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Sony PlayStation (Games) The Courts Linux

Judge Dismisses 'Other OS' Class-Action Suit Against Sony 403

Posted by Soulskill
from the product-may-not-behave-as-advertised dept.
An anonymous reader writes "You may recall that in early 2010, Sony decided to roll out an update that would remove the ability for PlayStation 3 owners to install a different operating system on the console, citing security concerns as the reason. Geeks and Linux enthusiasts were outraged at the move, particular since the "Other OS" functionality had been advertised as a feature of the PS3. A class-action lawsuit was soon brought against Sony. Many of the initial claims were thrown out, and now, a federal judge in California has granted Sony's motion to dismissed the lawsuit, saying, 'As a matter of providing customer satisfaction and building loyalty, it may have been questionable. As a legal matter, however, plaintiffs have failed to allege facts or articulate a theory on which Sony may be held liable.' Here's the full text of the order (PDF)."
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Judge Dismisses 'Other OS' Class-Action Suit Against Sony

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  • And the USAF (Score:5, Informative)

    by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn@nOsPam.gmail.com> on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:36PM (#38361706) Journal

    Geeks and Linux enthusiasts were outraged at the move ...

    And the United States Air Force [joystiq.com].

    • Re:And the USAF (Score:4, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:39PM (#38361794)

      They didn't care too much, Sony rolled out a firmware just for them anyway.

    • Yes, geeks and Linux enthusiasts at the Air Force.

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by eldavojohn (898314) *

        Yes, geeks and Linux enthusiasts at the Air Force.

        I think there would be some other people somewhat upset if you just dropped hundreds of thousands of dollars on what are now tiny black bricks useless to you. Accounts, commanding officers, taxpayers, etc.

        I wonder if a FOIA request [af.mil] would yield any information about what exactly those PS3s are doing now?

        • by abigsmurf (919188)
          Why are they useless? Why would the Airforce have any need to update those consoles? It's not like they need those consoles to be able to play GT5 and any bugs to be patched would be patched in Linux.
          • by Bucky24 (1943328)
            I suspect that at some point these consoles will fail. And at that point they would have to buy new ones, which would come with updated firmware. Unless they bought a warehouse full of replacements at the time, which is not impossible.
          • by bratwiz (635601)

            They need them to fly their top-secret stealth drones.
            Sony refused to let them load Linux and look what happened in Iran...

            I'm just sayin...

        • I think there would be some other people somewhat upset if you just dropped hundreds of thousands of dollars on what are now tiny black bricks useless to you. Accounts, commanding officers, taxpayers, etc.

          Except they didn't become useless bricks. These PS3s are not used for gaming, and so can quite easily avoid the update.

          • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

            by Anonymous Coward

            These PS3s are not used for gaming

            [citation needed]

  • Apparently... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:36PM (#38361708)

    Courts don't think false advertising is against the law anymore

    • Re:Apparently... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:42PM (#38361858) Homepage Journal
      The shrinkwrap agreement on the PS3 says they can change anything they want about the device at any time.

      Sony didn't advertise the OtherOS feature after they removed it, so trying to get them on false advertising is a stretch.

      I think the upshot is that you agreed to the EULA, and the EULA said Sony can do this, so the Judge doesn't see what leg you have to stand on. It was unpopular, but they didn't break any law. This is actually an important test for EULAs, since normally removing functionality from a device after the sale would cause legal problems, but the EULA prevented that.
      • Re:Apparently... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by mark-t (151149) <markt@@@lynx...bc...ca> on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:55PM (#38362150) Journal
        I think that the point is that they advertised the OtherOS feature *BEFORE* they removed it... and then they removed it, effectively making a form of bait-and-switch for people who had already bought one with the expectation of that capability.
      • by RingDev (879105)

        I am curious if the Judge would feel the same way if a software update prevented his car from going over 45 MPH.

