5 of tech's most infamous lawsuits

Pro tip: Twitter is not private email

As Apple aims its legal guns at HTC over alleged iPhone patent infringements our colleagues at T3.com have marked the occasional by looking back at 10 famous tech lawsuits.

Here are five that caught our eye:

1. Erik Estavillo vs Blizzard and World of Warcraft

Habitual litigant Erik Estavillo has sued Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo, but he surpassed himself with his legal pursuit of developer Blizzard in late 2009. He claimed World of Warcraft's "sneaky and deceitful practices" get in the way of his "pursuit of happiness," as the leisurely pace of the game's characters results in, "the player taking longer to get where he or she needs to go in the game."

Winona Ryder and Depeche Mode's Martin Gore have been subpoenaed to testify, as Estavillo considers them expert witnesses on the topic of alienation.

2. Erik Estavillo vs Sony

Mr Estavillo warmed up for his battle with Blizzard by suing Sony for banning him from the PlayStation Network, allegedly for some salty language while playing Resistance: Fall of Man.

The judge dismissed his £55,000 suit after determining the First Amendment - the constitutional right to free speech - did not apply to Estavillo's claim. He duly filed another suit against Sony, this time seeking $180,000.

3. Gregory McKenna vs Apple

In 2006 Gregory McKenna worked for a modelling agency that he is convinced was an elaborate front for the mob. Shortly after leaving its employ, he claims to have received death threats through the headphones of his iPod Mini and Shuffle. He surmised that Apple - in cahoots with the Mafia - had placed receivers in his MP3 players. He's claiming $14.3 million for stress and loss of earnings.

4. AMD vs Intel

Recent allegations by AMD and international unions suggested that Intel ran a "systematic worldwide campaign" of bullying and bribery to maintain its 80 per cent market share. In early 2009, Intel paid over $1bn to the European Union and $1.25bn to its rivals AMD in order to smooth over this unfortunate matter. We can't guarantee it, but we think we'd feel pretty smoothed if offered that amount of cash.

5. Horizon Realty Group vs Amanda Bonnen, Via Twitter

Stretching the limits of what constitutes libel in the modern world, Amanda Bonnen was served a still pending, $50,000 lawsuit in 2009 by her former landlord, Horizon Realty, for posting the following on Twitter: "Who said sleeping in a moldy [sic] apartment was bad for you? Horizon really thinks it's ok."

Whether that's fair comment is a matter of opinion, but Horizon's CEO Jeffrey Michael maintains that his company is a "Sue first, ask questions later organization," so we'll say that it isn't, to be on the safe side.

Read the full article at T3.com

Global Editor-in-Chief

After watching War Games and Tron more times that is healthy, Paul (Twitter, Google+) took his first steps online via a BBC Micro and acoustic coupler back in 1985, and has been finding excuses to spend the day online ever since. This includes roles editing .net magazine, launching the Official Windows Magazine, and now as Global EiC of TechRadar.