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X Corp. (Former Twitter) Sues Bright Data

Elon Musk’s pet social media network accuses the Israeli company of breaching its terms of service.

Adam Dubois

X Corp., which until recently was known as Twitter, has filed a lawsuit in California against Bright Data, the Israeli provider of data extraction tools and services.

The social media network has accused Bright Data of “illegally” scraping and selling millions of records from the platform. According to X Corp., Bright Data offered data services, as well as a tool for extracting data en masse.

Twitter’s successor bases the complaint on alleged breaches of terms of service. Bright Data had an account on the platform, so did its top executives and other employees. As such, X Corp. claims that the Israeli company violated a binding contract that prohibited web scraping without prior consent.

X Corp. aims to receive damages, prevent the defendant from further scraping the platform, and make it disclose who received the data extracted from Twitter.

This isn’t Bright Data’s first clash against social media platforms. In January 2023, the company filed and received a lawsuit from Meta, the owner of Facebook and Instagram. Both then and now, the arguments revolve around terms of service violations, which seem to have replaced the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act as the main battlefield.

Social media platforms, including Microsoft’s LinkedIn, have been among the most aggressive opponents of web scraping. According to Bright Data CEO Or Lenchner’s statement to Bloomberg Law, this new lawsuit “is an effort to build a wall around publicly available data on Twitter”. Similar things can be said about the many other related disputes that have taken place over these past few years.

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