        -Rick

        • by Bucky24 (1943328)
          I'm not sure that is the same. The ability to drive the car is the main feature of the car. Limiting that limits the main feature, ie the whole point of buying a car for most people. The ability to install a third party operating system was not the main feature of a PS3, and does not affect its main feature, ie playing games. So it would be more like removing the ability to fold down the back seats-something that does not affect the main feature of the car, but really annoys people who do use it.
          • by Bert64 (520050)

            Yes, it does...
            If you want to retain the ability to run linux, then you lose the ability to play any newer games (as these require a newer firmware)... This effectively creates 2 tiers of ps3 units, and games dont state on the packaging which tiers they work with.

            This also means that if you send your ps3 for repair, its likely to come back with a newer firmware that prevents you running linux.

            A more apt car analogy would be, you purchased a car which came with a sound system, and after owning the car for a

    • Re:Apparently... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by abigsmurf (919188) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:52PM (#38362088)
      That would be all well and good... Except Sony never really marketed the feature. A few odd quotes from Sony and some more detailed spec sheets from tech shows mentioning it are not in themselves marketing. It was never treated as a core feature by Sony and certainly wasn't marketed as such, the vast vast majority of users didn't know anything about it.

      Then there's the fact you were and still are able to use the Other OS feature on PS3s, you just can't update it (which means no PSN and a restricted library of games you can play). Courts accept that products can have limited lifetimes when it comes to support and Sony are more than entitled to release games for the PS3 that customers can't play on certain console configurations. The most obvious example of this would be PS Move only games. If you want to play those, you have to hand over more money for the Move kit and have to possibly mess around with your AV setup which was fine up until then.

      A convincing argument for both of these wasn't presented to courts and ultimately it's the courts who decide if there's a case to answer for.
      • Re:Apparently... (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Urza9814 (883915) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @05:41PM (#38362880)

        When you buy a PS3, it says support is only for a limited time. When you buy a PS3, it doesn't say it comes with PS Move, and when you buy those games they say they require PS Move. But when you bought a PS3 with the Other OS option, it never said that was for a limited time. It never said it only applied if you didn't want to use certain other features of the console. And it didn't say it could be removed if you sent your console in for service.

      • by langelgjm (860756)

        Then there's the fact you were and still are able to use the Other OS feature on PS3s, you just can't update it (which means no PSN and a restricted library of games you can play). Courts accept that products can have limited lifetimes when it comes to support and Sony are more than entitled to release games for the PS3 that customers can't play on certain console configurations.

        I took a look at the order, and it was entirely focused on the conditional access to the PSN. While it mentioned that the firmware update might have been required for certain game title and Blu-Rays, it did not explore those issues at all. While I understand the reasoning that PS3 buyers cannot reasonably expect to be able to access the PSN without ever altering their setup, playing Blu-Rays seems like a more basic functionality.

        I wonder if there is a case where someone wanted to continue to use "OtherOS" b

    • by ackthpt (218170)

      Courts don't think false advertising is against the law anymore

      What's yours isn't actually yours. EULA, Terms of Use, 2 year agreement, &c.

      Goes hand-in-hand with a society which doesn't read the wall-of-text but thrusts both hands out and squeals, "Gimme!"

  • wow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:37PM (#38361738)

    just wow.

    2015. Sony releases the PS4. Sony releases an update for the PS3 which removes all remaining functionality. When the console is turned on, the message "Buy a PS4!" is displayed. No games will play.

    And now it's legal!!!

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by game kid (805301)

      The sad part is that I fully expect this to happen, right down to the text of the message

      I bet Sony does that sort of thing to their own grandmas' PS3s if they don't bake their cake or serve their sushi the right way. ERR325: invalid cake response--ps3 cannot start but it is still better than wii because they have mario and fuck mario

    • Re:wow (Score:5, Insightful)

      by TheGratefulNet (143330) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:51PM (#38362062)

      as much as I hate saying this, if you buy sony products, you have only yourself to blame.

      sorry, but it really is true. you find the devil and you are surprised that the devil gets johnny law to do his bidding?

      come on, guys. stop funding sony! they make NOTHING that you absolutely must have. not a thing. and they have a long track record of evil-doing.

      what' it gonna take for kids today to stop buying sony?

      • sed /find/fund/

        you FUND the devil.

        oh well. some days I can't type for atrac.

      • Re:wow (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Anrego (830717) * on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @05:07PM (#38362368)

        what' it gonna take for kids today to stop buying sony?

