Author Topic: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?  (Read 7064 times)

BridgeTroll

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #30 on: March 30, 2017, 12:07:42 PM »
The market would crucify a company that doesn't let you do this. If I couldn't go to ubreakifix or wherever and get my screen replaced or whatever broke, I wouldn't have an iPhone. If I couldn't call detroit diesel and get a service manual showing me how to service the engines in my boat, then I wouldn't have bought that boat. I wouldn't buy a car that I can't readily have serviced in the market. In theory, yes, all this stuff is legally the IP of whoever designed and copyrighted it, and yes in theory they don't legally have to share it with you. But in practice if a manufacturer ever actually did that, then think about it, their market share would go to effectively zero. Few would buy something that permanently ties you at the hip to only one service provider.

John Deere Tractors and farm equipment... Original post...

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/why-american-farmers-are-hacking-their-tractors-with-ukrainian-firmware

In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

Adam White

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #31 on: March 30, 2017, 12:16:38 PM »
I highlighted Chris' last sentence for a reason...when you use iTunes, you're essentially permanently tied at the hip to only one service provider.

Yeah - but at least you can get the phone services by more than one company. Chris's last sentence - as I understood it - was referring to buying a car that he "can't readily have serviced in the market".
“If you're going to play it out of tune, then play it out of tune properly.”

finehoe

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #32 on: March 30, 2017, 12:21:46 PM »
Yeah - but at least you can get the phone services by more than one company.

You still have to buy the Apple product.  "Service provider" in this context means what is needed to listen to your music, not who you get you phone service from.

Chris's last sentence - as I understood it - was referring to buying a car that he "can't readily have serviced in the market".

He also talked about iPhones and boat engines, so I don't think he only meant cars.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2017, 12:28:56 PM by finehoe »

Adam White

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #33 on: March 30, 2017, 12:28:01 PM »
Yeah - but at least you can get the phone services by more than one company.

You still have to buy the Apple product.

Chris's last sentence - as I understood it - was referring to buying a car that he "can't readily have serviced in the market".

He also talked about iPhones and boat engines, so I don't think he only meant cars.

I don't know what you mean by, "you still have to buy the Apple product". I own a Mac (and have owned many) and am not required to use iTunes as my media player. I also currently use a Samsung phone - and have all my music on it, a portion of which was purchased on the iTunes store. And all my music is on my Mac, which I used to transfer the files to my Samsung phone.

Yes, iTunes is the only software that works with iPhones (as far as syncing files and buying apps goes). But that's a software thing.

Chris did talk about boat engines and iPhones - he talked about servicing them. So the iTunes analogy isn't really apt (IMO).
“If you're going to play it out of tune, then play it out of tune properly.”

finehoe

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #34 on: March 30, 2017, 12:30:26 PM »
So the iTunes analogy isn't really apt (IMO).

Okay, whatever you say.

Adam White

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #35 on: March 30, 2017, 12:53:00 PM »
So the iTunes analogy isn't really apt (IMO).

Okay, whatever you say.

Cheers.
“If you're going to play it out of tune, then play it out of tune properly.”

BridgeTroll

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #36 on: April 11, 2017, 09:00:32 AM »
https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/there-are-now-11-states-considering-bills-to-protect-your-right-to-repair-electronics

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There Are Now 11 States Considering Bills to Protect Your 'Right to Repair' Electronics
Jason Koebler
Apr 10 2017, 10:56am

Lawmakers in three more states have just filed right to repair bills.

The right to repair movement is spreading. In recent weeks legislators in Iowa, Missouri, and North Carolina have introduced bills that would make it easier for you to fix your electronics, joining eight other states that introduced right-to-repair legislation earlier this year.

The bills would require manufacturers to sell replacement parts to consumers and independent repair companies and would also require them to open source diagnostic manuals. It would also give independent repair professionals the ability to bypass software locks that prevent repairs, allowing them to return a gadget back to its factory settings.

Right to repair advocates are looking at this movement as a perhaps decade-long process that will require a grassroots movement of consumers to push back against the long-entrenched repair monopolies of companies like Apple, John Deere, and video game console manufacturers.

It's heartening, then, that the bills in Iowa, Missouri, and North Carolina were introduced without the help of Repair.org, the trade organization of independent repair professionals that is pushing for these laws elsewhere. While Repair.org has been heavily involved in crafting legislation in places like New York, Massachusetts, and Nebraska, the group wasn't even aware that the movement had spread to three new states until last week.

