Over the weekend it was reported that Sony had changed its customer Terms of Service to prevent class action lawsuits against the company. We can confirm that these new terms do not apply to Australia.
Last week the BBC reported that a clause had been included in PSN's new Terms of Service called the "Binding Individual Arbitration", which states that "any Dispute Resolution Proceedings, whether in arbitration or court, will be conducted only on an individual basis and not in a class or representative action or as a named or unnamed member in a class, consolidated, representative or private attorney general action".
According to the report, users would have to agree to the new Terms of Service before they can log onto their PSN account. A pop-up message appears on the screen just before they login to PSN. Those who want to opt out of the agreement can do so by sending a letter to Sony's Los Angeles headquarters in the US. Once they do, subscribers will be able to keep their right to file a class action lawsuit without any need for arbitration.
A Sony spokesperson confirmed that the Terms of Service for Australian PSN users have not changed.
"Although the Terms of Service (TOS) in the SCEE (Sony Computer Entertainment Europe) region have not been changed, in the regions where they have, this updated language is designed to benefit both the consumer and the company by ensuring that there is adequate time and procedures to resolve disputes. There is also a section of the TOS that educates users on how they can opt out of this portion of the TOS," the spokesperson said.
"As Australia is part of SCEE therefore there is no change to the TOS." [BBC]