Eleventh Lawsuit Against Social Media Providers for “Materially Supporting Terrorists” Fails–Palmucci v. Twitter

This case is before the same district court judge who handled Fields v. Twitter and Copeland v. Twitter. It involves the 2015 terrorist attack in Paris, but “[t]here are no allegations in the AC that Abaaoud, Laachraoui, or any of the terrorists identified as having played roles in the Paris Attacks used any of defendants’ social media platforms in the preparation for or carrying out the Attacks. However, there are numerous allegations that following the Paris Attacks, ISIS used YouTube to post videos claiming credit for and praising the attacks and used Twitter to announce release of its magazine articles praising the attacks.”

In light of the fact that 10 similar cases have all failed in court, the court needs only two brief paragraphs to reject the case. The court’s entire analysis (cites omitted):

…the allegations in this case are materially similar to the allegations regarding ISIS’s general use of defendants’ social media platforms to radicalize and promote attacks on civilians. Numerous courts have found similar allegations insufficient to state claims for direct or indirect liability under the ATA and under state law. In addition, the lack of plausible allegations that the terrorists used defendants’ social media platforms to plan or carry out the Paris Attacks, much less that defendants had some knowledge of that specific use, is fatal to Palmucci’s attempt to allege her claims.

I recognize that some of the District Court cases on which I rely are on appeal and that the Ninth Circuit may reach a different conclusion regarding indirect liability under the ATA (an issue that was not explicitly addressed by the Ninth Circuit in its Fields decision). That said, I will follow my prior analyses in the Fields and Copeland cases. As a result, the motion to dismiss is GRANTED. Palmucci was given an opportunity to explain why – in light of the caselaw identified above – her case should continue. She declined, essentially admitting that no additional facts could be alleged that might state her claims under the ATA or state law. Therefore, the dismissal is WITH PREJUDICE.

Really, there’s nothing more to say.

Case citation: Palmucci v. Twitter, Inc., 2019 WL 1676079 (N.D. Cal. April 17, 2019)

Prior Blog Posts:

Another Appellate Court Rejects “Material Support for Terrorist” Claims Against Social Media Platforms–Crosby v. Twitter
Tenth Lawsuit Against Social Media Providers for “Materially Supporting Terrorists” Fails–Sinclair v. Twitter
Ninth Lawsuit Against Social Media Providers for “Materially Supporting Terrorists” Fails–Clayborn v. Twitter
Eighth Lawsuit Against Social Media Providers for “Materially Supporting Terrorists” Fails–Copeland v. Twitter
Seventh Different Lawsuit Against Social Media Providers for “Material Support to Terrorists” Fails–Taamneh v. Twitter
Another Social Media “Material Support to Terrorists” Lawsuit Fails–Cain v. Twitter
“Material Support for Terrorists” Lawsuit Against YouTube Fails Again–Gonzalez v. Google
Fifth Court Rejects ‘Material Support for Terrorism’ Claims Against Social Media Sites–Crosby v. Twitter
Twitter Didn’t Cause ISIS-Inspired Terrorism–Fields v. Twitter
Section 230 Again Preempts Suit Against Facebook for Supporting Terrorists–Force v. Facebook
Fourth Judge Says Social Media Sites Aren’t Liable for Supporting Terrorists–Pennie v. Twitter
Another Court Rejects ‘Material Support To Terrorists’ Claims Against Social Media Sites–Gonzalez v. Google
Facebook Defeats Lawsuit Over Material Support for Terrorists–Cohen v. Facebook
Twitter Defeats ISIS “Material Support” Lawsuit Again–Fields v. Twitter
Section 230 Immunizes Twitter From Liability For ISIS’s Terrorist Activities–Fields v. Twitter