Twitter Threatens Legal Action Over Meta's New Threads Application
Twitter is considering suing Meta over its new application Threads, which is linked to Instagram but works as a standalone app.
Threads, which is similar to Twitter, was launched on Wednesday, and by Thursday, more than 30 million people had signed up for the new app, according to Meta.
Meta Platforms, formerly named Facebook, is an American multinational technology company that owns and operates Facebook, Instagram, Threads, and WhatsApp, among other products and services.
Twitter’s Elon Musk said “competition is fine, cheating is not” – but Meta denied claims that former Twitter employees helped create Threads.
According to BBC News technology reporter James Clayton, the look and feel of Threads are similar to those of Twitter, adding that the news feed and the reposting were “incredibly familiar”.
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BBC reported that US copyright law does not protect ideas, so for Twitter to be successful in court it would have to prove that its own intellectual property, such as programming code, was taken.
Twitter attorney Alex Spiro sent a letter to Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Wednesday accusing Meta of “systematic, wilful, and unlawful misappropriation of Twitter’s trade secrets and other intellectual property” to create Threads.
He further alleged that Meta had hired dozens of former Twitter employees who “had and continue to have access to Twitter’s trade secrets and other highly confidential information” that helped Meta develop the Threads app. Part of the letter reads:
Twitter intends to strictly enforce its intellectual property rights, and demands that Meta take immediate steps to stop using any Twitter trade secrets or other highly confidential information.
Twitter reserves all rights, including, but not limited to, the right to seek both civil remedies and injunctive relief without further notice.
However, posting on Threads, Meta spokesperson Andy Stone said “no one on the Threads engineering team is a former Twitter employee – that’s just not a thing”.
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