Does Sony Owe You Anything For The PSN Outage?

The PlayStation Network has been down for a solid two days. We don't know when it will end. All we know, in its third day, is that Sony says an "external intrusion" is responsible for the outage. All multiplayer gaming is conked. Some downloadable titles are completely unplayable. (Those good old title updates are still being served, though.) Does Sony owe anyone anything for the inconvenience?

Remember, this isn't the first time the PlayStation Network has suffered prolonged outages. Last February, a clock error in older models of the PlayStation 3 confused 2010 for a leap year and prevented users from signing into PSN. And, of course, attacks earlier this month by Anonymous succeeded in bringing down PSN intermittently, at least until Sony's security contractors figured out how to block them and Anonymous itself called off the operation.

This, however, is much more than a DDoS attack taking things out of commission for a couple of hours. We'd been told to expect an outage at least as long as a couple of days. And when PSN is down, that means access to the PlayStation Store and all multiplayer gaming are gone, and even certain titles are completely unplayable, online or offline.

Should Sony offer anything to their PSN customers? Are they even obligated to? It's tricky because, unlike Xbox Live, you can take advantage of all online multiplayer features with a free account over PSN. So for millions of users, the service most often used over PSN is "free", (or at least assumed into the retail cost of the game.) Were this Xbox Live, we'd likely be seeing free months tacked onto folks' Gold subscriptions left and right.

Maybe that should happen for subscribers to PlayStation Plus, but offering everyone a free month of that would look to some like a cynical way to hook people into the service. Not to mention existing PlayStation Plus subscribers would see some dilution of the exclusives and offers they get through the service during that freebie period.

A free downloadable game? If it's one published by SCEA, perhaps. More likely we'd see some kind of secondary offer - a movie rental or a piece of downloadable content.

Still there are some games that cannot be played at all because of DRM requiring you to log into PlayStation Network - notably Capcom's Bionic Commando Rearmed 2 and Final Fight. I own both. Should I get some kind of refund or credit to my PlayStation wallet? With more than 70 million subscribers, even a dollar credit to everyone makes this an extremely expensive gesture for Sony.

Maybe, if this really is an external intrusion, and PSN has been brought down through no fault of Sony's, maybe it doesn't feel compelled to offer anything. And maybe you don't feel they should either.

I'm curious of your feelings on this. Let us know in the comments.


    How about your money back and an enema for every idiot at Capcom who thought "HERP DERP ALWAYZ ONLYN DRM IZ GUD"?

    As for being on topic, it's a hard thing to decide, I mean, it really wouldn't affect those who aren't on a PSN Subscriber thingy, or those who are trying to play those... unfortunate DRM games... so even though some might feel like they're owed for the inconvenience, I'd say those who have PSN Plus accounts actually do have the right to feel that way, while the rest of us... well, tough titties, PSN is free for online play, so no, I dont think we should get anything (again WE being non PSN Plus subscribers)

      I put this comment here under Kyle_Katarn because I could not find the comment button.

      I don't believe for one minute that anonymous hacked the Playstation Network, nor was there an "external intrusion".

      Check this out. The GeoHotz vs. Sony case just came to a settlement. (For anyone who does not know, GeoHotz was the hacker to the Playstation 3 that brought all the Custom Firmware hacks to the Playstation.)

      Anyway, they just came to a settlement. I don't know what the settlement deal or deals were. But I have a very good idea that GeoHotz disclosed some security flaws and Sony is now trying to fix those flaws.

      Once again, I do not think the PSN being down has anything to do with an external intrusion. I believe that is just a coverup to the real reason Sony is upgrading the security on the Network.

        Lol, the reply button is right at the bottom where it says:

        "1. Guests

        Click here to comment instantly."

        I agree with you in that anonymous probably did not have their hand in it, even the... I guess you could call it official "AnonOps" group has come out saying they had no part in this. The problem with anonymous is that you just dont know. (Im not knocking it, either. Everyone has a right to anonymity.)

        So it could be a rag tag group of hackers, because the article is right, a DDoS attack does not last this long. But with all the foul play Sony has done recently (including pretty much DESTROYING everyones right to privacy), I won't not believe that it could be some form of incompetence at Sony's end.

