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Sony Sued Over PSN 'No Suing' Provision 384

Posted by Soulskill
from the had-to-see-that-coming dept.
An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from the Examiner: "In a grand dose of irony today, Sony was sued over a term in the PlayStation Network's End User Agreement that states that users cannot sue Sony. These terms were added in September, after a long string of Sony hacks (the official count is that Sony got broken into 17 times in a space of about 2 months), which included a massive outage of the PlayStation Network itself. The suit that was filed today is a class action suit for all of those who bought a PS3 and signed up for the PSN before the September update to the EULA. The suit also claims that this is a unfair Business practice on Sony's part, and requires users to forgo their rights in order to use the device that they purchased."
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Sony Sued Over PSN 'No Suing' Provision

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  • Re:EULAs (Score:5, Interesting)

    by InsightIn140Bytes (2522112) on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:06PM (#38441746)
    In this specific case Sony also allowed you to opt-out from that specific provision and still accept the rest and use PSN, you only had to give them written notice about it. So if you want to bash Sony, it would be good to at least stay in truth.
  • Re:EULAs (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jazzmans (622827) on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:12PM (#38441844) Journal

    PSN is required to use Netflix, So, yes, it is required to 'use' the PS3.

    I don't game, and didn't buy the ps3 to game. I bought it to act as a media viewer. Not being able to watch netflix on my bigscreen is a huge problem. I had to agree to the new TOS or the netflx app wouldn't connect.

    I'd sign onto this class action, you bet.

      I'll never buy a sony product again.

    jaz

  • Rights, in Canada (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Teunis (678244) <teunis@NospaM.wintersgift.com> on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:17PM (#38441920) Homepage Journal
    One is not allowed to sign rights away in Canada, from what I heard (from lawyers, although I'm most definitely not one)
    Mind, EULAs aren't normally considered binding either.
  • Consumer Law (Score:5, Interesting)

    by EEPROMS (889169) on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:18PM (#38441940)
    I can't speak for the rest of the world but here in Australia it is illegal to infer in a contract that a consumers "legislated" rights have been waved, from memory it's $10,000 per infringement.
  • Common Nonsense (Score:5, Interesting)

    by WarpedCore (1255156) on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:24PM (#38442008)
    I agree it's an unfair act to strangle customers with new provisions to older purchases. I don't believe I have a working system that could log onto PSN currently to accept those provisions but I'm considering sending an opt-out to Sony's legal department just in case because I have a lot of older digital purchases from the Playstation Network dating from 2006-2009. If a lawsuit does happen over the EULA and it works in the favor of people that are entitled to class action ability (or even the ability to launch a lawsuit on my own), I want to be a part of it.

    You can't get a refund for anything on the Playstation Network. Trust me, I tried. After SCEA turned the keys over to SNEA (or whatever abbreviation Sony's using for their digital networking division) and the hacking that bought PSN down for a month, I wrote a letter to Sony explaining that I've lost faith in their digital service and their ability to secure vital financial and personal information and could no longer A) Be their customer B) Agree to their new terms because it's not the service I signed up for in November of 2006 (and it might have never been with the way EULAs are crafted). I can either have to forfeit your ability to log in or accept the new terms.

    EULAs have become this living contract that only favors the company and totally, unconditionally screws the customer. Period. Sony is a case example of excessive abuse of EULAs because of their management and business shortcomings and have a total disconnect with their customers.
  • by artor3 (1344997) on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:30PM (#38442106)

    The Supremes already ruled on this, and unsuprisingly we got a 5-4 ruling that corporations are better than people. Until the conservative stranglehold on the SCOTUS is broken, Americans won't be allowed to sue any company they've entered into a contract with. Now, maybe EULAs don't count for this. But given the court's corporatist bent, I wouldn't count on it.

  • Re:EULAs (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:53PM (#38442324)

    And some people might be willing to sign themselves up for slavery. Doesn't mean it should be allowed.

    That said, how many people actually read EULAs? There are simply too many, and they are always long and filled with legalese.