"It came out of the blue to me," Gay Gordon-Byrne, executive director of the organization, told me. "We did nothing and they just popped up, which validates that this is an important problem for a lot of people who have been independently looking for a solution to repair monopolies."

"The fact that there were eight states that had already filed bills seems to have served as an inspiration," she added.

So far this year, tech company lobbying has killed right to repair bills in Minnesota and Nebraska; lawmakers in Tennessee have decided to defer consideration of its bill until 2018. Legislation is still pending in New York, Massachusetts, Illinois, Kansas, Wyoming, Iowa, Missouri, North Carolina, Iowa, Missouri, and North Carolina.
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #37 on: May 18, 2017, 01:29:19 PM »
https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/apple-is-lobbying-against-your-right-to-repair-iphones-new-york-state-records-confirm


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Apple Is Lobbying Against Your Right to Repair iPhones, New York State Records Confirm
Jason Koebler
May 18 2017, 8:00am
Behind the scenes, Apple is trying to kill legislation that would make it easier for normal people to fix iPhones.

Lobbying records in New York state show that Apple, Verizon, and the tech industry's largest trade organizations are opposing a bill that would make it easier for consumers and independent companies to repair your electronics.

The bill, called the "Fair Repair Act," would require electronics companies to sell replacement parts and tools to the general public, would prohibit "software locks" that restrict repairs, and in many cases would require companies to make repair guides available to the public. Apple and other tech giants have been suspected of opposing the legislation in many of the 11 states where similar bills have been introduced, but New York's robust lobbying disclosure laws have made information about which companies are hiring lobbyists and what bills they're spending money on public record.

According to New York State's Joint Commission on Public Ethics, Apple, Verizon, Toyota, the printer company Lexmark, heavy machinery company Caterpillar, phone insurance company Asurion, and medical device company Medtronic have spent money lobbying against the Fair Repair Act this year. The Consumer Technology Association, which represents thousands of electronics manufacturers, is also lobbying against the bill.


To be clear, each of the companies and trade organizations listed in this article—including Apple—lobbies on a variety of bills each year, and not all or even a majority of that money has been spent on right to repair legislation. But the records show a huge discrepancy between the political clout of large corporations lobbying against this legislation and that of their customers, who stand to benefit greatly from the bill.

Fair repair is one of just three bills Apple lobbied on in March and April

The records show that companies and organizations lobbying against right to repair legislation spent $366,634 to retain lobbyists in the state between January and April of this year. Thus far, the Digital Right to Repair Coalition—which is generally made up of independent repair shops with several employees—is the only organization publicly lobbying for the legislation. It has spent $5,042 on the effort, according to the records.

A retainer agreement between Apple and lobbying firm the Roffe Group notes that the law firm will "lobby Apple's corporate issues, including but not limited to areas of environment, tax, and retail." According to the contract, Apple pays Roffe Group $9,000 per month for its services. According to the records, fair repair (New York Senate bill 618A) is one of just three bills Apple lobbied on in March and April. The records—which as far as I can tell have not been published on a news site before—also show that Apple lobbied against similar legislation in 2016 and 2015.


As I mentioned, it's no huge secret that Apple is lobbying against right to repair. In Nebraska, for instance, the sponsor of a right to repair bill said she was visited by Apple lobbyists who told her the state would turn into a "Mecca for bad actors" if the legislation passed. But with New York's state records, we have proof that Apple's fighting against repair around the country.

The important thing to keep in mind is that supporters of the bill have been very open about why they support the legislation. Meanwhile, the companies that are lobbying against it do not ever speak publicly about why they oppose fair repair laws. Both Apple and Roffe Group did not respond to my request for more information about the company's specific position on right to repair legislation.
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #38 on: February 15, 2018, 07:43:25 AM »
https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/kzp7ny/tractor-hacking-right-to-repair

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/F8JCh0owT4w" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/F8JCh0owT4w</a>

Quote
Tractor-Hacking Farmers Are Leading a Revolt Against Big Tech's Repair Monopolies
Farmers across the country are fighting John Deere's repair monopoly—and winning.


Kyle Schwarting is a farmer by trade, and a hacker by necessity. His farm, about 20 minutes outside the city limits of Lincoln, Nebraska, is full of tractors and agricultural equipment, which he picks up in various states of repair from fellow farmers, fixes up, and resells.