    Yes, give me back my five day weekend of no psn, gt5 bspec driver locked to online and kz3 multi

      Yes, they owe us something. It's not about PSN is free or missing gaming time. It's about having a no secure network and us trusting them with Credit information and other personal information. Now I have to worry about identity theft and change all my passwords to be safe. This is ridiculous.

    I think Sony owes everyone atleast 1 month free membership for playstation plus or a free ps1 game off the psn (that's if it ever comes back

    Daniel Glynn-Roe

      I'm a Plus subscriber and I want the days the service has been down added to my account. It's only fair. Down for 3 days... 3 extra days added to my Plus account. Just like any other paid service this is someting I'm owed. I plan to call Sony after this is all over and ask for the days added to my account. If I don't get it then after my 3 months of Plus is up I will no longer buy Plus. Simple.

    They don't owe you anything, by taking it down they are improving the service.
    Contrary to popular belief it doesn't cost them every day its down, its actually cheaper because they aren't paying a cent right now on upkeep. People aren't runnning away to another service. The only reason its still down is because they don't want to reboot and lose traces that can catch the mofos, otherwise it would have been up already. The whole 'online only' game argument is bullshirts because PC contemporaries go down even worse (AC2 on first week)

      This is for playstationnetwork its been five days down and im bored out of my mind all my friends r in psn and i cant reach them to play. I came out of work cuz sat & sun r my day off and i have not played. Im gettin so pissed of this no schedule no email tellin us wat was goin on. If this week i dont see the psn on im sorry but ill trade in my ps3 and just go with xbox360 they r never down and they have downloadable game before ps3 does. Im not tryin to be an ass but u might lose a couple of customers with this situation just hopin im not one of them so plz info threw email all psn gamers of ur update do make us go online and find.out ourself not good

        One is no more secure than the other, just cuz PSN is having problems now doesnt mean its impossible for xbox to have the same problem now or in the future. Just my oppinion do what you like I stand by my PS3. Had xbox hate the controller, to bulky.

      It also doesent cost them very much when the service is on, other than the initial investment of the server, and routine maint. don't cost that much. I agree they don't owe anything, it would be nice though. I do support anonymous and what they stand for, just not on this because SONY had to pay money to develop the console. But information should be free. The internet was designed to be free its out there but the ISP's have all the money to put the sattelites in the sky, so you gotta pay, unless you get your own. I'm on some TRON shish Freedom of Information for All (not stealing though) "I Fight For The User."

    I had to stop my brother from trying to kill himself all because of the pan is down and he's older than me. Come on Anonymous I respect what you guys did against scientology but at least try to enable the PSN so we can play. Do it for Easter lol

    I am a PS+ member and I in know why feel they owe us anything.
    I pity the person who life can't live without online game play for a few days.

      i don't believe that Sony owes anything, they give us free gaming online. Yes it sucks when this happens but it does happen. I don't expect anything from them but if they do intend to do something for the psn users it would be a good gesture. Like I said though I don't expect them to do anything. If some users don't like what Sony does either way they could always buy a Xbox 360 and pay to play online.

        man come on hurry up solo zombies just got old no leder bourds what's the point. dount need cash need killz.

    Are you kidding me? Games like Heavy Rain not working because they couldn't complete registration of the trophy information? That is surprising. As to my opinion on this PSN outage, I always believed the PS3 a rather sophisticated machine, but now owning one and experiencing the hackers joining me in my favorite game, or the errors preventing me from going online whatsoever, like this current outage, I am no longer so convinced. It does make me think about how easily our online integrity can be compromised from so-called "hacktivists"(if that is the case), and I think that says much about Sony's commitment to PS3 customers.

    Just offer everyone a free month of Playstation Plus. For suscribers, they are owed it. For the freebies, it means they get a taste for Plus, and some might end up subscribing. Could turn into a money making gesture for Sony.

