Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
code, jailbreaking, ps3, retrieving

Judge Admits She Was Wrong To Order Playstation Jailbreaker To 'Retrieve' Code From Elsewhere

from the good-for-her dept

A few weeks ago, we noted the problem of judges who don't understand technology in highlighting how the judge in the case concerning the Sony PS3 jailbreak had ordered that George Hotz (Geohot) "retrieve" the jailbreak code that had been distributed. As we pointed out, you can't retrieve code that out's there on the internet. It's not a physical good. The comments on our original article had some claims from some of our usual critics, claiming that our statement that the judge had asked for the impossible was "FUD" and not accurate, and even accused me of intentionally misleading readers here.

Well, it appears that the judge has reconsidered, and actually agrees with me and apologized for the original order:
The judge also backed off on an order that Hotz "retrieve" the code from anybody who he may have forwarded it to.

"It's information. It can't be retrieved. It's just not practical," Illston said. "What would they do, Xerox it and mail it back?"

Illston said she changed her mind because she was not clearly aware of the details in her earlier order.

"This kind of got away from me and I apologize for that," she said from the bench.
That said, the article does still highlight how she has allowed Sony to comb through Hotz's computers looking for any information "that relates to the hacking of the PlayStation." Hotz's lawyers had protested this, and the judge said that it's standard to search through the entire contents of someone's computer to find things like child porn, to which his lawyer noted that "we're certainly not dealing with child pornography," but the judge didn't bite. Despite concerns from Hotz's lawyer, the judge told them "That's the breaks."

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  1. identicon
    John Doe, 11 Feb 2011 @ 10:56am

    Sa wat?

    Since when does a non-law enforcement entity get to do searches? Is that legal? I cannot see any legitimate reason where a private person/organization gets to search another persons/organizations computer. Who is to say that what they "found" on the computer wasn't planted?

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