IGN: Sony Sued Again For Removing PS3 Linux Feature

IGN Writes: Two more class action lawsuits have been filed against Sony Computer Entertainment America for removing the 'Other OS' feature from the PlayStation 3.

The first lawsuit, filed on Wednesday, May 5 by Todd Densmore of Cumming, Ga., and Antal Herz of San Francisco, Calif., claim Sony has rendered several PlayStation 3 features they paid for "inoperable" as a result of the release of firmware 3.21. The update, released on April 1, 2010, disabled the ability to install the Linux operating system. By choosing not to update their console, users couldn't access separate, non-related features, such as signing onto PlayStation Network.

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rroded2996d ago

i got a fat 60 gigger n it was our back up pc till that update ruined it sucks large cause i paid for the feature i mean whats next no more b/c...

Double Toasted2996d ago

Thats one thing I don't condone and thats taking away something that I paid for. Whether I use it or not makes no difference, I paid for it. Companies should do a survey about this kind of stuff before taking actions because then they would be able to get an idea of what type of backlash they could expect. Even then I don't think it would help, but taking something I paid for is a no-no.

TOSgamer2996d ago

You get disagrees for saying its wrong to take some thing you paid for away. I guess those people are either thieves or cool with someone breaking into their home and stealing their stuff.

Anon19742996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

"The suit states Sony allegedly failed to disclose to customers that it reserved the right to remove advertised, built-in features."

Read the user agreement before you agree to it. If you didn't agree you could have taken your PS3 back. You can't agree to this type of thing, use the product for 3 years and then take issue with the agreement when it inconveniences you. That's not how contract law works.

"The suit also states the right to remove the 'Other OS' feature is not disclosed in Sony's Terms of Service or System Software License Agreement."

Yeah they did. Right where it says they have the right to update and remove features. Because they didn't list each, specific feature is this somehow not clear. It's obvious to anyone who read the agreement what Sony could and could not do.

Waste of the courts time in my opinion. I've said it before and I'll say it again, if Microsoft can't be held liable for knowingly releasing a defective product and then actively lying about it for over a year, duping millions of consumers what chance is there that the court's are going to rule against Sony for actively trying to PROTECT their consumers as outlined in the user agreement?

I'd love to hear how this joker is going to claim he "lost money" by not being able to connect to the PSN network as the court docs indicate.

ShinMaster2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

I don't believe Linux was advertised as a feature, unlike Blu-ray, PSN, Bluetooth, WiFi and whatnot.

If it wasn't for hackers and piracy, this feature would have remained.
So they had to do something! Stop blaming Sony so much. Blame those Linux users who use it for eeevil! :P

Besides, Sony has the right to do such things according to the Terms of Service and System Software License all PS3 owners agreed to!

Anon19742995d ago (Edited 2995d ago )

Think about this. Say Sony loses this case. What message does that send to industry?

What it says to industry is don't try. Think you have an idea for a cool feature for your console? Don't do it, because if it doesn't work you'll be sued. If this lawsuit goes ahead it will effectively curtail innovation. Company's need the ability to make changes on the go, that's why we have sections of these user agreements giving them that flexibility.

Take that away and what do you have? If I release a product and it's then hacked and pirated and I don't have the ability to make changes to the console on the fly I might as well just walk away from the billions I've invested because I don't dare make any changes to the system for fear of being sued.

These people aren't suing because they feel screwed by Sony. These people are parasites. They're launching these lawsuits not to get Linux back. If they wanted it they could just not install the update. They're doing this simply because these types of cases are usually settled out of court. They want their "Shut the hell up" money.

If this does go to court and the court somehow rules against Sony, all user agreements are out the window and we can kiss innovation goodbye. Without the ability to make changes to their systems a console will come out with one set of features and that will be it. Tinker with that and you'll get sued.

You've got to be pretty thick not to see that.

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HolyOrangeCows2996d ago

We're back to complaining about the OtherOS feature that locks off 90% of the Ps3 anyway? *YAWN*

If you were looking for a Linux machine (And were educated/informed), you would have bought a cheap laptop, not a game system.

LinuxGuru2996d ago

Speaking of being educated and informed, did you know that the PS3 has the greatest cost-effectiveness of any linux machine in the world? Researchers LOVE paying for oodles of PS3s because of how much bang for their buck they get. The PS3 is king of crunching numbers, and researchers / scientists LOVE it.

Cheap laptops, like you're speaking of, are just plain pathetically inadequate for what most PS3 linux users are doing.

