Sony Computer Entertainment America, Inc. v. Hotz
SCEA v. Hotz was a lawsuit in the United States by Sony Computer Entertainment of America against George Hotz and associates of the group fail0verflow for jailbreaking and reverse engineering the PlayStation 3.
On January 11, 2011, Sony sued Hotz, Hector Martin Cantero, Sven Peter and Does 1 through 100, purportedly including members of fail0verflow on 8 claims, including violation of the DMCA, computer fraud, and copyright infringement. The law firm used by Sony is Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP. In response to the suit, Carnegie Mellon University professor David S. Touretzky mirrored Hotz's writings and issued a statement supporting that Hotz's publication is within his right to free speech.
On January 27, 2011, Sony's request for a temporary restraining order (TRO) was granted by the US District Court for the Northern District of California. This forbade him from distributing the jailbreak, helping or encouraging others to jailbreak, and distributing information they've learned during the creation of the jailbreak. It also ordered him to turn over computers and storage media used in the creation of the jailbreak to Sony's lawyers. Professor Touretzky's mirror was voluntarily censored following issue of the TRO, but Hotz's writings and software have been mirrored elsewhere.
On March 6, 2011, the court issued an approval that Sony's lawyers were allowed access to all the IP addresses of all the people who visited geohot's blog for the purposes of establishing jurisdiction. Sony said the server logs would demonstrate that many of those who downloaded Hotz’s hack reside in Northern California — thus making San Francisco a proper venue for the case.
On April 11, 2011, it was revealed that Hotz and Sony had reached a settlement out of court. This included a permanent injunction against Hotz doing any more hacking work on any Sony products. to prevent any future firmwares from being decrypted. The claims (filed in United States district court for Northern California, San Francisco):
- Violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act ( )
- Violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act ( )
- Contributory copyright infringement ( )
- Violating California Comprehensive Computer Data Access and Fraud Act (§ 502)
- Breach of Contract (related to the PlayStation Network User Agreement)
- Tortious interference
Alleged Anonymous attacks in response to lawsuit
The activist group Anonymous announced their intent to attack Sony websites in response to Sony's lawsuit and, specifically due to Sony's gaining access to the IP addresses of all the people who visited geohot's blog, terming it an 'offensive against free speech and internet freedom'. The attack would be a form of Hacktivism. Although Anonymous admitted responsibility to subsequent attacks on the Sony websites, much speculation has arisen concerning a sustained collapse of the PlayStation Network in April 2011. Anonymous has denied any involvement in the PlayStation Network outage. However, Sony announced on May 4, 2011, "We discovered that the intruders had planted a file on one of our Sony Online Entertainment servers named “Anonymous” with the words “We are Legion.”
- Electronic Frontier Foundation
- George Hotz
- Illegal number
- Strategic lawsuit against public participation
- Forum shopping
- 46 DC EA D3 17 FE 45 D8 09 23 EB 97 E4 95 64 10 D4 CD B2 C2, by Ben S., Yale Law and Technology, 2011 Mar 1, yalelawtech.org retrieved 2011 3 5
- Sony follows up, officially sues Geohot and fail0verflow over PS3 jailbreak. Nilay Patel, Engadget (2011-01-12). Retrieved on 2011-02-16.
- Lawyers: Cahn, Gilliland, Smith, Gaudreau, and Bricker
- David S. Touretzky (11 Jan 2011). "Mirror of GeoHot's PS3 Jailbreak". Carnegie Mellon University. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
- Court grants Sony's temporary restraining order against Geohot, PS3 jailbreak still available everywhere. Engadget (2011-01-27). Retrieved on 2011-02-16.
- keys open doors. Wdnqg3ehh3hvalpe.tor2web.org (2011-01-26). Retrieved on 2011-02-16.
- "GeoHot Rap Song against Sony".
- Reisinger, Don (2011-02-22). "Geohot starts blog, raises cash for legal fees | The Digital Home - CNET News". News.cnet.com. Retrieved 2011-06-10.
- Kravets, David (March 4, 2011). "Judge Lets Sony Unmask Visitors to PS3-Jailbreaking Site". Wired.
- "Sony/Hotz settlement details surface".
- "Sony and PlayStation 3 jailbreaker George Hotz settle out of court".
- "Sony complaint" (PDF). eff.org.
- "Hacker group targets sony executives -children".
- "Anonymous hackers hit Playstation-Sony websites in revenge lawsuit". Daily Mail. London. April 6, 2011.
- "Hackers deny involvement in PlayStation Network outage".
- "Sony's Response to the U.S. House of Representatives".