Sony Changed ToS Because of AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion Decision

September 21, 2011 -

You may think the unprecedented and massive security breach that took down multiple Sony services including Sony Online entertainment and PlayStation Network is what pushed Sony to make the changes it did recently to the PSN Terms of Service, but a CNN report points to another reason: The Supreme Court. Last week Sony changed the document for PlayStation Network asking customers to give up their rights to file class-action lawsuits against the company and its partners. As we noted earlier today, customers can opt out by sending the company a letter in the mail - we also noted that most people did not notice the new clause in the TOS, and probably don't give a whit that they are losing their rights to sue.

Sony tells CNN that the new changes were made because of a Supreme Court decision in April - AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion (PDF). Due to a Supreme Court ruling the company was allowed to enforce a clause it included in employment contracts that barred workers from bringing class-action suits and forced them to go through arbitration.

"The Supreme Court recently ruled in the AT&T case that language like this is enforceable," a spokeswoman for Sony's PlayStation unit wrote in an e-mail to CNN. "The updated language in the TOS is designed to benefit both the consumer and the company by ensuring that there is adequate time and procedures to resolve disputes."

As the CNN report points out arbiters are usually retired judges who collect ridiculous fees of $300 or more hour. Arbitration never involves a jury and arbiters are typically more sympathetic to the corporations.

As we noted earlier, it will be interesting to see if someone, somewhere challenges the revised ToS in a court room. Many legal experts do not believe it can stand up in a court of law - mostly because of the way Sony made consumers aware of it.

Source: CNN


Comments

Re: Sony Changed ToS Because of AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion ...

Here's a good article that shows how far that decision reaches: http://redtape.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2011/09/21/7863184-after-high-court-ruling-firms-divide-and-conquer-in-consumer-cases

Its way bigger then just Sony.

Re: Sony Changed ToS Because of AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion ...

"We did it because now it looks like we can get away with it."

Fixed.

Re: Sony Changed ToS Because of AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion ...

Sounds about right.

Though luckily, even after the SCOTUS case there are limits to how many rights you can sign away, esp if you are not an employie.  Sony might find itself in the hot seat yet.

Re: Sony Changed ToS Because of AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion ...

Excuse me if I call bullshit on the notion that this somehow benefits the consumer.

This is all about big corporations doing whatever the hell the want, whenever the hell they want, with the explicit blessing of the Supremely Bought Court of the United States.

 
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IronPatriotBut hey, you're welcome.05/29/2015 - 5:23am
Andrew EisenEZK did say he didn't find any info on the appeals process. And if all he did was look at the ratings process part of the ESRB's website, he wouldn't have. That's where I would have looked too. But hey, thanks for being thorough and finding the info.05/29/2015 - 5:01am
Andrew EisenDude, again. I am NOT saying there is no appeals process. THERE OBVIOUSLY IS. All I am saying is that the appeals process is not described in the ratings process part of the ESRB's website.05/29/2015 - 4:59am
IronPatriotI googled appeal esrb.org and it is the first and third hits. Second is esrb talking about appeals for web publishers. Gamefaqs is fourth.05/29/2015 - 4:01am
IronPatriotZachary said he did not find any information about a formal appeals process. I did a simple search and found two places on the esrb site with the info. Just sayin.05/29/2015 - 3:57am
IronPatriotOn Google I get "1 Written Testimony of Patricia E. Vance President ... - ESRB" http://www.esrb.org/about/news/downloads/pvtestimony_6_14_06.pdf05/29/2015 - 3:55am
Andrew EisenNow, that post on GameFAQs was made four years ago. It appears the ESRB has since moved the appeals process stuff behind the publisher login on its website.05/29/2015 - 3:32am
Andrew EisenOh, third link on the Google search. Okay. That leads to a GameFAQs message board which quotes a section of the ESRB website that includes a description of the appeals process. But when you follow the link, that quote doesn't exist.05/29/2015 - 3:30am
Andrew EisenThird link down from what? Look, I'm not arguing the existance of an appeals process. There obviously is one. I was merely noting that it's odd that it isn't described on the website's ratings process section but it is on the mobile site.05/29/2015 - 3:25am
IronPatriotOK, so use the third link down, which describes the appeals process and is not on the mobile site"Publishers also have the ability to appeal an ESRB rating assignment to an Appeals Board, which is made up of publishers, retailers and other professionals."05/29/2015 - 2:47am
Andrew EisenRight, which links to the ESRB's mobile site. On the website (again, unless I'm overlooking it) the appeals process is locked behind the publisher login.05/29/2015 - 2:37am
IronPatriotHuh? Google "appeals esrb". It is the first link. Click it. No login requested.05/29/2015 - 2:31am
Andrew EisenInteresting. It's on the mobile site but unless I'm overlooking it, I don't see it under the Ratings Process on the web site. It is under the publishers section but you can't access it without a login.05/29/2015 - 2:13am
IronPatriot"Publishers also have the ability to appeal an ESRB rating assignment to an Appeals Board made up of publishers, retailers and other professionals. " Esrb05/29/2015 - 2:01am
IronPatriotZachary, did you look on the esrb site? The esrb appeals process pops up when you search "esrb appeals" http://m.esrb.org/faq_09.php05/29/2015 - 2:00am
Andrew EisenThe humor reminds me a lot of Axe Cop.05/29/2015 - 1:37am
WymorenceOh sweet god, Kung Fury is freaking awesome...05/28/2015 - 10:03pm
E. Zachary KnightWonder, I know you can revise content and resubmit it, but I can't findany information about a formal appeals process.05/28/2015 - 7:27pm
Wonderkarpever wonder if there's an appeals process for AO?05/28/2015 - 6:55pm
Matthew WilsonDanny and Andy play the first couple of levels of the upcoming Hatred http://www.gamespot.com/videos/hatred-gamespot-plays/2300-6425016/ imho it does not look like it should be AO.05/28/2015 - 5:57pm
 

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