a US judge
Yes, that’s how it works. Reddit is in the US. So is SITM & his research LLCs, AFAIK.
Reddit should have sued them years ago
Reddit should have simply closed a whole lot of infrastructure deficits & bad design decisions, years ago. PushShift was using the API in a way that was tolerated, in a way others used it. There wasn’t a coherent and contractually enforceable API TOS, as best as I can determine; there was no technology control enforcing any sort of de minimis clickthrough user agreement to the api tos that was stuck in an offsite Google form.
Reddit worked with PushShift
Reddit didn’t work with PushShift. PushShift exploited Reddit’s open use API that was intended for individual users and bot developers; there was no business relationship from Reddit to PushShift.
can’t sue PushShift for past activities under the current TOS
No, but if there’s a way to argue that the way PushShift exploited the Reddit API was unconscionable and violated case law or legislative law, they’d have a basis for suit. They can’t make the current TOS retroactive but that doesn’t mean that what PushShift engaged in is protected from lawsuits, regardless of the existence or enforceability of a prior TOS.
But I very much doubt Reddit is going to sue a guy whose vocation was running a nexus for data librarians, unless they’ve managed to determine that he has $$$$$$$ in assets & have some sort of proof was operating PushShift specifically to interfere with Reddit as a business / interfere with Reddit’s business relationships. Which, as far as I know, is a hhhhhhhhiiiiiighly unlikely set of conditions.
Reddit might want to sue to force PushShift to c & d distribution of dump files, but that would be throwing money in a lawyer pit. The dump files are distributed & they’re not being magically erased from tape backups & encrypted deep freeze storage.