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Ken Kutaragi and Sony finally admits to the folly that has been… itself

Ryan Block, @ryan
Ken Kutaragi

Stop the presses.

Maybe it was Sony's new year's resolution to say, "I'm sorry." We don't know, but Sony, you are so seriously getting back on the right track. First you start supporting MP3s in your digital audio players, then you're about (slowly) increasingly more affordable prices, then you're murmuring about opening up UMD (we won't hold our breath). And now you're allowing Ken Kutaragi (aka "The Father of PlayStation", and prez of Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc.) to just come out and fess up to everything we've seen going wrong with Sony in the last decade: the total lack of cooperation between Sony divisions, Sony's entertainment division dictating the direction of Sony's electronics divisions, and their overarching obsession with having control of consumer standards (all of which are directly correlated to an internal fight over content rights, of course—we touched on this before with an insider at Sony).

This is huge. Though we?re not sure why Kutaragi was the one and only Sony exec who stood in front of the cameras and publicly apologized for Sony?s seemingly ceaseless stream of mishaps, but we?re not exactly going to argue the points he brings to the table. Especially the part where he called Sony?s ?original spirit of innovative technology? ?diluted?, or when he said, ?We have to concentrate on our original nature ? challenging and creating.? We couldn?t possibly have said it better ourselves. And though he made it very clear that upper-management at Sony (i.e. his drinking buddies) have a lot of soul-searching to do to turn things around, he said ?It?s just starting. We are growing up.? If Ken was here, we?d give him a big hug and buy him a tall beer.

To be true to our inner cynics, we?re not really going to believe this until we see some top Sony boys take a nice, long trip to America to feel things out and really try to understand the US consumer base?but the honorable Kutaragi standing in front of hundreds of press to publicly humble himself is, believe it or not, about the best start to healing the deep, gangrenous wounds of Sony as we can possibly imagine. We?re not saying we expect to see SD slots in new Sony CyberShots later this year or anything, but if ever Sony?s future outlook was bright, it?s certainly now. Now please excuse us as we pick up our jaws from the floor and go back to drooling over that new VAIO FS laptop.

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