It's not technically illegal, but copy/pasting things might get you banned from Twitter …
saw someone spill their high end juice cleanse all over the sidewalk and now I know god is on my side
— uh (@runolgarun) July 9, 2015
—-^^^ Not necessarily the most creative or hilarious joke that’s ever been written in the history of one-liners, but the above quip is one that’s wreaking havoc on unoriginal, plagiarizing copy/paster Twitter comedians. The kerfuffle began-a-brewin’ earlier this month after freelance writer, Olga Lexell, wrote the above tweet. She began seeing the same tweet — mistakes and all — pasted on other users’ updates and plead to Twitter about the infractions.
She says via her account that she had gone to Twitter and explained, as a writer, the site is a platform she uses to test out comedic material — and that as such her 140 characters are her "intellectual property." Twitter apparently agrees and has since been blocking users from writing out (or just plain copy/pasting) the joke.
Which likely has nothing to do with it being illegal for spammers to use someone else’s material (she probably wouldn’t have a case in court), but Twitter’s “Terms of Service” (the long form people click “yes” on without ever reading when signing up) clearly states “repeatedly post(ing) other users’ account information as your own (bio, Tweets, url, etc.)” is a violation and will be handled accordingly.
Basically, it’s Twitter’s pool party; they can swim any way they want to. The infractions are obvious, so blocked they go. This seems to be a first that they’ve taken action to block copied tweets, however, and may very well be a shift in the way it deals with plagiarism or similar issues.
So while it's not against the law to copy/past other peoples' Twitter jokes, it's fucking rude — and something everyone will likely notice anyways, so why bother? Twitter is on notice, and it would be awfully dissapointing if anyone were banned from telling 37 followers how they feel about that guy wearing that one shirt at a place you want people to know you're at.
If you're wondering why Twitter complied with my copyright takedown requests. pic.twitter.com/MNzZPCHWNc
— uh (@runolgarun) July 25, 2015