PS3 players still signing away their rights to privacy
Avid Bitterwallet reader Chris has been in touch about the new Playstation Network agreement that was recently sent to owners. PS3 users have to agree to the terms in order to have access to the Playstation Network, but Chris isn't too keen on the new terms:
"The new Playstation Network agreement gives them the right to eavesdrop on any communications going through your PS3. So in other words, they could log absolutely anything you do on your PS3 from messaging another user through to web browsing and beyond."
Sounds overly sinister. Perhaps Chris is overstating the matter? Nah. Here are the terms in question, as found in the Playstation Network agreement:
"Unless otherwise required by applicable law, there is no requirement or expectation that SCEA will monitor or record any activity on Sony Online Services, including communications, although SCEA reserves the right to do so and you hereby give SCEA your express consent to monitor and record your activities and communications. SCEA reserves the right to remove any content and communication from Sony Online Services at SCEA's sole discretion without notice.
"SCEA may use any data it collects, including the content of your communications, the time and location of your activities, your Online ID and IP address and any other collectable data, to enforce this Agreement or protect the interests of SCEA, Sony Online Services users or SCEA's licensors. Such information may be disclosed to appropriate authorities or agencies."
Of course, you can still play on your PS3 without using the Playstation Network - the downside is that you'll not be able to play online games and you'll lose all access to new game patches - Chris provides Fallout: New Vegas as an example of why they're really quite important.
Interestingly, despite there been lots of noise about this over the past couple of days, it's nothing new; PS3 players have been signing away their right to privacy for years.