Transparency. We aim for it in most everything we do at Automattic. When it comes to legal demands from the government, being fully transparent can be hard and even impossible in cases where we are prohibited by law from revealing information about a legal request we receive. Nowhere is the lack of transparency more controversial than in the area of National Security Letters (“NSLs”).
Today we are releasing and publishing redacted versions of five NSLs, which we hope will add to the public’s understanding of this legal tool and help inform the debate about their scope and use.
We would also like to share some information about the process we followed to lift the nondisclosure restrictions associated with these NSLs and provide copies of our correspondence with the government on this subject. We hope this information will be useful to other companies who may wish to take advantage of the legal options that are currently available to challenge NSL nondisclosure orders.
What is an NSL?
NSLs are a form of government legal process (like a subpoena) used to request information from communications service providers, like phone and internet companies, about their users in