Twitter on Friday became an official member of Washington’s influence economy, with the formation of a political action committee and the appointment of its first registered lobbyist.
The seven-year-old privately held company said it wants to put a bigger priority on its interaction with members of Congress as they grapple with major policy and political issues related to free speech on the Internet, government surveillance of communications, and copyright and patent law reform.
The company said its PAC, to be named Twitter#PAC, and an in-house lobbyist will help it campaign for its policy objectives in Washington. The PAC will allow the firm to pool donations for its causes.
“We expect to continue to play an active role in speaking up on issues related to Internet freedom, government access to user data, patent reform and freedom of expression,” Twitter spokesman Jim Prosser said in a statement.
The firm, along with Google and other tech companies, has called for greater transparency from federal spy agencies. Twitter has criticized the secrecy shrouding the requests the government makes of tech companies when officials want them to assist in surveillance efforts, saying non-disclosure rules should be lifted.