The Ministry Of Sony

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The Ministry Of Sony

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It turns out that Sony's updated Terms of Service for the PlayStation Network contains language most people would find very off-putting, if they ever bothered to read the damned thing.

Sony originally updated its TOS and emailed PlayStation Network users about it on October 15, but it's taken a few days for the true import of the changes to be noticed. While many of the changes have apparently been implemented to relieve Sony of all obligation to provide refunds in the event of price reductions or account cancellations, a "Big Brother" clause in the contract is the real cause for concern.

From the new TOS:

However, SCEA reserves the right to monitor and record any online activity and communication throughout PSN and you give SCEA your express consent to monitor and record your activities. SCEA reserves the right to remove any content and communication from PSN at SCEA's sole discretion without further notice to you. Any data collected in this way, including the content of your communications, the time and location of your activities, your Online ID and IP address and other related information may be used by us to enforce this Agreement or protect the interests of SCEA, its users, or licensors. Such information may be disclosed to the appropriate authorities or agencies. Any other use is subject to the terms of the applicable Privacy Policy.

That's not all: By agreeing to the terms, users also give Sony blanket consent to share personal information it collects with unnamed "third parties." Not comfortable with that? Pack up your stuff and go home.

Third parties, including publishers may administer access to some content, including delivery, gameplay or customer service. To enable third parties to provide such access to you, we must provide them with your personal information. If you do not consent to allow us to share your personal information with third parties for the purpose of providing you with access to PSN content, you will not be able to participate in PSN.

Obviously Sony isn't going to be recording every little thing you say and do on PSN and making bi-weekly reports to the Stasi - but it could if it wanted to. More to the point, however, is Sony's claim to the right to do whatever the hell it pleases with regard to your online activities, without even having to give you a heads-up first.

Maybe it's time we all started paying a little more attention to these EULAs?

Sources: Boing Boing, Sony Insider

Permalink

1 more step in sonys quest to monopolize ur living room

wait can they see my pr0n

I hate how I never agreed to this, just because they changed it after I agreed the first time it assumes I do.

I never even got that e-mail...they only sent me a SOCOM: Confrontation promotional thingy.

I posted an alert about this yesterday...We need to do something about this...Sony has crossed a line here.

Now, ya see, this is just one more reason why SONY = FAIL in Generation 7. They could have kept their dominance over the gaming market, if only they weren't so damned greedy.

whats the big deal the same thing could be said for other sites and forums I visit


see it's not that uncommon to see that in the user agreement, and they have yet to screw over any of their members, the agreement to my knowledge is just to keep their end from being sued for one reason or another.

I believe this is also in the MS TOS (hence the use of the banhammer on file sharing in games, like Halo 3) but it "wasn't a big deal" because they didn't pull the switcheroo on us.

This is probably going to get me yelled at but...have you read The Escapist's policy?

"Themis Media collects personal information when you visit Themis Media property pages or the pages of Themis Media partners, and when you submit user information to a Themis Media site or you use Themis Media products or services. Themis Media may combine information about you that we have with information we obtain from business partners or other companies."

or this humdinger

"Themis Media does not rent, sell, or share personal information about you with other people or nonaffiliated companies except to provide products or services you've requested, when we have your permission, or to the following:

Our business development partners who provide services to Themis Media and its users, who each maintain their own privacy policies.

Advertisers and partners using aggregate anonymous data to profile our collective audience.

Third parties with whom our partners share aggregate anonymous information.

Advertising agencies, consultants, and market research companies pursuant to confidentiality agreements. These companies may use your personal information to help Themis Media communicate with you. However, these companies do not have any independent right to share this information.

Law enforcement, other government officials or third parties to comply with applicable law or legal process or to protect the personal safety of our users or the public, or if a user violates Themis Media's terms of service."

Granted, it's not as bad as Sony's big brother policy, but most people take fair amounts of liberty with their users.

http://www.themis-media.com/content/privacy

Malygris:
Obviously Sony isn't going to be recording every little thing you say and do on PSN and making bi-weekly reports to the Stasi - but it could if it wanted to.

