Sony bans PSN users from class action lawsuits

Sony has revised its Playstation Network terms of service, forcing users to accept changes that ban subscribers from bringing class action lawsuits if they wish to continue using the PlayStation 3 online gaming network.

Section 15 of the revised agreement (PDF) now reads: "Any dispute resolution proceedings, whether in arbitration or in 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, unless both you and the Sony entity which you have a dispute specifically agree to do so in writing following initiation of the arbitration. This provision does not preclude your participation as a member in a class action filed on or before August 20, 2011."

The move seeks to prevent users from bringing mass disputes against the company, such as those brought in the wake of the month-long downing of PSN after a hacking attack that led to the theft of more than 100 million subscribers' personal information, including credit card details.