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Sony to ban class action suits for PSN usersFollow

#1 Sep 16 2011 at 1:16 PM Rating: Good
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Sony is preparing to ban gamers from the PlayStation Network (PSN) unless they waive the right to collectively sue it over future security breaches.

The firm has amended PSN's terms and conditions and users have to agree to them next time they log in.

The move comes months after a string of hacking attacks compromised over 100 million accounts of the PlayStation Network subscribers.

It is, however, possible to opt out of the agreement within the next 30 days.

Gamers will now have to try to resolve any legal issues with an arbitrator picked by Sony, before being able to file a lawsuit.

The new clauses, dubbed "Binding Individual Arbitration," state that "any Dispute Resolution Proceedings, whether in arbitration or court, will be conducted only on an individual basis and not in a class or representative action or as a named or unnamed member in a class, consolidated, representative or private attorney general action".

The re-written terms and conditions are being presented to gamers when they log in, but some have questioned who will notice the changes.

Tech news site The Register wondered who would notice the small print outlining the opt-out terms, and not simply click the "agree" box having scrolled all the way down.

Those that want to opt out will have to send a letter to Sony's Los Angeles headquarters in the US.

Once they do, the subscribers will be able to keep their right to file a class action lawsuit without any need for arbitration.

But before subscribers have a chance to opt out, they will still be required to agree to the new terms the next time they log into their accounts.

Otherwise they will not be able to use the online services.

A class action lawsuit filed against Sony in April after the first attack, in which the details of 77 million users were stolen and PSN went offline for 40 days, could end up costing the Japanese electronics giant billions of dollars.

Sony Online Entertainment, the company's computer games service, was also hit, as well as the Sony Pictures website, exposing personal information for 25 million more accounts.

In addition, personal data of 2,000 consumers was stolen from a Sony Ericsson website in Canada and details of 8,500 users were leaked on a Sony Music Entertainment website in Greece.

Some time later, a group called Lulz Security claimed to have broken into Sonypictures.com.

Sony has since apologised over the security breaches and offered compensation packages.


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-14948701

Edited, Sep 16th 2011 3:45pm by jtftaru
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#2 Sep 16 2011 at 1:28 PM Rating: Good
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Saw that (and accepted the changes, because I want to use my netflix). Definitely not happy about it though.
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#3 Sep 16 2011 at 1:49 PM Rating: Good
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There's actually a contingency clause later on in the agreement that acknowledges that this may not be strictly legal. I'd wager that this isn't something that would stand up in court, in the event of a class-action suit.

I haven't given it a close read-through myself, though. I wonder if there are any restrictions on individual suits? If not, then I wouldn't concern myself at all.

Either way, I don't suspect that such clauses will fly if push comes to shove.


On a different note, I'm surprised at the decision. It's questionable whether this would protect them. It's not a good PR move, and Sony is supposed to be trying to rebuild their image right now. Perhaps it's motivated by investors?

Edited, Sep 16th 2011 3:50pm by Eske

Edited, Sep 16th 2011 3:51pm by Eske
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#4 Sep 16 2011 at 1:54 PM Rating: Good
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These are the updated terms and conditions.
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#5 Sep 16 2011 at 2:21 PM Rating: Good
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Eske Esquire wrote:


On a different note, I'm surprised at the decision. It's questionable whether this would protect them. It's not a good PR move, and Sony is supposed to be trying to rebuild their image right now. Perhaps it's motivated by investors?



That or because the vast vast majority of users dont read up about it on the net, dont read the T&C, and don't care.
#6 Sep 16 2011 at 3:19 PM Rating: Good
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KTurner wrote:
Eske Esquire wrote:


On a different note, I'm surprised at the decision. It's questionable whether this would protect them. It's not a good PR move, and Sony is supposed to be trying to rebuild their image right now. Perhaps it's motivated by investors?



That or because the vast vast majority of users dont read up about it on the net, dont read the T&C, and don't care.


That'd all just be time better spent gettin' my Madden on, bro. AM I RIGHT?!

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Edited, Sep 16th 2011 5:20pm by Eske
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#7 Sep 16 2011 at 3:24 PM Rating: Good
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exactly :P
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