PS3 Linux Lawsuit Could Cost Sony Billions

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The scope of the class action lawsuit facing Sony over its removal of PS3 Linux support could include over 10 million consoles, potentially reaching billions of dollars in refunds if everything goes the lawyers’ way.

The law firm handling the case is claiming the console’s high price was due to the inclusion of Linux support, most probably in an effort to increase the size of the final settlement:

“This class definition reflects, in part, that Sony commanded a much higher price for the gaming console based on the functionality of the ‘Other OS’ feature at the time of its launch and trumpeted the ‘Other OS’ feature in its subsequent marketing.

As a result, consumers paid much more for a product than they should otherwise have been charged now that Sony has disabled the ‘Other OS’ feature.”

The firm is urging PS3 owners to hang onto consoles and receipts if they want in on the action.

With lawyers seeking an “everybody in the country who bought the PS3 from the time of launch until March 27, 2010” scope, some 13 million PS3s would be included in the suit.

Even restricting the scope to pre-Slim PS3s, 9 million PS3s could easily be included. Successful suits in less litigious nations seem less likely, but over 30 million PS3s worldwide presents a huge potential liability.

Amazon’s discretionary refund of $100 for lost Linux support sets a threatening precedent for Sony – presumably a court enforced refund would be much less.

A substantial success for such a suit would probably spell doom for the PlayStation – billions of dollars in additional liability would be a huge blow to Sony’s struggling financial position, and in the boardroom would have an even worse effect on the perceived importance of SCE to Sony as a whole.

However much the final lawsuit comes to, it seems unlikely any console will ever officially support a third party OS again after such a fiasco.


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    Comment by Anonymous
    18:34 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Shoot! I don't have my receipt. I know I got it November '09 though.

    But wow, the Playstation could actually die. Sony could be forced to shut down its gaming division. Oh boy, imagine if that happened. I wonder who would rise and take Sony's place. If they rise, that is. Sony pretty much stole the spot from Sega and Microsoft filled in the gap, I guess you could say.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:01 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    SONY REMOVE LINUX SUPPORT BECAUSE THE EXPLOIT FOR THE CRACK WAS DISCOVERED UNDER LINUX FOR PS3
    I NEVER BUY PS3..
    PC FOREVER
    YOU N00B

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:14 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Caps lock more bitch!

    Avatar of taz0x
    Comment by taz0x
    16:58 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    you know I was thinking of how this suit would never pass because of the legit reasoning of taking away the Linux feature (with piracy being a problem with EVERYTHING), but the fact that the initial price of the system included the fee of paying for the actual linux feature makes sense of why this suit came this far. BUT my question is this:

    linux is an open source FREE OS, would it REALLY cost more than 60 US dollars to have something like that implemented on a console which the motherboard already acts like a personal computer? i'm thinking that price is much less.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:10 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Doesn't matter if PS3 cost more or same with "Other OS". As written in summary - it could be just a way to increase amount of cash they get.
    What matters is this - Advertised feature got removed. What you get to choose is to:
    a) Don't have Linux support
    b) Use PSNetwork, play new games and playback new BR discs.

    You can't have both a) and b), but both were advertised as part of the product. This is whats its about, and what Sony can't deny. Who cares why they did? They could even argue that they are saving Earth by doing so, doesn't matter. I'm not sure how its in other countries, but here in Poland its not allowed to do as Sony did. Recently Microsoft got his balls hammered by our consumer associating and now every1 who bought Xbox360 can either get full refund, or partial refund, cause advertised Live! service is not supported in Poland for some stupid reasons [who cares what they are anyway].

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:05 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    First Toyota got hit with several safety recalls, now Sony got slap with a billion dollars class action lawsuit. What next? Japanese giant companies seems to be very unlucky this year, I hope this is not a patent for the rest of 2010.

    Microsoft & Nintendo are probably snickering while watching Sony walking down the hall of shame...

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:41 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Why do i see this eventually leading to "PS3s no longer sold in America!"?

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:25 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    If that happens, then it would be okay to make rape games for the PS3, no?

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:43 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    "Hey, this gaming console is pretty awesome, but it'd be even more awesome to bankrupt the company whose responsible for the only decent console currently around, just because I'm poor." Poor people are what's wrong with this world.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:30 08/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Rich people who exploit the poor for their own amusement are just as much what's wrong with this world.

