geohot offers to work for them and help them build something that's actually secure, they sue him for "extortion". beautiful.
The import and creation of automatic weapons in the US is restricted to law enforcement and military. Mere POSSESSION of an unregistered automatic weapon is a felony offense. The two cases are completely unrelated.
Jailbreaking a PS3 is equivalent to jailbreaking a phone, with the possible exception that doing so may be a violation of DMCA, since it theoretically enables the copying of DVD/BDVD/games.
Sony probably has the upper hand legally here. The DMCA seems to be pretty explicit about these kind of this, at least from my non-lawyerly reading of it. Even so, this is quite unprecedented. Apple and Nintendo have both had devices hacked, often by these same people (there's at least two iPhone Dev-Team members there, four members of Team Twiizers, and, of course, geohot), but they never took any kind of legal action.
(Somewhat unrelated, but funny: even Nintendo found out "bushing"'s real name and phone number. I wonder why Sony didn't go through that trouble and referred to him pseudonymously.)
IANAL, but there are a few things that Sony has going against them: 1) The DMCA interoperability exemptions may apply to this work, although obviously not the piracy side of things (although these guys have not produced anything that is for the sole purpose of copying content), and 2) They are conflating these attacks purely with piracy, which will make their case look far worse when a judge looks at it. Whether or not these things actually matter in the end is up in the air, but this is by no means a cut and dry case. I'm personally excited to see this come to pass, for the precedent this could set, and I hope for the best for bushing et al.
Edit: This is the type of tweet that can lose a case... "The FAIL0VERFLOW Defendants intentionally circumvented SCEA’s TPMs, accessed the PS3 System and trafficked in Circumvention Devices and SCEA’s proprietary information,
with full knowledge that their unlawful conduct would irreparably harm SCEA. Indeed, five days prior to appearing at the Chaos Conference, Bushing echoed a fellow hacker’s comment anticipating this irreparable harm: “Last chance to sell any Sony stock you may have.”"
In this case decided in 2005, Sony received over $6 million in a copyright infringement judgment against a small online retailer who violated the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), 17 U.S.C. §§ 1201 et seq., by selling computer chips that allowed unauthorized copies of PlayStation games to be played on the PlayStation console.
Unlike with PS2&3, where for a while there Sony pretty much endorsed alternative uses of the console.
Also, there was the official Net Yaroze system - which had similar restrictions to ps3 Linux - no cd data, and no good access to the GPU: http://jum.pdroms.de/PSX/psxdevstart.html
(Yes, suing over piracy is not new, and that's what Sony is doing here. But that doesn't change the fact that none of them support piracy.)
Bringing a legal action like this just raises the public awareness to the hack (not good for Sony). It pisses more hackers off (not good for Sony) and it doesn't fix what seems to be an unfixable problem for Sony.
I'm sure the courts will be made aware that Sony removed a "key" feature/selling point of a console and left consumers with little choice about how to re-enable that feature.
Anyway, Geohot shouldn't have been such an egomaniac, the keys/tools could have been leaked online anonymously and he wouldn't be in legal trouble. Still, I can see an out of court settlement of some kind on the horizon...
Sony's ineffectual attempts to lock down the PSP (starting with the last-minute homebrew policy reversal) probably contributed to the firmware hacking community's fervor. However, after the rampant piracy on the PSP platform, I think Sony is going to take any firmware hacks very seriously. Gamers have proven to be perfectly willing to pirate games if given the opportunity.
If I were them I'd fix that first. And get rid of the ridiculous and outdated blu-ray crap. Spinny disc things? In this day and age?
Apple sues clone maker Psystar: http://tinyurl.com/6r7jad
I.e. they are only quite as long as people keep buying their hardware, and got nothing to do with "pissing hackers off".
While I would be fine with being banned from their network, I believe the hardware should be mine to do with as I please - with the obvious exclusion of piracy. If I want to get Linux on there, then that should be my right as the owner of the hardware - same if I want to run custom firmware to allow me to do hobby development. Both their supposed right to unleash a ban wave, as well as their lawsuit against Geohot et al just doesn't make sense - why can a lawsuit like this even be allowed to happen? (This question is linked to the fact that Geohot purposely did not add peek/poke functionality on what he released to ensure that piracy would not be possible using his tools - even if others have since added that in)
I'm a fair man; let's do some checking. Here's one:
"an illegal system in which criminals threaten to harm you or your property if you do not give them money"
How strange; it's not remote close to what you literally read as a dictionary definition.
I've checked other dictionaries too; same story. Here's an idea; why not open up this magical dictionary you have and see what it says under the word "literally".
A) I and my colleagues illegally broke into your thing ("harm you and your property"),
B) and you had better hire me to fix your thing ("give them money"), or
C) we'll probably do it again next time ("threaten").
I'm not sure what the source of our disagreement is.
I disagree that your fire department remark from above is a correct way of thinking about the situation, because the fire department does not start fires, nor do they charge for leaflets. What makes it seem like extortion is not primarily that geohot is offering to secure their console. It's that he's offering to be paid to do so in the next breath after helping to exploit their console.
I suggest that in exchange for being paid, he will not help crack the PS4.
(I don't actually think that was the spirit of his remark, of course, but it probably is literally true that if Sony hired him, he would likely not help crack the PS4, while as it stands, he may well do so.)
In case you struggle to draw the analogy here, in this case we have Geohot, who knows a lot about how to do something Sony really want to do, offering to help them do it. That's not extortion.
If you call that extortion, then presumably when the fire department sends out leaflets on how to prevent fires, you call that extortion too.
This is called "customer involvement", not extortion.
I think there is some moral greyness to buying an essentially subsidized console with no intention to buy games -- though now that they probably make a profit on the hardware, that point is moot.
They're probably enabling it in some cases -- the US military has built clusters with thousands of PS3s. I doubt they procured those through Best Buy.
*By unlocked I mean "homebrew unlocked" and without the ability to play games.