The new clause comes after the hacking of PlayStation Network (PSN) earlier this year, where the service was down for over a month and credit card details of users were said to have been stolen. The amendment called the ‘Binding Individual Arbitration” means that users are restricted when it comes to suing Sony over security breaches in the future. Gamers will not be able to sue Sony collectively but only on an individual basis.
Users will have to go through an arbitrator, picked by Sony, to try solve the matter before being able to file a lawsuit against Sony.
The new clause states:
“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”
When users log in the the new terms and conditions are brought up in small print. However there have been questions raised about how many people will have read the terms and noticed the changes before clicking the Accept button.
If users don’t want to waive their right to sue collectively then they can write to Sony and opt out. If that is done then they will keep their right but will still ultimately have to sign the new agreement in order to play online.
A collective lawsuit against Sony over the earlier hacking and stealing of credit card details could cost Sony billions and this new amendment covers their back in the future. 77 million gamers details were stolen at that time.
PSN is the PS3′s online network where you can play games online, chat with friends, download games and much more. There are currently estimated to be 100 million users of PSN all over the world.