Of course this differs from country to country, but aren't there things like laws that might void stuff like that in some places?
I'm not well-versed in the whole privacy thing, but I'm not so sure Sony can just do this worldwide.

Retodon8:

Malygris:
Obviously Sony isn't going to be recording every little thing you say and do on PSN and making bi-weekly reports to the Stasi - but it could if it wanted to.

Of course this differs from country to country, but aren't there things like laws that might void stuff like that in some places?
I'm not well-versed in the whole privacy thing, but I'm not so sure Sony can just do this worldwide.

knowing the amount of Lawyers they have (a 5 eggs more than a picnic) they can jsut re-word it slightly and say that it has to be contested under Japanese law

EULAs/TOS' are ultimately just lawyer porn literature neway. Cram as many big ambiguous & important sounding words into an unreadable document as possible & watch their mouths salivate.

Well apparently unwarrented wiretapping has worked out so well for the NSA I guess Sony wanted to jump in on that bandwagon.

L.B. Jeffries:
This is probably going to get me yelled at but...have you read The Escapist's policy?

"Themis Media collects personal information when you visit Themis Media property pages or the pages of Themis Media partners, and when you submit user information to a Themis Media site or you use Themis Media products or services. Themis Media may combine information about you that we have with information we obtain from business partners or other companies."

or this humdinger

"Themis Media does not rent, sell, or share personal information about you with other people or nonaffiliated companies except to provide products or services you've requested, when we have your permission, or to the following:

Our business development partners who provide services to Themis Media and its users, who each maintain their own privacy policies.

Advertisers and partners using aggregate anonymous data to profile our collective audience.

Third parties with whom our partners share aggregate anonymous information.

Advertising agencies, consultants, and market research companies pursuant to confidentiality agreements. These companies may use your personal information to help Themis Media communicate with you. However, these companies do not have any independent right to share this information.

Law enforcement, other government officials or third parties to comply with applicable law or legal process or to protect the personal safety of our users or the public, or if a user violates Themis Media's terms of service."

Granted, it's not as bad as Sony's big brother policy, but most people take fair amounts of liberty with their users.

http://www.themis-media.com/content/privacy

Or Facebook's or Myspace's or... etc.

darkstone:

L.B. Jeffries:
To avoid Text Wall

As L.B. Jeffries and Darkstone have shown, this is nothing new.

You sign shit like this all the time people, but people are to lazy to actually read the damn TOS and stuff.

The People who are going "They've crossed the line!" or "We have to stop this!" or "This is why I hate Sony" are completely overreacting and don't realize that the Escapist does nearly the exact same thing albiet not as "harsh" or "line crossing" as Sony's is

I highly doubt they'd be listening to your conversations or selling your Hawaiian Vacation photos at an auction, but you are using their platform which they own the rights to and you agreed to the TOS. Facebook has every right to alter your photos and put them on a commercial. You posted your Bank Robbing experience on Myspace, they have every right to give it to the FBI or CIA or whatever. It's nothing new.

People seem to jump on the "Sony Hate Bandwagon" way to quickly nowadays.

Well apparently unwarrented wiretapping has worked out so well for the NSA I guess Sony wanted to jump in on that bandwagon.

You do know that they don't need a warrant if you agree to it, right?

And you agree to the TOS. So...what was your point again?

Eventually they will have TOS which

"By entering the site, you have sold your soul to me and by Extension to Satin."

This is a standard user-agreement.

Please put a stop to all this laughable anti-Sony "news".

What's next? "Xbox360 owner says Xbox360 is better than PS3! Read all about it!"

This sort of stuff is rather par for the course with any major online service. Now lets compare it to any software agreement, even those that don't have DRM.

Rankao:
Eventually they will have TOS which

"By entering the site, you have sold your soul to me and by Extension to Satan."

Isn't that the TOS for most Porn sites?

Fuck SONY no more online for me.

harhol:
This is a standard user-agreement.

Please put a stop to all this laughable anti-Sony "news".

