Sony Hits Snag in PS3 Hacker Court Case

January 14, 2011 -

Wired reports that Sony's lawsuit against PlayStation 3 hacker George Hotz hit a snag today when a federal court judge questioned whether California was the right jurisdiction to hear the case.

Sony sued Hotz on Tuesday, alleging that when Hotz posted the code to crack the PlayStation 3, he breached the Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s anti-circumvention provisions. Sony asked the court to compel Hotz to remove any code he uploaded last week.

U.S. District Judge Susan Illston said she had concerns about whether or not the lawsuit should be tried in her courtroom. She also wondered if New Jersey, Hotz' home state, would be a better venue to try the case - after all, this was where Hotz' conducted most of his internet activities.

"I’m really worried about the jurisdictional question," the judge said from the bench during a 20-minute hearing - reports Wired.

Attorney James Gilliland Jr., representing Sony, argued the case should proceed in San Francisco because Hotz posted the hack using Twitter and YouTube, and that he had received donations via PayPal. Hotz’ attorney denied the allegation that he ever received donations.

By that logic, the judge countered, "the entire universe would be subject to my jurisdiction."

Gilliland countered that the PlayStation 3's terms-of-service agreement requires that all legal disputes be settled in federal court in California.

"Serious questions have been raised here," the judge said, adding that she would rule at a later date.

We'll continue to follow this story as it develops.


Comments

Re: Sony Hits Snag in PS3 Hacker Court Case

The PlayStation Network agreement stipulates this.  That's the entire basis for the jurisdiction argument, as I understand it.  This has absolutely nothing to do with the PSN.  Hotz didn't use any PSN code in his hack, and he doesn't even have a PSN account.  He never would have agreed to those terms at any point.  Sony is full of shit on this one, though that's not surprising.

Re: Sony Hits Snag in PS3 Hacker Court Case

Strange, I didn't know that corporations could dictate to judges whether they should be trying a case or not through paperwork the judge wasn't even aware existed. I thought it was about the jurisdiction under law, not what the Corporation wants, that defined these things?

Re: Sony Hits Snag in PS3 Hacker Court Case

My thoughts exactly. I can understand that clause in the user agreement working in Sony's Defense when someone sues sony, but how could it possibly work in favor of sony sueing someone else.

Sounds like a clause the RIAA would use to prevent poor people from being able to travel to mount a defense.

Re: Sony Hits Snag in PS3 Hacker Court Case

Part of the case probably concerns a breach of the EULA, and the jurisdiction clause contained within it would apply; and might allow Sony to make the claim in that jurisdiction. Essentially both parties have agreed to resolve any dispute in a particular jurisdction in the contract itself.

However, the claim under the DMCA would not be affected by the jurisdiction clause and that may be why the judge is nervous over taking that claim wihtout proof as to her jurisdiction in the matter.

Gus

Re: Sony Hits Snag in PS3 Hacker Court Case

I wasn't aware that the RIAA could do that, even though it makes sense.

 - W

Consumer responsibility is just as important as Corporate responsibility. So, be responsible consumers.

Re: Sony Hits Snag in PS3 Hacker Court Case

I can't say for sure that the RIAA lawyers have done this, they just came to mind, but it is a well known legal strategy, and it's been used LOTS.

You live in New York

Someone you want to Sue lives in Australia.

You sue them in the state of new york, knowing they cannot come to defend themselves.

 
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PHX Corp@Adam802 We'll break out the popcorn in June12/19/2014 - 9:23pm
ZippyDSMleeMaskedPixelante: I'm itching to start it too but I will wait till the patch goes live. >>12/19/2014 - 7:52pm
Adam802Leland Yee and Jackson get trial date: http://sfbay.ca/2014/12/18/leland-yee-keith-jackson-get-trial-date/12/19/2014 - 5:24pm
MaskedPixelanteNevermind. Turns out when they said "the patch is now live", they meant "it's still in beta".12/19/2014 - 5:07pm
MaskedPixelanteSo I bought Dark Souls PC, and it's forcing me to log into GFWL. Did I miss something?12/19/2014 - 5:00pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/12/republicans-may-have-plan-to-save-internet-providers-from-utility-rules/ this is intreasting. congress may put net nutrality in to law to avoid title 2 classification12/19/2014 - 2:45pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://www.polygon.com/2014/12/19/7421953/bullshit-cards-against-humanity-donated-250k-sunlight-foundation I have to admit I like the choice o organization. congrats to CAH.12/19/2014 - 1:51pm
E. Zachary KnightIf you are downloading a copy in order to bypass the DRM, then you are legally in the wrong. Ethically, if you bought the game, it doesn't matter where you download it in the future.12/19/2014 - 12:06pm
InfophileEZK: Certainly better that way, though not foolproof. Makes me think though: does it count as piracy if you download a game you already paid for, just not from the place you paid for it at? Ethically, I'd say no, but legally, probably yes.12/19/2014 - 11:20am
ZippyDSMleeAnd I still spent 200$ in the last month on steam/GOG stuff sales get me nearly every time ><12/19/2014 - 10:55am
ZippyDSMleeMaskedPixelante:And this is why I'm a one legged bandit.12/19/2014 - 10:51am
ZippyDSMleeE. Zachary Knight: I buy what I can as long as I can get cracks for it...then again it I could have gotton Lords of the Fallen for 30 with DLC I would have ><12/19/2014 - 10:50am
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.joystiq.com/2014/12/19/marvel-vs-capcom-origins-leaving-online-storefronts-soon/ Speaking of "last chance to buy", Marvel vs. Capcom Origins is getting delisted from all major storefronts. Behold the wonders of the all digital future.12/19/2014 - 9:59am
MaskedPixelanteSeriously, the so-called "Last Chance" sale was up to 80% off, while this one time only return sale goes for a flat 85% off with a 90% off upgrade if you buy the whole catalogue.12/19/2014 - 9:37am
E. Zachary KnightInfophile, Tha is why I buy only DRM-free games.12/19/2014 - 9:37am
MaskedPixelanteNordic is back on GOG for one weekend only. And at 85% off no less, which is kind of a slap in the face to people who paid more during the "NORDIC IS LEAVING FOREVER BUY NOW OR FOREVER HOLD YOUR PEACE" sale, but whatever...12/19/2014 - 9:28am
InfophileRe PHX's link: This is one of the reasons the digital revolution isn't all it's cracked up to be. There's also the flip side where Sony can block access to games you've bought if they ban your account for unrelated reasons. All power is theirs.12/19/2014 - 8:52am
MaskedPixelantehttp://uplay.ubi.com/#!/en-US/events/uplay-15-days You can win FREE GAMES FOR A YEAR! Unfortunately, they're Ubisoft games.12/18/2014 - 6:29pm
Papa MidnightAh, so it was downtime. I've been seeing post appear in my RSS feed, but I was unable to access GamePolitics today across several ISPs.12/18/2014 - 6:06pm
james_fudgeSorry for the downtime today, folks.12/18/2014 - 5:54pm
 

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