Judge Blocks Sony’s TRO Motion, Geohot Safe For Now

by Mike Bendel January 14, 2011 @ 1:12 pm

Earlier this week, Sony’s legal team rushed to file a temporary restraining order against famed hacker George “Geohot” Hotz following the recent publication of his firmware 3.55 jailbreak. The motion called for the impoundment of electronic devices and related computer equipment that was used to hack the PS3.

Chalk up a win for Geohot, as US District Judge Susan Illston blocked said TRO today, noting that Hotz’s use of Twitter, PayPal, and YouTube does not establish personal jurisdiction, according to a Wired report.

But if using Twitter or Facebook is enough to bring a case to San Francisco, “the entire universe would be subject to my jurisdiction,” the judge told the Sony attorney about his argument.

Granted, Geohot isn’t in the clear yet — the judge refrained from issuing a formal ruling, noting her concerns over whether the case should be heard in California over Hotz’s home state of New Jersey. “Serious questions have been raised here,” she said, referring to Sony’s choice of jurisdiction.

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