Did Sony BMG get off easily?

An interesting open thread at Freedom to Tinker is developing two competing points of view: that Sony BMG got off lightly in their settlement agreement, and that the settlement is a fair and reasonably complete redress of customer grievances.

My $0.02 is that, with the exception of some of the MediaMax provisions, the settlement does not require Sony BMG to do anything that they have not already done themselves. The recall, compensation, offer of free downloads, and stopping XCP production were all in place well before the settlement was reached.

There are some interesting links in one of the comments suggesting that the status of both SunnComm and First4Internet as continuing viable businesses may be in doubt, as they never did that much in revenue to begin with and are facing substantial liability. That is an interesting prospect.

3 Responses to “Did Sony BMG get off easily?”

  1. Saskboy Says:

    It’s pretty much inevitible that Sony BMG will get off lighter than they should. Considering the nasty dollar figures they expect from people they accuse of being pirates, the government should give them a taste of their own medicine.

  2. Aaron Says:

    ‘Did Sony BMG get off easily?’ — ‘Did the sun rise this morning?’ — ‘Is the Pacific Ocean deep?’

    What, are you kidding? If they’d gotten off any easier it would’ve had to be — well, I’m trying to come up with some sort of graphically filthy metaphor here, but it’s not happening, so just bear with me, I guess.

    Seriously, tho, they have far too much money to worry about suffering any kind of real consequences for their behavior, especially in the modern US with its ‘feel free to fuck your customers until they bleed!’ attitude toward colossal, monolithic corporations.

    As for SunnComm and First4Internet, who cares what happens to them? There’ll always be glorified script kiddies willing to run that kind of risk in exchange for the big contracts you get from companies like Sony — I wouldn’t be surprised to find them lined up twenty deep to take the place of the ones now looking like going under.

    This is why, even though it’s been a few years since I purchased CDs of music composed within the last century, I stay current on DRM circumvention and similar — in a time and place where corporations accountable to no one on Earth have the de facto right to treat their faceless consumers (such as myself) as poorly as they please, it behooves everyone to gain at least nominal skill in methods of not getting screwed.

  3. The Sony Boycott Blog » Blog Archive » Legal roundup: Canadian lawsuit drops; SonySuit.com blogger sues Sony Says:

    […] And in a real instance of putting one’s money where one’s mouth is, SonySuit.com legal blogger Mark Lyon, a law student, is opting out of the class action settlement and filing his own small claims suit against Sony BMG. (Thanks again to BoingBoing.) Considering the limited remedies provided by the settlement, which include no redress for damages caused to the computer by the installation of XCP or MediaMax, it might be worthwhile to follow Mark into small claims court. […]

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