Sony Updates Its Software Usage Terms For All PlayStation Systems, Used Games Resale Restriction?

Sony won big at E3 2013 with PlayStation 4 when Jack Tretton stated that the corporation was listening to the fans and the “NO DRM” campaign that was followed after Microsoft’s initial reveal just weeks earlier before E3 2013. In the E3 2013 conference, Jack Tretton stated that gamers will be able to buy, resell and trade used games for the PlayStation 4 just like how it was with PlayStation 3. He also stated that there won’t be any form of online verification present on the system which will force the owner to go online every 24 hours to verify that their system has not been modified in any way and after the check it will let the owner play the console offline for 24 hours.


Now some interesting bit surfaced when PlayStation UK updated their Legal terms on the site. These new terms bring our attention to two points clearly stated by Sony which hint at the possibility of DRM:

4. Software is Licensed
4.1. All Software is licensed, not sold, which means you acquire rights to use the Software, as described in these Terms, but you do not acquire ownership of the Software. If you do not comply with these Terms, we can terminate your Software Licence which means you will no longer have the right to use the Software.


7. Resale
7.1. You must not resell either Disc-based Software or Software Downloads, unless expressly authorised by us and, if the publisher is another company, additionally by the publisher.

This shows that Sony might be going back on its word and promise that it made in front of thousands of viewers. The legal terms explicitly state in the above two points that you cannot resell your owned game without acquiring permission from Sony and this extends to not only the PlayStation 4 but to all the PlayStation systems.

sony-used-gamesAlso another important piece of information found on the Legal Terms is about the monitoring of the online activity and how it can be used by Sony:

14. Are we monitoring PSN?
14.1. Yes but we can’t monitor all PSN activity and we make no commitment to do so. However, we reserve the right in our sole discretion to monitor and record any or all of your PSN activity and to remove any of your UGM at our sole discretion, without further notice to you. Your use of PSN and our community features may be recorded and collected by us or sent to us by other users as described in 13.1. Any information collected in this way, for example, your UGM, the content of your voice and text communications, video of your gameplay, the time and location of your activities, and your name, your PSN Online ID and IP address, may be used by us or our affiliated companies to enforce these Terms and the SEN Terms of Service, to comply with the law, to protect our rights and those of our licensors and users, and to protect the personal safety of our employees and users. This information may be passed to the police or other appropriate authorities. By accepting these Software Usage Terms, you expressly consent to this.

You can read these Legal Terms yourself here.

What does this all mean? Is Sony trying to go back on its word? Will Sony make it difficult to resell or trade-in used games following the launch of PlayStation 4? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.


Ali Moin

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