Today I received a copyright infringement notice from Sony’s lawyers, asking me to remove a file we’re hosting here at wololo.net.
The file is a zip containing an old version of CTurt’s open source PS4 SDK, of which the original can be found on github here, and has been there for years now.
I’m pretty convinced (note: not a lawyer!) that CTurt’s work does not consist in copyright infringement. However what’s much more interesting to me is that this does not seem to be the work that Sony actually are after.
Instead, it appears Sony have launched a witch hunt against a recently leaked version of their (official) PS4 SDK, a leak from a team named KromeMods.
A few other scene websites including playstationhax have received bogus DMCA complaints. Playstationhax had to take down an article reporting on the leak. The PlaystationHax article was not linking to any copyrighted material, and yet they have been asked to take down their article that was merely talking about the leak. We, here, at wololo.net, have been asked to remove a file that is not connected to that copyrighted material, but shares a similar name.
In other words, Sony’s lawyers are visibly doing some broad keyword search and blasting website owners and internet providers with takedown notices for everything that remotely looks like it might be related to the copyrighted file. Hey, that’s cost effective I guess, more than actually confirming if actual copyright infringement happened or not on the sites.
Of course, some sites where the leaked SDK was actually being distributed, including mediafire, have taken down the infringing file. Scene websites that were distributing the file have either removed their links or made their articles visible to members only. Again, we at wololo.net didn’t even discuss that PS4 SDK leak until today, let alone distribute it.
For now, I have decided to not take down CTurt’s SDK. I replied to Sony’s lawyers that they made a mistake with their takedown request for the files we host. Obviously, I do not have the intent to fight a long legal battle if they insist, and I might have to remove CTurt’s files from our server, even though that would be a collateral victim of some unrelated battle.
For reference, Sony’s Lawyers’ statement below (because the best way to fight abusive take down requests is to make them public):
Dear Sir or Madam:
Irdeto USA, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as “Irdeto") swears under penalty of perjury that Sony Interactive Entertainment America LLC (hereinafter referred to as “SIEA") has authorized Irdeto to act as its non-exclusive agent for copyright infringement notification. Irdeto’s search of the URL listed below has detected infringements of SIEA’s copyright interests on your website as detailed in the below report.
Irdeto has reasonable good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of in the below report is not authorized by SIEA, its agents, or the law. The information provided herein is accurate to the best of our knowledge. Therefore, this letter is an official notification to effect removal of the detected infringement listed in the below report. The below documentation specifies the exact location of the infringement.
We hereby request that you immediately remove or block access to the infringing material, as specified in the copyright laws, and insure the user refrains from using or sharing with others unauthorized SIEA materials in the future (see, 17 U.S.C. 512).
Further, we believe that the entire Internet community benefits when these matters are resolved cooperatively. We urge you to take immediate action to stop this infringing activity. We appreciate your efforts toward this common goal. [note from wololo: I urge you to double check actual infrginement before sending bogus dmca complaints, this would in return increase the probability of cooperation]
Please send us a prompt response indicating the actions you have taken to resolve this matter, making sure to reference the Notice ID number above in your response. [link removed]
Note: If your email program has inserted line breaks into the e-mail link above, you can copy and paste the entire link into your email program.
Nothing in this letter shall serve as a waiver of any rights or remedies of SIEA with respect to the alleged infringement, all of which are expressly reserved. Should you need to contact me, I may be reached at the below address.
Note: The information transmitted in this Notice is intended only for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential and/or privileged material. Any review, reproduction, retransmission, dissemination or other use of, or taking of any action in reliance upon, this information by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. If you received this in error, please contact the sender and delete the material from all computers.
This infringement notice contains an XML tag that can be used to automate the processing of this data. If you would like more information on how to use this tag please contact Irdeto.