    Bottom line: Selfish behavior by selfish people, rich, poor, and everything in-between, makes an eyesore out of humanity upon the face of creation.

    Want to change this aspect of the human condition? Start from within. Everything else will eventually follow from your example....or founder itself on it's own excesses and subsequently perish.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:41 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    simple solution for sony: reenable other os support. case closed.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:28 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    ...karma for what happened to lik-sang?

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:58 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The lawyers would make billions. PS3 owners would be lucky to get a $5 refund certificate. That's what always happens in class-action lawsuits.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:49 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sony took away Linux capability to help prevent loss of money from pirates cracking their console. How ironic that it is possible that they themselves will do far more damage to their bottom line than any pirates possibly could've done.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:44 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm all up for sticking it to large corporations but this will do more harm than good. I'm not a sony fanboy but this would utterly destroy the company. I hope there's away for this to be resolved where the gamers get their Linux support and Sony doesn't get financially raped.

    Avatar of Desuka
    Comment by Desuka
    16:11 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    PS3 Nas No games? That's old news now. Soon it's gonna be 'Sony Has No Money' (if the lawyers win)

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:21 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    This'd be hilariously awesome if it happened. Sony has certainly gotten cocky enough to need taking down a few pegs.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:05 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    What a load of bull. Out of the millions of PS3's this guy is including probably 1% of people gave a crap about the Other OS feature.

    It was removed for a completely legitimate reason and never marketed as a key selling feature. This should be thrown out of court.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:58 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    THis whole thing sounds like the Comcast Throttling Fiasco all over again.

    Whats going to end up happening is they'll go to court, the court will say "Refund your customers" and all they'll do is make a Fund and say "Those who have reciepts can get 20 bucks back and a big fuck you", all the while showing their stiff middle fingers to the courts proving that they can make a work-around so they don't lose as much.

    Court or no court this is a lose-lose for consumers. You may have bought the system, but the moment you connect to the PSN, anything they say goes for the most part when it comes to your system, because they are still "developing" content and features for the system.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:11 08/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    the problem of sony, is if they goes to the lawyers's way and lose they need to pay much money, and probably they intend to recover this billions of dollars with the console price...probably more expensive.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:57 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Fuck yeah, March 23rd

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:56 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Alright, I'm just gonna analyze the situation here.

    People who ride Sony like a whore on dick complaining towards people with actual logical statements about why OtherOS should stay. Now my question is why?

    Why argue amongst each other who play the SAME system? Most of the arguments against OtherOS is "Why help Sony lose money?". Just to let you know, they aren't the guy who is suing them is. People getting money back is a byproduct of the lawsuit IF he does win.

    My personal opinion is that he should win. It basically puts a clamp down on a really good feature of the console, which in the beginning, Sony semi-boasted said feature. To those who say "But it's only going to forward the advent of piracy on the Playstation 3!!!111", you clearly have no grasp on the situation.

    Piracy isn't just the reason people are getting mad, it's the fact that your freedom to use the system has been reduced (An analogy would be to think of China filtering its internet, but bring it to the US, you'd be pretty pissed off about that).

    Even if they do manage to get piracy onto Linux (something that doesn't really emulate games well in the first place from what I've seen) there is still a hypervisor in place that limits the Playstation 3's ability to access graphics.

    For the ability to play PS3 games that are burned to disc off of torrents and the internet and such, the program that would do this would have to go right out of Linux's boundaries and interact directly with the system, sort of making the claims of piracy on OtherOS a little far-fetched.

    In conclusion: for those who blindly ride Sony's back, remaining blissfully ignorant of the whole entire workings of a system, stop it, read up on stuff and THEN make a logical argument.

