In the wake of the recent PlayStation Network shutdown (see the latest here) I’ve been reading a lot of outrage across the web from gamers crying out for immediate reimbursement/compensation from Sony. This comes from not only the gamers who frequent website forums, but also from professional gaming journalists who have diligently written editorials for major commercial websites demanding Sony “make it up to them” over the PSN being down for a few days. I’m sorry, where did this obnoxious sense of entitlement come from?
Yes, the PSN being down when Portal 2, Mortal Kombat and SOCOM 4 release is unfortunate. But did you stop to think that Sony pulled this last-ditch effort to keep your personal, sensitive information out of the hands of the hackers that seem to have no trouble breaking through Sony’s defenses? I’m not saying that we should be down on our hands and knees worshipping Sony over their bravery to pull such a drastic stunt, but Christ, we shouldn’t be shouting for heads to roll either.
Firstly, for the majority of PSN users the service is free. You pay no monthly or annual cost and you get to enjoy everything the service offers, be it demos, videos, and, of course, online multiplayer when applicable. When the PSN goes down, whether for maintenance or in a case like this, it’s no skin off your back. Yes, you miss out on playing Portal 2’s fantastic co-op, but so what? You can find something else to do for a few days. Portal 2’s multiplayer isn’t going anywhere. This isn’t a circus that’s only in town for a few days where you might miss out on that chance to have the scary clown touch you inappropriately on the knee cap. You won’t find more hardcore gamers than the guys that write about the industry here at Crave, yet we’re not pulling out our mini Kevin Butler voodoo dolls (yes, we have those) and stabbing them over and over because we can’t play Portal 2 online right now.
As for the PlayStation Plus subscribers, those folks are losing out in this scenario. They pay an annual premium for Sony’s premiere treatment and, as of right now, they can’t take advantage of it. That sucks, no doubt. However, let’s be serious, Sony will make it up to you (as well as everyone else most likely) through a free game download or something. And that should be enough, as long as you’re not an asshole. They’re not going to fix the problem and then issue a general “Sorry guys.” Sony will make every effort to keep you as a happy customer after all is said and done. They would be moronic not to. But again, that’s not really the point.
The point is that somewhere along the line gamers, and gaming journalists apparently, got an entitlement complex and are already making demands for “answers” and compensation from Sony. Protecting your identity and credit card information is not enough justification for Sony to do what they did? People, get off your high horse. This kind of behavior is to be expected from forum users (not all of them of course), but I honestly did not expect it from my professional peers. I won’t call out specific publications (you don’t even have to look hard to find them), but these editorials being published are literally just there to exploit traffic from similarly-angry gamers by creating a lobby for everyone to “Rabble, Rabble, Rabble” in with their pitchforks and torches drawn. It’s sad, really. As the saying goes, “Don’t feed the trolls.” So, thanks, for completely ignoring that one.
To reiterate, in the end Sony had few options: they could have left the PSN running at risk of more “external intrusions” so people could go about enjoying games like Portal 2 and Mortal Kombat over this long weekend unbeknownst to the security threat; or, they could shut down the PSN to completely iron out the problem, tell people in the simplest of terms what’s happening, and unfortunately leave gamers with an online gaming inconvenience. They chose the latter, obviously, but it’s clearly the more sensible option… for everyone.
And that’s where I’ll leave my soapbox rant. If you don’t agree with anything I said here, sound off below. But keep the discussion healthy please!