    If it's proven to be external, they owe us nothing. If it's their fault, I'm happy with an apology or a three say trial of playstation plus

      I agree. if its theyre fault the new COD map-pack would be nice but wont happen, cuz theyll have to shell out $. But I can see an SCEA title as a more logical gesture just to say sorry. Im on the fence kinda I agree with both sides objectives both SONY and the hacktivists. everybodys got an agenda. NO ONE IS RIGHT OR BETTER THAN ANYONE ELSE, SONY IS NOT ABOVE THE HACKERS AND VICE VERSA.

    Easter weekend downage is literally like sending satan back instead of our good ol boy JC on easter sunday.

    Unspeakable rage.

    Yet, worse than not being able to get my daily BC2 dose, that 30 day subscription to MUBI i bought my parents is inaccessible because it's bloody locked to my PSN!. Sony will have hell to pay if i don't receive an extra set of days on that subscription.
    I really wouldn't be concerned about getting something for the PSN outage other wise, but what really irks me is Sony's complete and utter lack of communication. "full day or two" "External intrusion".

    We're consumers, not idiots. Start treating us like it Sony.

    its all good, problems like this always happen around the world. Nothing is perfect and things need to be fixed. we built them and so we can fix them. A break from this will help lots

    Just Sony, get that network up n running.

    Yes indeed. They owe us the option to play every single game OFFLINE.

    Perhaps Anonymous might feel some obligation to help subsidise any such compensation. Oh wait, they think they are (allegedly) doing it for PSN users.

    Thanks guys.

      It wasn't Anonymous this time around.

    Well SONY doesn't owe anyone anything for the downtime -- a few days isn't going to hurt much and PS+ users can still get the same benefits (free / discounted games). Though having said that i think picking an older first party title and making it free on PSN for a short period of time would be a nice gesture and hey, it might even increase interest in the title / sell some dlc.

      you buy a ps3 to play online thats what i did switch over from pc for the very good game servers
      now i dont play singleplayer i spent 700$ on my systym and i feel like they owe me somthing if they didnt sue everybody who mods this wouldent happen
      there like nazis of the gaming world who treat us like morons they dont hardly tell u anything how could that be good p.r i know for sure we all will get somthing in return just for the credabity they lost

    Great article!!

    Capcom might bother to owe you something based on their reliance on a system they don't control. Irresponsible.

    Whoever perpetrated this "attack" might owe you something, but they haven't put their hand up.

    Sony owes you nothing but gratitude. Sure, they might have built their network with holes. But it's a free one and they are building it again. From scratch! That's impressive! Plug those holes baby!

    Looking forward to Black Opsing your arse!

      Agreed. I have confidence in Sony and the work they do. Hackers on a psudo crusade bringing down the network of millions of users is not acceptable, and they deserve a little spotlight and lawyer fee paying. There is activism, and then there is what amounts to digital terrorism. They need to tune their aim to stay on activism side.

      Ultimately, thanks to Sony for biting the bullet and making the system better in response. Its nice when a company will still be firmly behind a 5 year old product. I'm glad the downtime is amounting to something substantial to prevent it from being an issue in the future.

    Sony has a clause written into the terms and conditions that basically says "if things go bad, tough luck". I doubt anyone will get anything

    To be perfectly honest, I didn't think about Sony ever offering anything to the average (non PSN Plus) owner as compensation because, as you said, it's a free service we're getting..

    I mean, if someone promised you a lift to work every day for nothing and you became dependant on that lift, then their car is smashed in an accident and you have to take the bus, would you be expecting your 'lift' to pay for the bus fare?

    I think a small gesture would be nice, but I'm not expecting it, nor would I be upset if it doesnt come..

    If I were a PSN Plus, or owned the Capcom games on PS3 (I bought them on Xbox for this EXACT reason of online being required) then I might be singing a different tune..

    Yes they do owe me something. An apology, an explanation, and a reason for me to stay with my PS3 (notably, a way of making me believe this won't happen again). I don't expect any tangible reparation as this is probably not Sony's fault - just some dick screwing with them for attention. Well done. You got it. Let me play COD.

      You're not throwing away the ps3 your mom got you. You're gonna be playing it day 1 when its back up you dumb shit

    Sony are working there butts off 24/7 52 days a year for us to play on PSN. I think they deserve a break. So, Sony, take as long as possible to get this resolved.