    -Anon

    Avatar of Lioncash
    Comment by Lioncash
    10:10 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Alright, I'm just gonna analyze the situation here.
    People who ride Sony like a whore on dick complaining towards people with actual logical statements about why OtherOS should stay. Now my question is why?
    Why argue amongst each other who play the SAME system? Most of the arguments against OtherOS is "Why help Sony lose money?". Just to let you know, they aren't, the guy who is suing them is. People getting money back is a byproduct of the lawsuit IF he does win.
    My personal opinion is that he should win. It basically puts a clamp down on a really good feature of the console, which in the beginning, Sony semi-boasted said feature. To those who say "But it's only going to forward the advent of piracy on the Playstation 3!!!111", you clearly have no grasp on the situation.
    Piracy isn't just the reason people are getting mad, it's the fact that your freedom to use the system has been reduced (An analogy would be to think of China filtering its internet, but bring it to your home country, you'd be pretty pissed off about that).
    Even if they do manage to get piracy onto Linux (something that doesn't really emulate games well in the first place from what I've seen) there is still a hypervisor in place that limits the Playstation 3's ability to access graphics.
    For the ability to play PS3 games that are burned to disc off of torrents and the internet and such, the program that would do this would have to go right out of Linux's boundaries and interact directly with the system, sort of making the claims of piracy on OtherOS a little far-fetched.
    In conclusion: for those who blindly ride Sony's back, remaining blissfully ignorant of the whole entire workings of a system, stop it, read up on stuff and THEN make a logical argument.
    -Lioncash

    Avatar of Ojougan
    Comment by Ojougan
    12:42 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    damn, i scrolled the whole post looking for someone who noticed the M$ image in a linux post. well, i guess this is just about rant and not defending the open software philosophy.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:01 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sony: Okay. We will give you people refunds
    People:*takes money*
    People:*thinks* Shit...I gotta sell all these ps3 games...extra controllers...accessories...
    People:*goes to a game store* WHAT??? Only 20 bucks?? :(

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:16 17/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sonys decision to kill features we all paid for is beyond idiotic, its criminal. what they did is deliberately hack hardware we legally purchased and used. The damage goes beyond loss of linux. the firmware downgrades have also been bricking consoles in large numbers & intruducing numerous malfunctions. If any of us did this to thousands of people you can bet we'd be arrested n imprisoned.

    4 any of you who've folllowed sony news in the past while will know the company is already in a very precarious position. Recent losses for the fiscal year end are $441 million. Alienating customers by the thousands is at best insane.

    Something 4 all of us to consider is this: even if by some miracle sony survives their own stupidity of the current scandal they've lost a great many futre sales, not just games or their next console either but all across their product line. But considering their track record of bad decisions & heavy quality control problems thats a good thing for us "consumers".

    What we must all remember is this is not the unquestionable sony socialist republic, this is a world were we have choices. I for 1 have wisely chosen to no longer spend my hard earned money on sonys questionable business practices & dubious products. Thousands of others have done the same and none of us have any regrets.

    1 final not to the diehard sony fans, Up until the end of march I was one of you. Thankfully thats a mistake I do NOT have to live with.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:23 12/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    They are not going to win. Sony's disclaimer clearly states that they have the right to change things like this when ever they deem it nessessary. If these idiots read it they wouldn't be trying crap like this.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:00 12/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I doubt such disclaimer is enforceable. They would be idiots if they didn't even try to sue. Do you really think it is okay if Sony takes away features from already sold products.

    The only reason they do these things is because people let them get away with it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:31 07/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    It does everything except Linux.

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:44 10/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Whelp. After reading the comments, its time i get a 360. If this shit goes through sony is fucked.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:26 10/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    sounds like sony need to hire pheonix wright

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:13 08/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sony treated it's customers like criminals, Sony ended up in court. That's justice.

    Now if only we could nail all the other companies that treat their customers like that when they use DRM.

    Avatar of sirhelmet
    Comment by sirhelmet
    13:09 08/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    did everybody on earth forget that it actually COSTS sony money to make these consoles. looking at it that way, we should be paying more for the system. considering that this console gives you the biggest bang for your buck, go buy a 2nd hard drive instead of a blu-ray player or netbook, and go dual OS on the comp you have

    Avatar of rihoko
    Comment by rihoko
    00:27 09/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    i think SCE's best move is to wrap this up asap - settle the payment,etc because they're in the wrong here and the faster this gets settled, the less cost this whole fiasco will be in the long run.
    For an MNC this size, 1-2 billion added to the 10-20 billion yearly loss shouldn't be too painful imo.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:03 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Aaaah, thank goodness I made the right choice by buying an XBox 360. :)

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:58 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    NO Aretfact, it does not 'seem unlikely any console will ever officially support a third party OS again after such a fiasco.'

