Samizdata - 2:19 pm on May 29, 2011 (gmt 0)
Twitter has been forced to hand over the personal details of a British user in a libel battle that could have huge implications for free speech on the web.
The social network has passed the name, email address and telephone number of a south Tyneside councillor accused of libelling the local authority via a series of anonymous Twitter accounts. South Tyneside council took the legal fight to the superior court of California, which ordered Twitter, based in San Francisco, to hand over the user's private details.
It is believed to be the first time Twitter has bowed to legal pressure to identify anonymous users and comes amid a huge row over privacy and free speech online.