What's next? "Xbox360 owner says Xbox360 is better than PS3! Read all about it!"

yeah i agree, it's funny how "horrible" Sony is and how everyone must stop using Sony stuff but Microsoft, Blizzard, Facebook, Myspace and such, have similar eula and tos' but yet we don't go up in arms about it

the only difference between those groups is one of the is Japanese, the rest for the most part are american corps

cleverlymadeup:

harhol:
This is a standard user-agreement.

Please put a stop to all this laughable anti-Sony "news".

What's next? "Xbox360 owner says Xbox360 is better than PS3! Read all about it!"

yeah i agree, it's funny how "horrible" Sony is and how everyone must stop using Sony stuff but Microsoft, Blizzard, Facebook, Myspace and such, have similar eula and tos' but yet we don't go up in arms about it

the only difference between those groups is one of the is Japanese, the rest for the most part are american corps

Does anyone know what the Valve TOS agreement looks like? Valve are the most gaming friendly company on the face of the planet, and I'd hazarda guess that theirs looks pret-ty similar.

The Fanboys strike back!

Indigo_Dingo:
Does anyone know what the Valve TOS agreement looks like? Valve are the most gaming friendly company on the face of the planet, and I'd hazarda guess that theirs looks pret-ty similar.

i'd agree, tho i think steam's is probly a bit worse

don't you HAVE to authenticate steam games online to even play them? something tells me you do but where's all the hate for valve?

cleverlymadeup:

Indigo_Dingo:
Does anyone know what the Valve TOS agreement looks like? Valve are the most gaming friendly company on the face of the planet, and I'd hazarda guess that theirs looks pret-ty similar.

i'd agree, tho i think steam's is probly a bit worse

don't you HAVE to authenticate steam games online to even play them? something tells me you do but where's all the hate for valve?

Yeah, you do. Even retail versions of Half life 2 require that you be online at all times to play them. I know this cause my brother was the one who had the Steam account but wouldn't tell me the password, so I had to try to be nice to him, or when that didn't work, just put him in a headlock and make him type in the password (our relationship is kinda strained).

Basically this whole generation has been about people hating on Sony for no good reason. People complain about the lack of decent games for the Ps3 before MGS4, a year and a half after release, and yet instantly forgive the 360 for the same time period before its first decent game i.e. Gears of War. People complain that its just trying to be a home entertainment center, forgetting that the 360 was the exact same thing and just backed the wrong horse. And it seems everyone, everywhere aside from me and a select few users, seems to see Folding @ Home as either nonexistent or an actual negative attribute.

And Decoy stop being so fucking predictable and making that stupid Mars Bars line every time I post because you think I'm just being a salesman rather than commenting on something I've noticed.

cleverlymadeup:

harhol:
This is a standard user-agreement.

Please put a stop to all this laughable anti-Sony "news".

What's next? "Xbox360 owner says Xbox360 is better than PS3! Read all about it!"

yeah i agree, it's funny how "horrible" Sony is and how everyone must stop using Sony stuff but Microsoft, Blizzard, Facebook, Myspace and such, have similar eula and tos' but yet we don't go up in arms about it

the only difference between those groups is one of the is Japanese, the rest for the most part are american corps

I think what started this paticular story was Sony suddenly changing their EULA; making the bit they changed come under very harsh public scrutiny. If it had been there from the start (like most EULAs) then none of this would happen. I guess people dont like to be reminded how many liberties companies can theoretically take with their service & your infomation when you agree to their EULA/TOS. This coming after their change in the Little Big Planet EULA; again nothing unusual in itself except they changed it after releasing the EULA making the change again very public. Bad PR but no cause for alarm.

Oh, & Nationality/raceneednt be brought into it; I dont see Nintendo being brought up after all :-) All these companies are effectively multinational conglomerates anyway.

Cousin_IT:

cleverlymadeup:

harhol:
This is a standard user-agreement.

Please put a stop to all this laughable anti-Sony "news".

