A hot potato: Although Sony stopped selling movies and TV shows on the PlayStation Store over a year ago, customers could still watch content they had already purchased. However, that now seems to be changing.
According to the notifications placed on the German and Austrian versions of the PlayStation website, Sony is removing hundreds of titles from its servers, so even those who purchased the movies and shows will no longer have access to them. On August 31, Austrian customers lost 137 titles and Germany lost 317, including Apocalypse Now, John Wick, Robocop and the entire Saw series.
Sony said it had to remove the content “due to [its] evolving license agreements with content providers. “To be precise, everything distributed by Studio Canal is being canned. More likely than not, Sony has just decided to stop paying licensing fees as it is likely moving into film distribution This summons stems from the fact that the company stopped selling content in March of last year.
Streaming content providers often remove content over time for a variety of reasons, ranging from licensing issues to creating room for new shows. Subscribers to these services have accepted it since it is a monthly subscription to streaming VOD programming. However, in this case, users purchased the content digitally knowing they could watch it whenever they wanted.
Sony does not mention whether or not it will issue refunds for items from user libraries. If not, there will likely be a significant backfire. To some, deleting purchased content might seem like bait and switch – and in all practical terms, it is – but Sony’s service agreement probably indemnifies it from legal action in cases like this one. It would be unusual for lawyers for one of the entertainment industry’s most prominent players to overlook such a possibility. I’m just going to show that you should always read the fine print.