Sony Computer Entertainment America and the hacker who published code that unlocked the PlayStation 3's firmware have reached a settlement in their months-long legal battle.
Sony had filed suit against George Hotz, aka GeoHot, who published code on his web site that allowed a PS3 console to run non-Sony operating systems and as a consequence, play pirated games. Sony accused Hotz of violating its copyright and terms of service.
Hotz's attorneys argued that the courts in California didn't have the jurisdiction to prosecute a suit. In addition, many argued that Hotz was simply restoring a functionality that had existed in previous iterations of the Sony firmware. The question of the court's jurisdiction is still pending.
The settlement enjoins Hotz from reverse engineering any Sony product, or using any tools, hardware or software to get around the authentication systems. Nor is he allowed to distribute any information, tools or software that would allow anyone else to do the same thing. If he violates the order then he will be fined $10,000 for each violation.
The parties had reached an agreement in principle on March 31. Since then they had also agreed to the protocols for searching through Hotz's equipment. The settlement order was filed today.
Hotz's legal battle with Sony inspired the hacktivist group Anonymous to attack Sony's web sites and later to plan protests scheduled for April 16 at Sony stores.
Sony Computer Entertainment America's general counsel, Reilly Russell, did not return calls seeking comment, nor did Stewart Kellar, Hotz's attorney.