After a lengthy journey through legal loopholes and import tax laws, an English court has come to the conclusion that the PS2 is not, in fact, an "automatic data processing machine". This doesn't come as a revelation to Sony but rather, a crushing disappointment in a campaign that might have netted them a hefty 63 million dollars (or 50 million Euro). Had Sony's lawyerbots managed to fool convince the powers that be of the PS2's true computer lineage, the corporation would have received a huge tax refund on import duties, as computers (real ones) didn't fall under that particular tax umbrella between 2001 and 2003.

The Court of Appeal's heroically labeled Lord Justice Chadwick wasn't best pleased by Sony's "skeleton" arguments, noting that they went "beyond what can be regarded as acceptable written advocacy" and exceeded "the bounds of propriety." If there's anything we've learned over the years, it's that one should never cross a man who wields a tiny hammer. It simply isn't a VAIOble strategy. (Sorry.)

All of this comes on the heels of Ken Kutaragi's insistence that the PS3 is "clearly a computer." It's okay, Ken. You can drop the act now. European import tax on video game consoles dropped to zero percent in 2004.

[Update 1: Clarified our amusement at the "Lord Justice" label. Surely, he must be a superhero of some sorts.]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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