        Geeks.. I suspect this has been done. Everyone else, it's going to take something that actually hurts them.

        Don't forget, Sony hasn't done anything that would really piss off the general population. Sony gets on our nerves because the areas they are evil in are highly visible to us, but to the average user, non-issues.

        Lest we forget, most users have never heard of the OtherOS feature, didn't care about DRM being installed on their computer (probably amazed it could fit in there with all the other crap they probably had running), and their biggest concern when their credit card info and personal details got stolen was "when can I play games again!".

        Even with the relatively high geek/gamer crossover, I suspect that even if every user who could define in a sentance what the OtherOS thing was about immediately boycotted Sony.. it wouldn't even register as a blip in the profit statements.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      That seems similar to what happened with my first gen iPod touch:
      You must download the latest version of this app to continue using it.
      You must download the latest version of iOS in order to update this app.
      You cannot update to the latest version of iOS because your iPod is too old.

      My solution: I bought an android phone.

    • by jimicus (737525)

      IANAL but AIUI you can't just file a complaint at court and expect a judge to join the dots with existing law. You have to explicitly say "Sony ripped me off contrary to law A". If the suit was started with just "Sony ripped me off!" (which, AFAICT, is exactly what happened), that's not good enough.

  • Car analogy (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Nidi62 (1525137) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:37PM (#38361746)
    Would the judge have come to the same conclusion if a car manufacturer released a mandatory update that removed cruise control?
    • by jandrese (485)
      Probably not, but car manufacturers and dealers don't have shrinkwrap legal agreements on their vehicles (yet), so it's really not the same thing.
      • by hedwards (940851)

        Shrink wrap legal agreements aren't enforceable and it's a shocker that the judge didn't know that. You can't have a legal agreement without a meeting of the minds and the ability to back out. Unfortunately, shrink wrap licenses don't permit for review as one typically has limited ability to return the product, and in many cases no ability.

        • by gstoddart (321705)

          Shrink wrap legal agreements aren't enforceable and it's a shocker that the judge didn't know that.

          I'm pretty sure that case precedent actually suggests they may [quora.com] be [reddit.com] enforceable [contractstandards.com].

          They can't make up crazy things that you can't legally sign away via contract (ie slavery or your first born), but they are widely deemed to be a valid contract.

          I'm not sure there's been any ruling which categorically says they aren't enforceable ... possibly in some countries, but generally I think they're more valid than you think.

    • Re:Car analogy (Score:4, Insightful)

      by nightfell (2480334) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:44PM (#38361938)

      If you bought the PS3 in order to use OtherOS, the update wasn't mandatory. It's only mandatory for games. No one had OtherOS forcibly removed.

      Not that I agree with their choice, but a Linux PS3 and a Gaming PS3 have different requirements. What was lost was the ability to have both fully functioning at the same time. This seems like something they should have been able to articulate to the judge, but if they just focused on "it's a mandatory update", which is a false statement, I can see how it would be dismissed.

      • by AdamJS (2466928)

        It's only mandatory for using other guaranteed functions and features of the system.

        • Are they guaranteed? If so, the case for a class action suit shouldn't be difficult.

          My suspicion is that they are not guaranteed.

      • Re:Car analogy (Score:4, Insightful)

        by gstrickler (920733) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @06:33PM (#38363578)

        Wrong.

        1. Anyone who send a failed machine to Sony for repair received a replacement unit with OtherOS removed.
        2. PSN and some new games require the firmware update, therefore, a non-updated PS3 is crippled and can't play games that are designed and market for updated PS3's. Since the PS3 is primarily marketed as a game console, the inability to play new games designed for the PS3 is contrary to the primary purpose of the machine, thus "crippling" it.

    • Re:Car analogy (Score:5, Informative)

      by Caerdwyn (829058) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:57PM (#38362182) Journal

      If you RTFPDF, an automotive analogy is, in fact, cited in the case. Here, let me get that for you...

