. "While we do invoke emergency-disclosure procedures when it appears that a threat is present, specific and immediate, this does not appear to fall under those strict parameters as per our policies."

Now, the NYPD has issued a subpoena to force the social-media platform into cooperation. In the meantime, heavily armed Hercules teams have been dispatched to the Longacre and said wannabe gunman has allegedly absconded to Florida, tweeting: "I had last minute plans and I'm in Florida rite now but it'll happen I promise. I'm just finishing up my hit list."

Let's hope Twitter wises up and starts helping out by all means possible. Or that this wasn't real to begin with––the preferable option, to be sure. [NYPost, Yahoo]

Update: The New York Times now reports that Twitter has decided to comply with the NYPD's court order and is turning over account information they had previously (three days ago) refused to disclose.



    Molly, you are a disgrace. Your attitude is disgusting. Privacy is a big deal. I'm sure you wouldn't appreciate having your privacy violated because someone misinterpreted something you posted on twitter.

    If the police want the information, there are channels for them to go through, which they did. Twitter did the right thing, so did the NYPD by getting a subpoena. I'm sure you'd be outraged if your second amendment rights were ignored, so don't get on here and encourage such unethical behaviour against other people.

      Or 4th amendment perhaps

      I wonder if you'd be so outraged if this guy wasn't caught in time because of twitter & your family were massacred by this guy...

    So "I'm about to kill someone" is misinterpreted? What would you say when the police arrest this guy and find that he had real plans to do something bad? Would you still care about "privacy"?

      "I'm about to kill someone" was followed getting killed. So who was right, the cops who said it was an emergency and they needed the info right now, or twitter who said we don't think it is, get a subpoena and we'll give it to you?

      Remarkable how willing people are to violate another's rights when it will be for their own benefit.

      and I hate to quote fiction, but , "Juror #3: I'll kill him! I'LL KILL HIM! "

    If you care about privacy you won't be tweeting this in the public in the first place.

      I agree 100% with Ron, , If you want privacy avoid social media and the internet for that fact. The internet is a public place, there is no privacy here.

    Agree with Twitter to be honest. The police can't just demand this, they have to follow the correct procedures to obtain it.

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