It used to be any idiot with a wifi connection could copy-paste someone else’s joke, tweet it and wait for the sweet sponsorship cash to roll in. Those days are over, technically speaking.

The Verge reports Twitter’s been allowing users to file DCMA takedowns over stolen tweets, and they don’t even have to be funny: news of the option broke this week after a freelance writer fought to keep credit for a “topical” juice cleanse joke.

I simply explained to Twitter that as a freelance writer I make my living writing jokes (and I use some of my tweets to test out jokes in my other writing). I then explained that as such, the jokes are my intellectual property, and that the users in question did not have my permission to repost them without giving me credit.

And indeed, a few tweets aggregated by spam accounts have been “withheld” by the site. But the juice cleanse jokes written by someone else are practically writing themselves now.

Which is all to say, you do have options, if you want to police your own copyright on Twitter, and you’d better believe it’s going to be an arduous, unforgiving exercise in futility. Fortunately, there is another, easy, and wholly underrated solution: never, ever tweet.

H/T The Verge. Contact the author at