ChickeyCantor2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

" Those who were using their PS3s for supercomputing purposes had absolutely no reason to MANUALLY download and upgrade the firmware for purely GAMING purposes."

Right? cause Sony started out as saying its a supercomputer.

Ach, confusing system it was meant for JJohan35

Arksine2996d ago

That is correct, and those using the PS3 for research were warned not to update prior to 3.21. People using the PS3 for HPC purposes should have no need to play games or access PSN. In fact, those PS3s probably should never even see the XMB.

But, all of these lawsuits are coming from home users claiming that they bought the PS3 for its linux capabilities, and that is just plain ridiculous. HolyOrangeCows' point is that a cheap PC can run circles around the PS3 for standard linux use. Anyone who has actually used linux on both platforms knows this.

Enigma_20992996d ago

... so why would they?

They act like they only paid for the thing for the Other OS feature... and the games were an aftersight.

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jjohan352996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

I honestly hope that all these greedy lawsuits will fall FLAT on their faces and lose in the courts. It's as if these consumers are suddenly deciding to punish the PS3 for becoming huge in the last 2 years.

Those who were using their PS3s for supercomputing purposes had absolutely no reason to MANUALLY download and upgrade the firmware that was released for purely GAMING purposes on PSN.

SprSynJn2995d ago

Here if you lose a suit, you have to not only pay for your legal fees, but the fees of the defendant. I really wish that system would be incorporated into the States. Maybe these useless human beings would not waste other people's time.

STICKzophrenic2996d ago

I completely agree.

To be honest, I didn't use OtherOS, but I paid for the feature. It's the principle of the matter.

ShinMaster2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )


Eamon2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

Of course loyal fankids and tools wouldn't care due to their ignorance and immaturity. Can't really blame them for getting angry at these lawsuits.

In the end, it's a matter of principle. I'm hoping they win just to show that even a rich supercompany cannot break the law.

And this piracy scaremongering habbit that huge cooporations have is typical propaganda aimed at ordinary consumers to get fooled by and feel sympathetic for them to cover up the fact that Sony has illegally stolen a feature that was advertised with the product.

jjohan352996d ago

It's not against the law and you weren't required to download it. If you're using Linux, you have no reason to be on PSN.

SprSynJn2995d ago

People like that will not listen. Words of wisdom do not pass through the arrogance barrier in his mind.

gtamike1232996d ago

It's to stop HACKING so stop complaining people!!!

commodore642996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

Completely agree that SOny needs to lose this case.

Honestly, I feel very sorry for all the Sony defenders who excuse Sony's linux removal blunder - it simply reeks of hardcore Sony fanboy.

The issue is thus: the courts will have to decide whether Sony's TOU is in fact legally valid.

Unfortunately for Sony, it will be proven that PS3 consumers have very little choice in this matter, and have, in fact, been misled by Sony.

In fact, if they upgrade, they lose PS3 features.
If they DON'T upgrade, they still lose PS3 features.

Who wins? Sony.
Who loses? Consumers.

Sony will need to answer why it was able to use withdrawn features to secure initial marketshare, and more importantly, why Sony was able to use withdrawn features as a viral marketing campaign.

This case is a complex one, but it stands to reason (well maybe not Sony fanboy reason) that consumers, having been misled by Sony in this matter, will not stand for it.

I expect more people to join this lawsuit and/or instigate their own, N4g Sony apologists notwithstanding!

JD_Shadow2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

Didn't Sony not have the "Install Other OS" function in the Slim models when those first came out?

I rest my case.

interrergator2995d ago

well you agree to the terms of service so thats your fault

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Teehee2996d ago

Ps3 gaming > Useless Linux feature.

-Alpha2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

PS3 Gaming> Watching Blu Ray. What if that was removed? By your logic it's justifiable. Just because you didn't use Linux doesn't mean others did not.

I understand that Sony had to do it, but you can't use that kind of argument. It's completely arrogant to assert that how you use your PS3 is how everybody else should. People bought PS3's for numerous reasons

I think the best argument lies in Sony wanting to protect their product, however it's a little unfair that everybody has to suffer for it. When MS tried to combat piracy they banned consoles that were known to have been hacked. I'm not sure if Sony can try this, but it seems like a much better way. It would have made the most people the most happy and that utilitarian approach is pretty feasible in this situation.

