Verizon is currently being sued over allegedly disclosing customer records to the NSA, but are defending themselves by claiming that the disclosure is free speech protected under the first amendment, according to Ars Technica.
“In fact, Verizon basically argues that the entire lawsuit is a giant SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) suit, and that the case is an attempt to deter the company from exercising its First Amendment right to turn over customer calling information to government security services.
Communicating facts to the government is protected petitioning activity,” says the response, even when the communication of those facts would normally be illegal or would violate a company’s owner promises to its customers. Verizon argues that, if the EFF and other groups have concerns about customer call records, the only proper remedy “is to impose restrictions on the government, not on the speaker’s right to communicate.”
Verizon’s lawyers are the best lawyers ever. Ask Vonage. —MEGHANN MARCO
Verizon says phone record disclosure is protected free speech [Ars Technica]