Sony Updates its Terms of Service Adding Class Arbitration Waiver


As reported by WIRED, Sony recently revised its online Terms of Service and User Agreement. The move was prompted by the multiple security breaches of earlier this year in which hackers stole data from nearly 75 million Sony PlayStation customers.

Section 15 of the revised agreement includes an arbitration clause with a class action waiver provision. Sony, however, provides for a right to op-out of the binding arbitration and class action waiver if customers follow the notification procedure stated within the provision. Here is part of the arbitration clause:

Class Action Waiver. 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, UNLESS BOTH YOU AND THE SONY ENTITY WITH 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.

Will the new arbitration clause (which spans across three pages) pass judicial scrutiny? Let us know your thoughts.

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