Sony and GeoHot settle out of court

| Apr 11, 2011

Sony’s lawsuit against the hacker has reached an anticlimactic resolution.

The acrimonious legal battle between Sony and George “GeoHot” Hotz has come to a sudden and unexpected conclusion. The two sides have announced that they’ve reached a settlement in the lawsuit, and while the complete terms were not (and likely won’t ever be) disclosed, Hotz has agreed to a permanent injunction that prevents him from circulating the leaked PS3 information. Both parties say that they are pleased with the outcome and look forward to putting the controversy behind them.

“Our motivation for bringing this litigation was to protect our intellectual property and our consumers,” said Sony attorney Riley Russell. “We believe this settlement and the permanent injunction achieve this goal.”

“It was never my intention to cause any users trouble or to make piracy easier,” said Hotz, “I’m happy to have the litigation behind me.”

The principle agreement was reached on March 31


, which means that Sony and GeoHot had already come to terms before Anonymous declared war on Sony. It’s consequently unlikely that last week’s attacks affected the outcome of the case, and Sony was quick to point out that Hotz was not involved in the assault on the PlayStation Network and other Sony websites.

“We appreciate Mr. Hotz’s willingness to address the legal issues involved in this case and work with us to quickly bring this matter to an early resolution,” added Russell.

And yes, it is a bit jarring to see the two sides being so cordial after so many bitter words were exchanged.

Of course, the swift settlement doesn’t come as a huge surprise – despite the posturing, most people would prefer not to be in court – but it doesn’t really resolve the piracy/copyright issues that were at the heart of the lawsuit, so I honestly don’t know where we go from here. The permanent injunction pretty much guarantees that Hotz’s PS3 jailbreaking days are over (he’d be in a highly actionable position), but there will always be other people willing to test legal precedent and until there are clearer guidelines it’ll only a matter of time before another lawsuit steals the spotlight.

Source: PlayStation Blog

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