  • by jd (1658) <imipak@yaCOLAhoo.com minus caffeine> on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:53PM (#38442326) Homepage Journal

    That is something the courts have been hesitant to rule on but I believe that the US courts have ruled things like First Sale Doctorine, etc, take precedent over any such agreement. (ie: the EULA can't violate the law or otherwise impose a system contrary to the law.) Not being able to sue Sony in the event of Sony violating civil law - ie: denial of access to any system that can give relief - is usurping the courts entirely. This might not go down too well with judges, since if it's allowed, any product could have such a provision. If they allow one company to exempt itself from the legal system, they create a precedent (something judges are VERY loath to do) and case-law which would essentially state that any company could stipulate that a purchaser can't sue.

    The civil court system depends heavily on people being able to sue each other. If the civil court system were to allow one party to opt-out, those judges and lawyers dependent on the lawsuits for work would be out of business. I just can't see the judges voluntarily writing themselves pink slips.

    Personally, I think there's way too much litigation in the US, but this isn't the right way to reduce it. Especially in Sony's case, when fewer rootkits and more security admins might have been cheaper and have produced better results than hiring lawyers.

  • Re:Consumer Law (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Jackdaw Rookery (696327) * on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:56PM (#38442348) Homepage Journal

    It's unlawful here in Canada too. Seems like they can only apply this in the USA.

  • Re:Consumer Law (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jd (1658) <imipak@yaCOLAhoo.com minus caffeine> on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @07:57PM (#38442360) Homepage Journal

    I still think that plaintiffs should be able to feed CEOs of malignant companies to the salt water crocodiles. The TV coverage would be so much better than most of the regular programming and it shouldn't require that many before corporate practices clean right up.

  • by future assassin (639396) on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @08:07PM (#38442438) Homepage

    >Now, do you plan on buying their products again?

    Have you looked at the world lately? Some or really a lot of people will look the other way for what the stand for if it means a new shiny to show off to their friends.

    My wife gave me a weird look when she said she was going to get the daughter a Sony eBook reader and I told her that there will be no Sony products in this house , ever.

  • by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland @ y a hoo.com> on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @08:20PM (#38442560) Homepage Journal

    That's too bad, Sony makes some great products. So tell me, what bastion of perfection do you buy your goods from?

  • Re:EULAs (Score:4, Interesting)

    by AK Marc (707885) on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @08:58PM (#38442958)

    You don't have to use PSN to use a PS3, and you are also free to return the PS3 if you don't like the EULA for its online component.

    You must use PSN to use some integral features or games/content. Play TV will fail eventually if you never sign in. And you *can't* return it if the EULA changes and you don't agree. Walk in to Best Buy returns and try to take back a 3-year old PS3 with or without receipt and see how it goes. You claim it to be untrue, but it seems explicitly true to me.

  • Re:EULAs (Score:5, Interesting)

    by similar_name (1164087) on Tuesday December 20, 2011 @09:08PM (#38443050)
    So how is a 12 year old held to contract law?
  • Re:EULAs (Score:3, Interesting)

    by msobkow (48369) on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @12:24AM (#38444404) Homepage Journal

    And as per usual, the American's can't deal with the truth and vote down anything that reminds them that their idealistic and naive view of what their country used to be about has long been abandoned.

    In retrospect, I'm glad I never succeeded in getting my permanent residency in the US. It stopped being a place I wanted to call home when they over-reacted to the terrorist attack on 9/11, and has only gone downhill since.

    May the American people wake up to what their legislators and businesses are doing to a once great nation.

  • Re:EULAs (Score:4, Interesting)

    by pete6677 (681676) on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @12:42AM (#38444540)

    If anyone could be absolved of all legal liability just by getting the other party to sign a waiver, then why does nearly every business in existence have a general liability insurance policy?

    Why do doctors pay a ton of money for malpractice insurance when they could instead make their patients sign a waiver?

    Drafting a liability release form is one thing - having it hold up in court is quite another.

  • Re:EULAs (Score:4, Interesting)

    by hawkinspeter (831501) on Wednesday December 21, 2011 @06:34AM (#38446384)
    I'm a PS3 FAT owner (not the first model, but the one with only 2 USB ports and no Emotion chip) and used to use the OtherOS. It was a big consideration when buying the PS3 as I intended on installing Ubuntu and setting it up as a media box.

    When Sony stole that feature away from me, I had to backup my PS3, format it to remove the Ubuntu partition and then restore the games partition.

    I don't care how many other people wanted to use OtherOS - I paid money for it, used it and then had it stolen from me.

    Never will I buy from Sony again.

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