View Full Version : Legal question - who legally owns Twitter messages?

July 9th, 2009, 02:46 PM
I have been making a Java program which downloads a Twitter page every 30 seconds and extracts the most recent Twitter message from the HTML, it then compares this with the previously downloaded message and if the recently downloaded message is new, my program alerts the user by making an alarm sound and showing a Popup containing the new message.

I know that it would not be legal for me to use Twitter owned content in my program without their permission, but who legally owns Twitter messages on the Twitter website? - Twitter, or the people who write the messages?

July 9th, 2009, 02:52 PM
Don't quote me on it, but I would think it would still be the person who wrote the message.

Just because I hand in an assignment to my teacher at school doesn't mean its no longer my own work, same principle applies. Just because I post a message on twitter and they host that message, doesn't mean its not still my message.

July 9th, 2009, 02:55 PM
What you are doing don't look really different from all these Twitter clients out there. They have an API (http://apiwiki.twitter.com/) for these applications.

If you are really worried about the legal issues, you should read the terms of service (https://twitter.com/tos).

July 9th, 2009, 03:49 PM
The person who wrote the message owns and is 100% responsible for the message's content and the reactions it may bring.

July 9th, 2009, 06:40 PM
Thanks for the help, I will now finish my program and make it freely downloadable, after I have checked the terms of service.

July 9th, 2009, 09:28 PM
pimp your library