Geohot vs Sony: what it means for the iPhone and iPad Jailbreak community
For those who haven't been following it, iPhone Jailbreaker George Holtz (Geohot) is being sued by Sony for hacking their PS3. It's not new for companies to take action against hackers. Every time Apple updates iOS they try to close Jailbreak exploits and they even lobbied the US government to try and make sure Jailbreaking wasn't granted a DMCA exception (Apple didn't get their way and jailbreaking was given an exception.
While Apple went after the entire process and asked it be ruled illegal, Sony is going after one person in particular, George Hotz. After recently releasing his 3.55 jailbreak for Playstation 3 users, Sony rewarded his efforts by applying for a TRO (temporary restraining order), which was recently granted. As they continue to go back and forth, Geohot has issued a statement to Sony on his own webpage.
Note to Sony:
It's apparent you don't care about your reputation with consumers, and I can almost understand your point there. Few people consider buying a TV or laptop a moral choice, and the consumer base is quite large. But talented developers are in much shorter supply, and take it from one personally, who you choose to code for is much more of a moral choice. The programmers you will one day be looking to hire are the ones reading the tech news sites right now.
And they will remember.
I'm not sure what this means for iOS users at this point. If Sony succeeds in their case against Geohot, it's unclear what if any precedents will be set in terms of other companies suing Jailbreakers. Also, whether or not Geohot will remain an active part of the jailbreak community is uncertain. Seeing as jailbreaking iOS is not illegal, I can't image he would abandon both communities. One thing is clear, the case will definitely be interesting to follow. If Sony gets their way, will that lead to Apple starting a fire with our very own jailbreak community again? Or has Apple mellowed and Sony taken the lead in anti-community action? Sound off in the comments!