I can see the judgment going both ways. I've heard great arguments from both sides by guys like darkside99 and others. It's a really gray area. I don't care if Sony loses since there seems to be reasonable grounds. I just don't want them to lose to the point that the PS3's performance suffers because Sony is taking these hits. If Sony is innocent here then I'm sure they will be able to defend themselves in court.

RememberThe3572996d ago

Maybe removing the internet browser would be a better example. I for one, don't give two shits about the OtherOS removal. I never used it and never planed to use it. But if they removed the internet browser I would be pissed.

I can understand that some people are pissed off about it. But so few people used the feature I'm sure this will just blow over. I know it sucks to have features removed but if your going to blame anyone blame the pirates if they hadn't found the exploit this wouldn't have happened.

radphil2996d ago

I'm getting sick and tired of people using the whole "Remove Watching Blu Ray". That COMPLETELY negates the point of the system of not only on Movies, but you DO realize the games are Blu-Ray also.

You might as well use the analogy of "Well what if Sony just made your system only with the start up sequence", because it's just the equivalence if you use the other analogy.

-Alpha2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

357, I meant strictly movies. I know it's built in but the analogy still stands.

Radphil, I'm talking strictly movies, and the analogy works. Tell me why it doesn't. By teehee's logic it's OK to remove the feature because it's not important or as important as gaming. The fact that people will protect Sony with that kind of excuse is just unreasonable, there are better reasons such as controlling piracy. That was the purpose of Linux removal anyway.

To disregard a feature just because it wasn't used by YOU is unfair and extremely biased. Do you think that will hold as a valid reason for Sony when they get taken to court? Hell no.

If you are going to disregard my analogy then tell me why it's OK for Teehee to claim Gaming is all that matters for the PS3 as if the other features are unimportant instead of trying to twist what I mean by "Blu Ray". Linux is removed because it was used to hack. If any other feature can do the same are you saying people don't have a right to complain about it? That's nonsense.

Bodyboarder_VGamer2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

you people realize that the Wii uses dvd but doesn't play dvd movies right?

What if hackers find an exploit through the blu-ray playback? Sony's gonna remove the ability for the PS3 to play blu-ray movies too? *Of course not. Sony makes money out of the blu-ray playback but not from the Other OS, that's why they removed it without hesitation at the cost of the consumer.

BTW people should drop their fanboyism because it's clear that is turning you into a complete moron.

sikbeta2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

Alpha WTH are you talking about? there are people thinking like that, For GOD sake, they Removed OtherOS cuz that Virgin-looser was playing around and want to Screw Up Sony with "da homebrewz" crap, that only goes the Way OF PIRACY...

Sony will not take out Blu-Ray/Backward Compatibility/or any other thing cuz they can't and don't need to do it

And from the Beginning everyone had the CHOICE of Update or Not, everyone Whine about this Feature like if it was a "key" Component, but I said from the Beginning, I Prefer this situation instead of Having another PSP case.

Piracy Kill Gaming and "Pirates" don't give a fvck about that

Thanks to that geo-hot you will NEVER See the OtherOS Feature implemented and if Piracy Becomes Rampant, lets see If all the people that are whining will like to enjoy Gaming with Unified internet-based devices like On-live, forget about Physical Media, forget about Companies Pushing the Boundaries for your bucks, Graphics, Expansion Gaming Related, like Open-World/sandbox games and such...

livinwitbias2996d ago


Great point, I agree with you 100%. Some people are downplaying this because they don't use linux. I can totally see how someone that uses linux could be upset by this. People only sees things when they hit close to home.

Bubbles to you.

ShinMaster2996d ago

Apparently all of you did not read the Terms of Service and System Software License you all agreed to!

-Alpha2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )


I am talking about the bad excuse that "it wasn't important" people are using. Saying it caused piracy is a valid reason, saying Linux wasn't important isn't. Also, People who have ANY passing interest in playing online were pretty much forced to update. Don't tell me that it was people's choice as if they could have refused the update and sign in to play online. I am NOT saying that Sony broke TOS, I am saying that it's complete arrogance to say that Linux didn't matter to people. What gives you the right to say what features are important and which ones aren't to users?

You have no right to say that Linux didn't matter just because Gaming is the main use of the PS3. Playing movies isn't a main feature but people use it anyway, if it was removed for WHATEVER reason would it be fair? Well according to people like TeeHee it's ok because gaming> anything else PS3 can do. Do you see why that argument fails? You can't say that just because it wasn't important to you it wasn't important to someone else. This is like the third time I'm explaining it yet people continue to ignore the point with strawman arguments.

