I was pretty excited to read that you could change your name on Twitter when there are inactive accounts that use your preferred name (I found out from an old friend of mine that actually did it, when she sent me this article).

So I wrote a nice friendly notice to Twitter, and this was the response.

Hi Paul Holmes,

Due to high ticket volume, Twitter Support is unable to change usernames in cases of inactive accounts. Unless your user name issue involves Terms of Service violations, you’ll have to wait until all inactive user names are released. We’re working on a better long term solution for this.

If your user name request concerns impersonation, trademark infringement, copyright, or another Terms of Service violation, please submit a request to the Terms of Service group via the web form. If you’re unable to use our web form, please send your request to terms@twitter.com for help from our Terms of Service group.

Thanks!
Support
Twitter Support

So there you have it. Unless they’re stealing your trademark or whatever, you’re stuck with what you have … for now.