Widow sues Twitter over ISIS' 'unfettered ability' to use platform

Citing ISIS’ "unfettered ability to maintain official Twitter accounts," the widow of an American killed last year in an attack at a police training center in Jordan sued the struggling social media company for allowing the group to spread its message.

Reuters reported Thursday that Tamara Fields, the widow of Lloyd Carl Fields Jr., claims in the complaint that the “explosive growth of ISIS” would not have been possible without its access to Twitter. The lawsuit seeks monetary damages and may expose the company to a precedent-setting ruling under the United States' Anti-Terrorism Act.

The ruling could make “Twitter accountable not only to governments looking to contain terrorist speech online, but also liable to families affected by that activity. It would also, no doubt, have implications far beyond Twitter, putting tech companies across Silicon Valley on warning.”

The San Francisco-based company called the lawsuit meritless, but said it was “deeply saddened to hear of this family’s terrible loss.”

“Violent threats and promotion of terrorism deserve no place on Twitter and, like other social networks, our rules make that clear.

In November of last year, there was a shooting rampage at a police training center that killed five people, including two American instructors. The two instructors were both from Florida and identified as Lloyd Carl Fields Jr., of Cape Coral, and James Damon Creach, of Tampa.

Wired reported that a month prior to the lawsuit, Twitter was fined by the Turkish government $50,000 for refusing to remove what was considered “terrorist propaganda.”'s Edmund DeMarche contributed to this report