Nobody is saying Blu Ray will be removed, what we are saying is that acting as if a feature doesn't matter if it's removed just because you may not use it is childish. I can't believe how badly people will twist the situation. If you honestly think Sony can get away with saying that then that's asinine. A better defense is for people to realize that it can be used to pirate games, NOT that "it didn't matter". I can't believe how every little comment I make that even slightly doesn't take Sony's side gets turned into something big and completely different to what I'm actually saying.

Utilitarianism was the best approach, so why r u against it?

Biggest2996d ago

This is for Alpha-Male22 and anyone else that has a hard time grasping reality in this situation. You can not point at random "features" and make them the same as the OtherOS feature. BluRay capability isn't even a feature. It is the most necessary function of the PS3. If you can not play BluRay disks, you can not play games. What if Sony tuk ur jerbs? You can what if until you're blue in the face. What they did was lawful. What they did was justified. What they did was provoked. The lawsuits that we see now are from morons. You may not know it, but humans are greedy and opportunistic. This seems like a chance to get some free money because of all the heartache caused by Sony. Unfortunately, it won't work.
I am going to use your logic right now. BluRay capability will not get removed. It is the one way to play retail PS3 games. Everyone that purchases a PS3 knows they are purchasing a video game system. It isn't a super computer. It isn't a computer. Yes, it has other features that other people utilize. But it is what it is. A BluRay needing video game system.

badz1492996d ago

come on, BD playback is still there and I think it will stay there! how can you be so sure that even the most ridiculous PS3 fanboys won't get mad and start suing Sony if they decide to remove that feature? so, that analogy is not valid because even in term of weightage, BD playback >>> Linux on PS3!

the removal of OtherOS is unfortunate and even by me, it's in no way fair for all fat PS3 owner! but don't you ever forget that what Sony did is just trying to protect their system from being hacked! it's not fair but the ones spending millions or even billions to develop the machine is them! I still blame GeoHotz for this and that will never change!

radphil2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

@Alpha-Male22 The reason why that analogy wouldn't work, is that it would both hurt the consumer AND the company greatly. I wouldn't even think of that possibility happening, considering that the whole premise of PS3 is synonymous with Blu-Ray. That would be as if Apple removed the ability to play mp3s on an iPod, but still allow other forms of video.

It's an extreme move you're using with your analogy, which is why I felt it was wrong. Keyword extreme.

Ju2996d ago

Palease. Back to reality. The PS3 is a gaming machine, sold below manufacturing costs (for most of it's existence) with a business case of being a just that, gaming console. That business case usually includes offsetting HW operating losses (or low margins) with license costs/profits from SW sales.

So, that's how this was intended in the first place. Adding an "OtherOS" was not necessary for the operation of the console, but a free (!) and gracious feature Sony (unlike anybody before) has granted. This has never been done before specifically because of security reasons.

To not acknowledge these facts is in fact ignorant. Or say, maybe ignoring the whole console/gaming business as such and it's history.

As much as I miss the feature (in fact, that was the only way for me to learn programming the SPUs - which I miss, for sure) but it's according to Sony's policy and their right to remove - especially because it is not a required feature to operate the console for it's intended purpose.

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Elven62996d ago

You forgot to add "in my opinion", just because you didn't use the Linux feature doesn't mean others didn't.

It sucks Sony had to do it because of the hackers and all but looking at it from their position, if the PS3 was hacked it would have immeasurable effects on software sales.

TOSgamer2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

The blu-ray drive is built into the system not the ability to play blu-ray movies. Sony could easily remove the ability to play blu-ray movies just like they could remove PS2 BC.

Some of you kids are so self-centered. There are plenty of people who don't watch blu-ray movies or play ps2 games with their ps3. So is it ok to remove those as well? Removing any advertised feature to protect their company's @ss is a no-no and shouldn't be tolerated.

waltercross2996d ago

Why would Sony make it so you couldn't play Blu Ray movies though? I Know It's just your Example but a bad placed one, Many more people watch Blu Ray movies on there PS3 Then thoughs who use Linux, and from what I've heard the reason Linux was removed was because of Hackers, Though I can Imagine how this sucks for thoughs who use Linux or plan to use it on there PS3.

But Removing the Blu Ray player or the ability to watch Blu Ray movies would be a terrible move.
As for getting rid of BC, they are already gradually doing that and eventually it will be gone.