      • "With the exception of the “Unjust Enrichment” claim discussed further below, all of the counts are based on plaintiffs’ fundamental contention that it was wrongful for Sony to disable the Other OS feature, or, more precisely, to put PS3 owners to the “Hobson’s choice” of either permitting the Other OS feature to be disabled or forgoing their access to the PSN and any other benefits available through installing Firmware Update 3.21. Plaintiffs offer an analogy: “if Toyota disabled the battery feature in its hybrids and forced owners to use only gasoline, it would not matter whether the auto’s warranties had expired.” Opposition at 1:8-9. In plaintiffs’ view, it should be self evident that, “A manufacturer cannot unilaterally take away a fundamental feature of a product after that product has been sold to a consumer – regardless of whether the warranty is still in effect.” Id. at 1:9-11."2

      But the judge said it's a flawed analogy (as most automotive analogies are):

      • The flaw in plaintiffs’ analogy is that they are claiming rights not only with respect to the features of the PS3 product, but also to have ongoing access to an internet service offered by Sony, the PSN. A somewhat fanciful, but more apt, analogy would be if Toyota sold hybrid vehicles with an advertisement campaign touting that Toyota owners would have access to a recreational driving facility, a no-speed limit amusement park for cars. Then, at some time thereafter, Toyota instituted a rule that its hybrids would not be permitted in the park unless the owners allowed the battery feature to be disabled. In those circumstances, Toyota hybrid owners who declined to authorize disabling of the battery feature would still have fully-functional hybrid vehicles, capable of running on an electric motor or a gasoline engine, as appropriate under the conditions. Similarly, PS3 owners who declined to install Firmware Update 3.21 still have fully-functioning devices, capable of either being used as game consoles to play games on optical disks, or as computers, with the Other OS feature.

      So, what the judge is saying is that this isn't really about Other OS. It's about access to PSN, and that linking access to PSN to disabling Other OS is legal. That doesn't make it ethical, but this is a court not a church. He has to rule on matters of law not emotion.

      For what it's worth, I think that Sony was slime for doing what it did (as they are for many other things that they have done... rootkits, not giving a damn about customer security, etc.), and it will be a cold day in hell before I buy a Sony product or fail to advise others to not buy any Sony product, but IN THIS CASE they didn't run afoul of the law. I also think that it's vastly preferable that judges wield their powers objectively rather than emotionally, because otherwise a racist or homophobic or nationalist or otherwise reprehensible judge would be completely able to get away with imposing their emotion as law.

      I also hope that some of the shrill voices here are never allowed to sit on a jury, because if they are, they would surely decide the case based upon who they liked and hated rather than on the facts and guilt-or-innocence. Mob-think is not a suitable substitute for law or rationality.

  • Huh? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Nerdfest (867930) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:37PM (#38361752)
    Sony advertised this as a specific feature of the platform. They then took it away (or took away other abilities if you chose to keep that one). How the hell could the case be dismissed?
    • by ksd1337 (1029386)
      Maybe it's time to update the famous Teddy Roosevelt quote: "Speak softly and carry a fat wallet; you will go far."
    • Sony advertised this as a specific feature of the platform. They then took it away (or took away other abilities if you chose to keep that one). How the hell could the case be dismissed?

      It could be corruption. I'm not alleging it here, just speculating, for fear of being sued by Sony. Even though based on this judgement I should be able to allege whatever I like then take away that feature at a whim. Sony may or may not own one or more judges. Or alleged judges as the case may be.

      Ipso facto ergo proctor hoc hoc dibildy do be do shebop. "Like a milking stool, my case rests on three legs". I am the law.

    • by Anrego (830717) *

      Probably because you effectively agree via the EULA to pretty much let them do whatever they want as a condition of using their product.

      It's dirty and I think the law needs to step in and remove that kind of power from EULAs, but it's reality!

    • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:59PM (#38362222)

      Read the ruling. What it boils down to is that, even though PSN + Other OS were both advertised features, there is no guarantee that PSN will exist indefinitely. And, the court acknowledges that it is at Sony's discretion. Because you have the choice of installing firmware 3.21, or not, Sony hasn't violated their original agreement to provide Other OS functionality.

      It's not very complicated, in fact it's downright easy to read, and fairly well articulated at that..

      If Sony had disabled Other OS without a user's choice, they would be paying some large settlement costs right now. As it is, they only pay their lawyers to defend against an obviously weak case.

