Yoda: “Right to Repair,” Like Right to Bear Arms, Under Attack

#OSE Open Source Everything

Corporations Are Co-Opting Right-to-Repair

Increasingly, companies use a variety of tactics to block access to repair. Companies either don’t sell replacement parts, or they sell them at ridiculous markups. They don’t make repair information, such as manuals or schematics, publicly available or open-source. They manipulate the software so that if you get unauthorized repairs done, the device locks until the manufacturer unlocks it. This forces the customer to take any problem to the original manufacturers, who can charge whatever they want. This means the manufacturing companies have all the cards to decide if, when, and how much it costs to fix something.

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Phi Beta Iota: John Deere is a major player in this space, with “secret” software and a direct prohibition against farmer repair.  Eastern Europeans have been developing righteous hacks against John Deere because the farmers want them. Right to Repair should be as fundamental as Right to Bear Arms. The true cost economics case is straight-forward — companies refusing right to repair are unethical and unsustainable. The concept of Open Source Everything Engineering (OSEE) as developed by Robert David Steele is explicitly opposed to this neo-criminal misbehavior on the part of these corporations.

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