A judge has ruled that Twitter must reveal the identity of the man who threatened to rape Minnesota Congresswoman and former Presidential candidate Michele Bachmann using the microblogging service on the grounds that legally, saying you're going to sexually assault a Presidential candidate on an internet forum isn't protected speech, even if you very strongly dislike them. Trending topics in this man's life include #ohshit and #attorneyplz.
The problems started when the user, known thus far as "Mr. X," threatened sexual violence against Bachmann using a "Vietnam-era machete." Federal Judge Royce Lamberth ruled that talk like that isn't guaranteed by the Constitution, especially when accompanied by some of the other turd nuggets this user presented to the world. In the words of Royce, "Mr. X's body of tweets is extremely crude and in almost incomprehensibly poor taste."
And so one person's cheeky South Park tagline is another's damning legal judgment.
Judge Royce clarified that he didn't believe that Mr. X was a threat, but that investigators needed the authority to examine possible threats against Presidential candidates in order to ensure the integrity of the electoral proces both now and in the future. Mr. X hasn't been charged with anything yet, but his life's likely to get 1000% more Secret Service-y.
This man deserves a prize for reminding America that no matter how whackadoodle we find our politicians, there will always be someone willing to out-nut them. And often, that person is on the internet.
Twitter must ID user who threatened Michele Bachmann [Mashable]