    It seems unlikely any console will ever officially REMOVE support for a third party OS again after such a fiasco.

    If this lawsuit originated anywhere besides America I'd say they honestly wanted Linux back. But this is just a money grab, however it is a justified money grab if it punishes Sony- both in the press and in the wallet. This should teach manufacturers in the modern internet console era that you can't just revoke functionality because you feel like it or it's not cost-effective for you. If you included it, and you advertised it, you're stuck with it however much you think it may be an albatross.

    And in this case, let's not beat around the bush:
    We all know why it was removed, because it gave owners an opportunity to hack the hardware, something Sony doesn't want.

    Comment by Dark Mage
    00:33 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The easiest and cheapest thing Sony can do is simply put out another update that restores linux support.

    Then they also need to fire all the morons who thought it was a good idea to remove it in the first place followed by a public apology.
    This will prevent future stupidity besides their actions gave the company's public image a black eye and may have cost it millions.

    The Share holders should be pressuring Sony to follow this route.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:10 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yes, "could". The Earth also "could" be hit by a meteor bringing on a new ice age.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:20 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    SCE's officials should publicly execute their whole marketing department at once.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:25 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Give me a reason why I should care.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:59 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Too bad for them they agreed to the EULA, so I see this lawsuit going nowhere.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:17 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Too bad EULA means nothing in court.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:10 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yea, they just take all that time and money to write up all this stuff for shits and giggles you know.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:07 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sony deserve this to be honest.

    They've been slowly killing themselves for a few years now.

    "We can assure you that the PS3 *will* have backwards compatability."

    Only a few did, then they removed it.

    Yes, yes, we can still buy PS2s for now, but once they stop making them and yours breaks, you're kinda fucked.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:20 07/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Meh... PS2 emulators have been around, and by the time my PS2 breaks I'm sure the emulators will have greatly improved. If not, I'm suing Sony!

    Avatar of SunnyJ
    Comment by SunnyJ
    13:33 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Ill have to admit that taking away a feature isn't something that should be done without reason; but the reason they have to do it is obvious. Using this feature to attempt to hack the system and OS would make it a security risk. This will no doubtfully be part of their case. Why leave a knowingly insecure opening to your system?

    Purchasing something does not guarantee you the right to use it in any method you desire, even if it is one of the options of the program. Look at Microsoft, they took XBL from older Xbox systems, turned ~1m xbox into bricks when they disabled them for using hacked software.

    Granted, the other OS utility was nice; however, if this was the real reason you purchased a PS3, then don't patch it. You can stick with old software to run Linuz, or what have you.

    In reality, the lawyers and this guy just want money. Anything to get a quick buck.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:08 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    XBL was always a service you subscribed to, different laws cover that and there is no guarantee of future support. Hacked software is (usually) illegal by the DMCA and therefore Microsoft was within their rights and can claim that they can't be expected to write their updates around user modification. Once you start modifying the software yourself, you logically lose software support from Microsoft. You must update your own updates.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:37 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Bet on Sony.
    They will definetly have to pay a lot but it won't reach these devastating numbers.
    Law issn't THAT dumb.

    I hope...

    Avatar of Canadane
    Comment by Canadane
    09:36 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I own 4 PS3s.
    Time to get enough money to buy a 5th.

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Anonymous
    09:27 06/05/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Firstly, anyone saying that microsoft is better than sony in any way shape or form is a retard. MS just like Sony are a company that would rip you of at the first chance they get.
    As someone who does not own either a Xbox or PS3 i consider my self unbiased. Sony deserves everything it gets. No its not about Linux being useful or otherwise, its the idea that they can removed an ADVERTISED feature from their product. That should never EVER happen under any circumstances, so I hope all the PS3 bleeding hearts will shut up.
    Oh and "he does it for the money", understand you idiots that if the lawsuit is successful that money WILL NOT GO TO ONE PERSON. It will be split evenly between EVERYONE that has had to deal with the removal of the "other OS" feature. And lastly I'm not america, before someone tries to say otherwise >.>









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