    Sorry, I mean 52 weeks a year. I meant to put 365 days a year but i forgot.

    The PSN has been down for about 4-days now.. with very little explanation. But we already know that anonymous was threatened to be sued and threatened to hack the PSN sytem, so all of a sudden we are left with no online gaming.. no offline gaming, no netflix. I believe many people are going to not only be upset, but may think of switching this crappy lagging network for X box live.. at least when they go down, they have a logical reason and dont keep changing status from an error to the network is under maintenance. Maintenance my ***.. Not to mention this was a vacation week and holiday weekend for many..

    OK I didn't read the article but I read the title and thought "Shut the f**k up". Sony does not owe anyone s**t. I plan on leaving this simple so basically, if you want to pay $80AUD a year for XBox Live then be Sony's f**king guest. You agree to the Terms and Conditions on purchase and use of the Playstation and the Playstation Network and if they have a huge f**k up in there servers and they claim they are doing everything they can to fix it (which why the f**k wouldn't they be fixing it asap because f**kwits out there complain like babies) surely you can use the f**king offline modes temporarily. I own a 360 and a PS3. I bought 1 year of Xbox Live, $80AUD, and its not f**king worth it at all. There are no advantage in that $80 compared to paying nothing on the PS3, so don’t bulls**t me with that s**t. I am no fanboy, its just so f**king unethical to annoy Sony with absolute bulls**t excuses.

    Im aware it is also unethical to use this much profanity but it so f**king annoying. If you think Microsoft servers are better and you hate Sony then good riddance, nodody is preventing you from buying a 360. It’s your own stupid fault for buying a PS3 if that is the case. Sony never promised that there servers would never crash.

    My first generation PS3 is still going strong and I thank Sony for every minute I have used it, online and offline.

      Amen, brother, amen!

      thank you casual man! too all u big whinning pussies its down and sony doing everything they can to get it back up! they dont owe u shit but an apology. get some sun maybe fresh air get out of ur parents basement. u deff need to change ur tampon! ive never heard so many nerds cry in my life. u act like psn is ur life jeez get over it get ur head out ur ass and play catch with a negihbor.

      I'm sorry, but I had a large amount of trouble reading your comment due to the *'s. Also, your message would be a lot more effective had you not used certain words.

      Whilst Sony is under no obligation whatsoever to give anyone anything, it would seem logical that Sony come up with something (i.e. a week of PS+) in an attempt to keep consumers, especially given that Sony is still unsure whether or not hackers have obtained any credit card information from the hack. If so, I'd consider that quite the deterrant for most people, very bad news for Sony. Something (likely cheap, like a special theme) needs to keep this little kids from crying. It's depressing; I thought all these kids were on Nintendo WFC :\

    they definitively shouldn't, a few days is nothing maybe if it was over a week and only for paid subscriptions.
    But really is there nothing else to do, watch some tv or something its not like it doesn't hurt them to have no one using there service they would be losing money every hour its down

    I really hope the hackers that caused this get caught and punished to the full extent of the law. It sucks right now not being able to go online, but I would rather they get it fixed so this crap doesn't happen again. Please read below, this is from their user agreement when you sign in to the PSN. So here is exhibit A as to why they don't owe us anything:

    No warranty is given about the quality, functionality, availability or performance of Sony Online Services, or any content or service offered on or through Sony Online Services. All services and content are provided “AS IS” and “AS AVAILABLE” with all faults. SCEA does not warrant that the service and content will be uninterrupted, error-free or without delays. In addition to the limitations of liability in Sections 1, 2, 11 and 13 of this Agreement, SCEA expressly disclaims any implied warranty of merchantability, warranty of fitness for a particular purpose and warranty of non-infringement. SCEA assumes no liability for any inability to purchase, access, download or use any content, data or service

      It seems Sony puts Everything in their unreasonable Terms of Service; Massive lists of what you can't do, Massive lists of what legal overkill They can do, and statements saying that no matter what happens to PSN, somehow, they aren't responsible.

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