      Sorry, that's just how it is.

      • by Jeng (926980)

        If I buy an item, and it has more than two features that I want I am going to be pissed right the fuck off if I have to choose later between the two features because I can only keep one. I bought them both, I should be able to use both unless otherwise compensated.

      • by slinches (1540051)

        And if it was as simple as that, there wouldn't be any argument. Too bad that's not the case at all. The judge either ignored or missed the significance of the plaintiff's claim that all PS3 games released since have (by Sony's rules) required firmware 3.21 or later to function. Not agreeing to the update didn't just cut off access to PSN, it effectively made it not a PS3 (by definition, since it can't play PS3 games).

      • Here's a question: can you "downgrade" the firmware? 'Cause if you can't, and the user "upgraded" by accident, then they don't really have the choice to run Other OS anymore, now do they?

    • How the hell could the case be dismissed?

      Want to know something amazing? You can find out! You can click that link up in the summary, read the full text of the decision, and find out! Isn't technology amazing?

      For what it's worth, the judge ruled that because Sony had not actually removed the functionality- what they had done instead was ban unmodified PS3s from accessing their service- what they were doing was legal. You may not agree with the decision, at least try to get a grasp on the logic behind it before you start yelling.

  • by Picardo85 (1408929) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:39PM (#38361802)
    In Finland Sony lost this battle and were judged to pay damages to everyone with the 1st gen PS3s that were affected.
    • Incorrect (Score:4, Informative)

      by abigsmurf (919188) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @05:10PM (#38362414)
      That isn't really true. The Finnish Consumer Complaints board investigated and came to the conclusion that they feel Sony should pay €100 in compensation for removing the feature.

      They are not a court body and their 'judgements' have no legal power. They are simply a consumer rights lobby group.
  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn@nOsPam.gmail.com> on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:40PM (#38361824) Journal
    Sony Marketing Executive: Okay all we're going to do is advertise that the Playstation 4 can play the games from any system ever made.
    Sony Engineer: But that's not true ... well, I mean it could technically run some sort of emulator for each system if it existed but ...
    Sony Marketing Executive: Shut up, we just announce after the launch that this functionality was disabled because of "security concerns."
    Sony Lawyer, Son of Satan: I can work with that.
  • by v1 (525388)

    how the fairly basic logic of "they sold me the product with the marketed feature xyz which I valued and used, then disabled it after purchase, without compensation and with only forced permission" doesn't warrant relief?

    (by "forced permission" I mean they asked, do you want your OtherOS to continue to work, or do you want your BluRay player to continue to work on new titles?" You were forced to choose which feature they were going to disable)

    Further, how was it that all of the individuals that opted out

    • (by "forced permission" I mean they asked, do you want your OtherOS to continue to work, or do you want your BluRay player to continue to work on new titles?" You were forced to choose which feature they were going to disable)

      Agreed; I would say any time the choices are "agree to these new, draconian terms, or we turn your $400 piece of hardware into a brick" would qualify as being agreed to under duress; perhaps I'm mistaken, but I was pretty sure any contractual agreement signed under duress was legally considered non-binding.

      Appeal it, maybe the next judge will have a fucking brain.

    • by Anrego (830717) *

      how the fairly basic logic of "they sold me the product with the marketed feature xyz which I valued and used, then disabled it after purchase, without compensation and with only forced permission" doesn't warrant relief?

      You have to squeeze in another step:

      "they had me agree to an EULA that basically allows them to do whatever the hell we want as a condition of using their product".

    • by bws111 (1216812)

      It is explained clearly in the order. The key is PSN, which is owned by Sony, not you. Access to PSN is completely at their discretion, and you have no reasonable expectation that you will have access forever. They changed the rules of PSN access to be 'no OtherOS'. YOU elected to install the upgrade (remove the feature) in order to continue access to THEIR service. Nothing was 'forced'. It was YOUR decision.

      • And newer games?

        Some games might require PSN for their DRM, or might require a newer firmware. Now, since most stores won't take back games, it's either

        a) give in and remove OtherOS by updating the firmware
        b) bite it and lose 60$ for an unplayable game.