Also they aren't just protecting there @ss but the Developers, they can't simply do nothing.

badz1492996d ago

PS2 BC is not something you paid for after the PS3 dropped to $399/introduction of 40GB! Sony removed the PS2 chip and card readers and gave just 2 USB ports and sold it for $399 at the time! 60GB owners who paid premium since launch still able to play PS2 games until today! so, don't even think of bringing THAT here!

ALFAxD_CENTAURO2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

Sony knows what are the consequences if they remove something or not. They see that coming before everyone here think about it, but Sony always will win, because they are prepared for that.

They will find the best way to stop the piracy (everyone knows why Sony remove that option) and if is necessary to remove the Web Browser, they will remove it, but they will try to find another way to not remove the web browser for sure (just an example, not saying they will remove the Web browser) and prepared to consequences, but they will always win in this kind of Lawsuits.

Death2996d ago

They could easily release an update that made watching Blu-ray movies impossible. The hardware is exactly the same before and after the update. The differance is now you dont have the option to install another OS. The video blade giving you access to the Blu-ray player could be removed and the games would still be the same. If you want an example of this, try playing a DVD movie on your Wii. The drive is there and DVD games work, but you can't use it for movies without some unauthorized effort.


waltercross2996d ago

Removing Linux is WAY Different then removing the ability to watch Blu Ray Movies, It's no secret that some people buy the PS3 Just for It's Blu Ray player, That would be a bad Business move and loss of profit if the removed that ability, sure they can remove it but why would they?

ChickeyCantor2996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

" Removing Linux is WAY Different then removing the ability to watch Blu Ray Movies "
No its not, its a feature that the Ps3 does not need.
It would read Blu-ray discs just not encode the movies.

And there are also people who use Ps3- with linux exclusively.
Lots of researchers used it like that, this was also a bad business move. Cause obviously many people are pissed off right now.

Its a gaming machine remember?

Biggest2996d ago

Who uses the PS3 for research? Are any of those researchers suing Sony right now? Would those researchers even have the latest updates? Or do the researchers also need to play Fat Princess while they research?

badz1492996d ago

why don't you just wait until Sony remove it and then start flaming about it rather than just making random accusation! if the BD playback is to stay (and I'm 100% sure it will!) until Sony release the PS4, you'll realize how stupid you look right now by then! so, save it for someday else!

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Zerodin2996d ago

Backwards compatibility...oh wait.
Support for other OSes...oh wait.

PirateThom2996d ago

All PS3s are backwards compatible, PS One's library works perfectly fine.

rhood0222996d ago

My 60gig and MGS 4 80gig are both PS2 backwards compatible.

PAPERCHASER03962996d ago (Edited 2996d ago )

PS3OWNER: "Oh no Sony just made me decide whether I want to keep linux or not I never used it or thought about using but what should I do?

360OWNER: " Man Microsoft never gave us the option of linux or a web browser but I tell you what I will make a lot of noise and complain for you okay"

WII_OWNER: " Well I'm just content with my games.. I'm fine

That comes from that good ole saying " an empty wagon makes the most noise "

SQWERCH2996d ago

is a games machine, they didnt advertise it as a linux pc or a supercomputer, they wont win a thing.

morganfell2996d ago

Not to mention I am curious how many of these people suing actual used the Linux option for a legitimate purpose. Some did I am sure. But all of them?

SQWERCH2996d ago

a money grab, they saw a potential lawsuit and went for it but i dont think it will go anywhere as soon as sony proves they had to shut it down to protect their product from pirates they wont have a leg to stand on, sony has a right to protect themselves. they should be suing the hackers not Sony


It's a Computer Entertainment System (AKA PlayStation).

CR-Y-SIS2996d ago

360's Backwards compatibility...oh wait.
360's Support for other OSes...oh wait.

Bzone242996d ago

When did the 360 lose backwards compatibility?

lonix2996d ago

And removed the online function

Bzone242996d ago

I didn't lose backwards compatibility. Just wanting to know why cry-sis brought it up.

GiantEnemyCrab2995d ago (Edited 2995d ago )

360 never lost it's back compat because it is all software based. It was never %100 for all titles but it is still very much there.

And MS never offered an OtherOS function.. I would see this as MS removing the Media Center Connection functionality and it would tick me off.

I was mad at first about the removal of OtherOS but I'm over it now.. Certainly never mad enough to sue but will interesting to see where this goes. But it is funny watching the zealots actually defend losing a feature.. Corporate loyalty is blind I guess.