What's next? "Xbox360 owner says Xbox360 is better than PS3! Read all about it!"

yeah i agree, it's funny how "horrible" Sony is and how everyone must stop using Sony stuff but Microsoft, Blizzard, Facebook, Myspace and such, have similar eula and tos' but yet we don't go up in arms about it

the only difference between those groups is one of the is Japanese, the rest for the most part are american corps

I think what started this paticular story was Sony suddenly changing their EULA; making the bit they changed come under very harsh public scrutiny. If it had been there from the start (like most EULAs) then none of this would happen. I guess people dont like to be reminded how many liberties companies can theoretically take with their service & your infomation when you agree to their EULA/TOS. This coming after their change in the Little Big Planet EULA; again nothing unusual in itself except they changed it after releasing the EULA making the change again very public. Bad PR but no cause for alarm.

Oh, & Nationality/raceneednt be brought into it; I dont see Nintendo being brought up after all :-) All these companies are effectively multinational conglomerates anyway.

Does Nintendo even have, or need, a TOS agreement? What can you share or distribute over the online service?

cleverlymadeup:

Indigo_Dingo:
Does anyone know what the Valve TOS agreement looks like? Valve are the most gaming friendly company on the face of the planet, and I'd hazarda guess that theirs looks pret-ty similar.

i'd agree, tho i think steam's is probly a bit worse

don't you HAVE to authenticate steam games online to even play them? something tells me you do but where's all the hate for valve?

Valve=life

Indigo_Dingo:
Does Nintendo even have, or need, a TOS agreement? What can you share or distribute over the online service?

The Nintendo Channel does, because it has the ability to use play information to recommend games. Logging in to the channel for the first time gets you a thing that asks if you want to use this service or not.

Indigo_Dingo:

Basically this whole generation has been about people hating on Sony for no good reason. People complain about the lack of decent games for the Ps3 before MGS4, a year and a half after release, and yet instantly forgive the 360 for the same time period before its first decent game i.e. Gears of War. People complain that its just trying to be a home entertainment center, forgetting that the 360 was the exact same thing and just backed the wrong horse. And it seems everyone, everywhere aside from me and a select few users, seems to see Folding @ Home as either nonexistent or an actual negative attribute.

And Decoy stop being so fucking predictable and making that stupid Mars Bars line every time I post because you think I'm just being a salesman rather than commenting on something I've noticed.

Resistance was good... so was motor storm (like COH2,PGR3,Oblivion,and GRAW all of which came out before Gears of War on the 360).

Snickers here! Get your premium Snickers here! Snickers Provides Substantial Satisfaction!

EDIT:Gears came out in a year not a year and a half.

This stuff always happens. I do not care really since I do not do the things they're targeting.

we must provide them with your personal information.

That's just dirty business, I'm afraid. No one is advertising on PSN, so Sony probably just find it more profittable to give the option of selling contact or demographic details directly, rather than making their pretty unloyal and apathetic consumers fill out voluntary surveys.

Melaisis:

we must provide them with your personal information.

That's just dirty business, I'm afraid. No one is advertising on PSN,

Heard of Home?

Hold on. This really isn't that bad if you think about it. If you have anything to hide, why are you hiding it on PSN? The communications are largely going to be "dude, they're rushing us from the south side" or whatever. Do you think Facebook has even a remotely different policy? Or perhaps even the escapist? If you give somebody your information, unless it's the government or a bank, don't expect them to be particularly careful with it. Yes, there's a data protection act (in the U.K at least) but to be honest, what real harm can come from this? A little bit of spam in your email? Maybe? Possibly a letter to your house about a game you'll probably want to play anyway? With all the people using these systems, do you really think they're going to be even remotely bothered about messing with your information? There are other laws that protect you.

1) They can't charge your bank account without your consent.

2) Having communication removed is the same as having a post removed on the escapist, it happens, and it's usually for the betterment of the community.

3) Thinking they have some man with cheetos all over his keyboard checking up on what everbody says is ludicrous.

This is just rediculous. It's like asking a bank to have an account with them, but you don't want to tell them how much money you have.

EDIT: just saw the above dates, didn't mean to necro the thread.

Also, not a Sony fanboy at all...just studying a lot of data management issues with my degree, and the amount of paperwork involved is mindboggling and expensive, with disclaimers like these they can save themselves a lot of money.

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