Lawsuits these days aren’t too uncommon, but the basis for many of them are just plain silly. San Jose resident Erik Estavillo has filed a lawsuit against Sony Computer Entertainment of America for suppressing his freedom of speech. The way he alleges this was accomplished was by banning his PlayStation network account.
Estavillo, apparently disabled by fears such as agoraphobia, is seeking 55,000 dollars US in damages. In large, the lawsuit is about a kid who did too much trash talking while playing resistance, losing his account and a few dollars of prepaid points on the PSN marketplace.
Bannings such as these aren’t unheard of in the online community. Nintendo reportedly bans friend codes found hacking, but the number I would suspect is a great deal smaller. Microsoft however has become a bit infamous for their bannings.
An outcry amongst Xbox Live members has arisen in the past few years regarding homosexual gamers. People with gamertags that identify the user as Gay often get banned. A gamer who was also a lesbian was banned for identifying her sexuality in her profile. Even a case of a man whose name was actually Richard Gaywood got banned because he used it as his gamertag.
While those cases are focused solely on arguable discrimination against homosexual gamers, this lawsuit looks to have little grounds. If the forum in which his freedom of speech were intruded upon was not online he would have some basis for a lawsuit.
Since that is not the case, and that his account is apart of the worldwide web there’s likely an issue there. Further evidence comes from the terms of service he agreed to follow by signing up for the account on the Playstation network to begin with.
My guess is that Estavillo hopes for a quick and easy settlement due to the amount that he’s suing for. If that doesn’t happen then Estavillo is in for a world of hurt as the multi-billion dollar company comes crashing down on top of him like Mickey Roarke doing the Ram Jam.