“I would say what I’m doing is hacking,” Schwarting tells me, gesturing to a Windows laptop and a USB-to-tractor cable he Frankensteined himself.

The plan is to hook the laptop up to a gigantic John Deere combine, which, like all farm equipment, has become increasingly difficult to repair as companies have introduced new sensors and software into nearly every component. Schwarting has found a hacked version of John Deere’s Service Advisor software on a torrent site, which he can use to diagnose problems with the equipment and ultimately repair it. Without this software, even minor repairs will cost him thousands of dollars from a licensed John Deere repair person and more importantly, time.

“To get it on a truck is $1,000, and by the time you get it hauled somewhere and hauled back, you’re $2,000 into getting something minor fixed,” he said. “You have a real small window to get [a harvest] done in the year, and the tractor broke down. I had to find the software to be able to repair my tractor and make my customer happy and make a living.”

John Deere, Apple, Microsoft, Samsung, AT&T, Tesla, and the vast majority of big tech firms have spent the last decade monopolizing repair: “Authorized service providers” who pay money to these companies and the companies themselves are the only ones who have access to replacement parts, tools, and service manuals to fix broken machines; they are also the only ones who have software that can circumvent encryption locks that artificially prevent people like Schwarting from working on equipment. So people like Schwarting find enterprising ways around these locks by finding unauthorized versions of software or by hacking through firmware altogether.

But what started as hacking out of necessity has quickly transformed into a bonafide political movement.

Schwarting and other farmers across the country have found themselves on the front lines of the right to repair movement, the biggest people-versus-big-tech revolt in in recent memory. The goal of this movement is to ultimately get a law passed that will allow farmers, independent repair people, and average consumers to take back ownership of their tractors, their tablets, their cell phones, their air conditioners.

I met with farmers in Nebraska who are leading this movement, and the push is showing considerable momentum: 18 states are currently considering “fair repair” bills, which would require manufacturers to sell repair parts and tools to the masses, would require them to make repair manuals available to the public, and would require them to provide circumvention tools for software locks that are specifically designed to prevent third party repair.

“The Fair Repair act gives an individual the ability—you’ve always had the right—to purchase the diagnostic tools or to take their equipment somewhere local, or to try and repair the equipment yourself,” Lydia Brasch, a state senator who is sponsoring the bill in Nebraska, told me.

An exemption to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act specifically makes it legal to hack tractors for the purposes of repair. But John Deere makes farmers sign licensing agreements that limit the amount of tinkering they are supposed to do one their equipment; violating it could be considered breach of contract and farmers who do are liable to be sued.

In Nebraska, the legislation is borne out of sheer frustration and a feeling of loss of agency from farmers whose families have spent decades repairing their own equipment and have suddenly found themselves beholden to and reliant on multinational corporations with dealerships that may be located many hours from their farms and have hours- or days-long repair backlogs.

“The seat in my tractor is more complicated than the entire tractor [I grew up with],” Tom Schwarz, a fifth-generation farmer old me. “As tractors have become more high-tech, we do not have the ability to hook up a tractor to diagnose it, to repair it, or even to activate parts that we’ve already bought. There are used parts that are available, but if I put them on, the tractor won’t run” because of software activation locks.

People in other states feel the same frustrations—whether it’s an independent smartphone repair person who can’t source iPhone screens, a customer who has been forced to wait weeks to get their battery replaced by Apple, or a hospital forced to pay top-dollar for medical equipment service that’s only available through the manufacturer.

Big tech is legitimately scared that a state may pass a fair repair bill. Lobbyists from every major big tech trade organization have shown up at state hearings on the issue and have written PDF info sheets for lawmakers designed to incite fear; lobbyists from individual companies like Apple have shown up in the offices of lawmakers who support and introduce these bills, but rarely show up at the hearings themselves because they know the legislation is popular with the masses.

“The more obviously they’re arguing for their vested financial interests versus something people care about, the harder that lobbying becomes,” Nathan Proctor, director of the US PIRG’s right to repair campaign told me, referring to individual company lobbying tactics. “It’s basic strategy to send a trade group instead. They don’t want to hurt their brand so they want their way without having to pay the consequences of doing something that hurts consumers.”

The agriculture industry, as least is feeling the pressure. Earlier this month, the Association of Equipment Manufacturers and the Equipment Dealers Association—two farming industry trade groups that represent John Deere and other giants in the space—announced that its manufacturers and dealers support “commonsense repair solutions” and will voluntarily provide some of the requirements outlined in fair repair legislation.

