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Mobile Device Reviews Website Sues Former Employee Over His Twitter Followers, Demands $340,000

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File -- At 17,000 followers, Noah Kravitz is a top tweeter. (credit: Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

File — At 17,000 followers, Noah Kravitz is a top tweeter. (credit: Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP/CBS Charlotte) — An Internet company is suing its former editor in chief, saying he left the firm and took his 17,000 Twitter followers with him.

PhoneDog LLC says Noah Kravitz owes them $340,000 because when Kravitz left to do freelance work, he changed his Twitter name from PhoneDog_Noah to noahkravitz, and kept his followers. He eventually went to work for competitor TechnoBuffalo, where he is an editor at large, according to his Linkin.com profile.

Kravitz, of Oakland, Calif., says in court documents he did nothing wrong and tweeted a screenshot of a former colleague’s Facebook post that details how PhoneDog treated its employees’ twitter accounts. According to community manager John Ashton Edgar, directions from PhoneDog’s president instructed employees to promote the material they produce for the company by tweeting to their followers. Edgar added he was to instruct employees that their accounts were personally owned.

PhoneDog is website that reviews mobile devices such as phones and tablets. It has offices based in Mount Pleasant, S.C., along the coast.

PhoneDog says Kravitz should pay $2.50 per follower per month for eight months. He worked for PhoneDog from 2006 until last year.

A hearing is set for next month.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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