Life imitates the Castle

The Sydney Morning Herald reports

The High Court Computer games enthusiasts are free to modify their Playstations to run cheap games bought overseas or online, following a landmark High Court ruling.

The court found that “mod-chips”- used to override technology that prevents consoles running games not purchased in Australia – are legal.

The decision follows a four-year battle between Eddy Stevens, a Sydney mod-chip supplier based in a backyard at Kensington, and the electronics giant Sony, which claimed the chips were overriding its copyright protection technology.

Kim Weatherall has the serious commentary on the decision
and here, but I’m struck by how similar this case is to the plot of The Castle. In the original case in the Federal Court Eddy Stevens represented himself and this was his defence:

Mr Stevens denied that he had supplied and installed chips in PlayStation consoles at any time after March 2001, when s116A had come into force. He acknowledged that he supplied and installed a considerable volume of chips for PlayStation consoles before March 2001, but claimed that any chipping of consoles thereafter was done by his flatmate, whom he reluctantly identified as “Ted”.

Fortunately for Eddy Stevens the ACCC stepped in as an amicus curiae with a better argument and he won the case, then lost on an appeal and now has won in the High Court.


  1. #1 Wilbur
    October 12, 2005

    Oddly enough, I keep my games console in *(wait for it….)* The Pool Room.

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