The groups say manufacturers will provide or sell manuals and product guides and diagnostic software by model year 2021 (full details embedded below); the group continues to push hard against legislation that would allow farmers to modify their equipment, which has become popular as tech-savvy farmers and mechanics have learned to make tractors more powerful while learning to repair them.

“We said to manufacturers—if your top goal is to strike a balance that gives consumers, farmers, and ranchers the tools they’re asking for while guarding against legislation that we feel would essentially raid software and undercut a lot of intellectual property on it, you’ve got to be willing to follow through on this commitment,” Mike O’Brien, public affairs director for AEM told me. He noted that the industry does not want to see a law that includes specific regulations or requirements for manufacturers or anything that protects a farmer’s right to modify software to change tractor performance. “We’re making a good-faith effort to respond to the consumer, why is that not adequate?”

It may be too late, though. Repairing, modifying, and, yes, improving, cars, tractors, and the stuff we nominally own is an American tradition, one that a large cross section of people feel strongly about.

“It’s fundamental,” Proctor said. “If you own something, you can do what you want with it.”
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

Gunnar

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #39 on: February 17, 2018, 07:03:44 AM »

Yes, iTunes is the only software that works with iPhones (as far as syncing files and buying apps goes). But that's a software thing.

Yes, but the software is from the hardware manufacturer who also controls what kind of software you can put on your device via the app store.

I always found it irritating that if I want to copy music or movies to my iPod, I had to use itunes. In general, moving files to an Apple mobile device is not easy.

For other phones, tablets and mobile MP3 players, you either simply copied your movies or songs directly to the device via a WIFI / cable connection or copied them to an SD-card. No special software required.

As for repairs - what happens to your warranty if you do not get your iDevice repaired by Apple or an authorized repair shop ? Apple can even brick your device if you do not use "genuine" parts.

This even comes down to cables - got a USB - lightning cable for my iPad - and not an el-cheapo model - but after an iOs update the ipdad refused to let me use it since it was not "genuine".

Sure not something I would want - in general I dislike the idea of a device manufacturer trying to tell me what I can or cannot do with a device that I paid full price for. If it were heavily subsidized (e.g. Amazon tablets) then that is something else entirely, but if I pay full price it should be up to me to decide what to do with it.
I want to live in a society where people can voice unpopular opinions because I know that as a result of that, a society grows and matures...” — Hugh Hefner

Adam White

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #40 on: February 17, 2018, 01:59:43 PM »

Yes, iTunes is the only software that works with iPhones (as far as syncing files and buying apps goes). But that's a software thing.

Yes, but the software is from the hardware manufacturer who also controls what kind of software you can put on your device via the app store.

I always found it irritating that if I want to copy music or movies to my iPod, I had to use itunes. In general, moving files to an Apple mobile device is not easy.

For other phones, tablets and mobile MP3 players, you either simply copied your movies or songs directly to the device via a WIFI / cable connection or copied them to an SD-card. No special software required.

As for repairs - what happens to your warranty if you do not get your iDevice repaired by Apple or an authorized repair shop ? Apple can even brick your device if you do not use "genuine" parts.

This even comes down to cables - got a USB - lightning cable for my iPad - and not an el-cheapo model - but after an iOs update the ipdad refused to let me use it since it was not "genuine".

Sure not something I would want - in general I dislike the idea of a device manufacturer trying to tell me what I can or cannot do with a device that I paid full price for. If it were heavily subsidized (e.g. Amazon tablets) then that is something else entirely, but if I pay full price it should be up to me to decide what to do with it.

I'm not disagreeing with you. But my point to Finehoe was that I assumed Chris's initial post referred to repairing the iPhone (like the screen).

Any mobile phone ties you to some sort of ecosystem - like iOS or Android (more or less). It's kind of hard to get away from that. Same with computers - again, more or less. Ultimately, you are stuck dealing with the apps or programs that are available for the operating system you choose.

Apple is the worst, though. I just typed this on a MacBook. And I own an iPhone and an iPad. Oh, and Apple TV. So I'm an idiot.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2018, 02:10:43 PM by Adam White »
“If you're going to play it out of tune, then play it out of tune properly.”

BridgeTroll

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Re: Right to Repair... Is it Safety or something else?
« Reply #41 on: February 20, 2018, 07:55:19 AM »
Pretty cool video... iFixit...

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/tx-9LkVIdz0" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/tx-9LkVIdz0</a>

In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."