        What if my console breaks and has to be serviced? I would *love* my carmaker to disable cruise control because the car was serviced under warranty...

        • by slinches (1540051)

          Actually, any games that were compiled after the release of firmware update 3.21 do require that firmware or later. I don't know exactly what the rules are, but I think Sony requires game developers to use the latest SDK available prior to release. Even with older games, there's no way to tell if it will work since there's no indication of firmware version requiremenst on the box and newer disk runs may carry the newer firmware requirement.

  • by Baloroth (2370816) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:42PM (#38361866)

    "Security concerns." This made me laugh, coming from Sony. Especially since it came in early 2010. It's a lie. Trotting out the "security" card just makes them look better.

    Unless, of course, by "security" they meant "preventing people from hacking our bootloader." Or trying, rather.

  • by MacTO (1161105) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:43PM (#38361896)

    Sure we were stuck with bugs and we wouldn't get wonderful whiz-bang features, but at least we wouldn't have to worry about the vendor modifying the device that we purchased after the fact. (Even though I wasn't hit by the PS3 fiasco, TI did something on their calculators quite a few years back.)

    For what it's worth, I think one of the arguments made in favour of Sony was that you didn't have to upgrade your PS3's firmware. Which may be true, but it doesn't negate the fact that the firmware updates are required for newer games and people also expect to buy newer games when they get a PS3.

  • by RichMan (8097) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:44PM (#38361914)

    You have to love the new EULA Sony put in place.

    http://legaldoc.dl.playstation.net/ps3-eula/psn/u/u_tosua_en.html

    Class Action Waiver. .... ((sorry had to remove the text I pasted -- stupid slashdot filter says I am using to many caps. I copied the original text verbatim))

  • I'm pretty sure a blatant bait-&-switch brakes some sort of law...
  • judge's logic (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bcrowell (177657) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @04:52PM (#38362086) Homepage

    You can see the judge's logic on p. 5 of the order. He says users had the option to refuse the software update, keep running Linux, and stop using PSN. "Nothing in plaintiffs' factual allegations or their arguments is sufficient to support a conclusion that Sony has any obligation to maintain the PSN in operation indefinitely." This seems strange to me. When you buy a PlayStation, part of what you're paying for is access to PSN. Of course nobody expects PSN to be operational in 100 years, but neither does anyone expect PSN to be permanently shut down one hour after they buy their PlayStation.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Of course nobody expects PSN to be operational in 100 years, but neither does anyone expect PSN to be permanently shut down one hour after they buy their PlayStation.

      Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on the circumstances), expectations are not part of legal contracts. While it would be nice if everyone fulfilled any contracts to the satisfaction of both parties, it would also make having those contracts pretty pointless. Since Sony does not advertise or guarantee access to PSN unconditionally, they are within their rights to cut off access to the PSN. It doesn't make the move any less unethical, but legislating ethics (particularly from a judicial bench) has a

  • Sounds like the lawyers didn't do a good job explaining Sony's fault

    • by canajin56 (660655)
      Correct. They hinged it all on "We deserve PSN forever" instead of "if you don't update you can't play games released after March 2010". Don't see how the judge could say "When you buy a PS3 there is no reasonable expectation that it will be able to play new PS3 games and BluRay movies". But they didn't make that claim so there's nothing to rule on in that regard. Judges can't do the lawyers' jobs for them!
  • by willaien (2494962) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @05:11PM (#38362420)

    When you buy a product, there's a reasonable expectation that, for the lifetime of the product, the features available to you at time of purchase will continue to be available, barring hardware/technical issues.

    For example, it is unreasonable for a company to sell, say, a laptop with a DVD burner, then disable your WiFi with a warning that enabling it will disable your DVD burner. It just doesn't make sense, from any angle, that a feature advertised on the box would be disabled in order to keep another feature mentioned on the box. It just boggles the mind that they feel this is an acceptable course of action.

    That said... a reasonable expectation may not translate into something actionable in a court of law. At the least, Sony should be shunned (I, for one, haven't purchased another Sony product since the incident, and have no intentions of doing so in the future. My PS3 is collecting dust at the moment, despite titles that intrigue me. I won't fund them directly or indirectly through licensing deals with game companies.) by all customers.

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