In a federal class action lawsuit filed in the San Francisco court Friday
, thousands of Sony PlayStation 3 video game owners who downloaded a required software update claim that instead of helping the system run better, the update caused their system to crash -- and actually damaged hardware in some cases. Sony first released the update, called "Firmware 3.0," in September, claiming it would add "a number of great new features," none of which included complete system failure.
The lawsuit also claims that game owners who experienced damaged hardware then had to pay Sony a $150 fee to get it fixed (that would be 600 quarters, for those who came of age during the golden age of arcade games). But wait, there's more: The lawsuit alleges that, in response to complaints about the faulty update, Sony released yet another update claiming to "improve system stability," which promptly crashed a different system instead.
The lead plaintiff in the case, Florida-based John Kennedy, claims he
Sony PlayStation 3 unit in January 2009 (they run from $300 to $600
each, according to court docs), installed the update
in September, and before he could experience the "years of enjoyment"
with his console promised by the company, ran into the aforementioned
problems. The lawsuit alleges that Sony is aware of the problems with
the updates but refuses to acknowledge them, let alone fix them.
Plaintiffs are asking for more than $5 million to cover damages.
SF Weekly is currently awaiting a response to the allegations
from Sony. Stay tuned. Whether putting a Kennedy at the forefront of a
case against Sony will make a difference or not has yet to be determined; the plaintiffs have decidedly asked what their videogame system can do for them, not what they can do for their videogame system.