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Right to Repair reaches California

March 14, 2018

The contentious Bill is soon to be introduced to the Golden State, as it looks to follow others’ lead.

California lawmaker Susan Talamantes Eggman is set to introduce the Right to Repair Act into the USA’s most technological state, home to some of the biggest technology corporations worldwide. If the Bill is passed, California will become the 18th American state to make it law, and will make it easier for people to repair their own devices.

Currently, should a device break, users must face the possibility of long waits for repair from manufacturers’ official facilities, or use an unauthorised kiosk which doesn’t have legal access to official parts.

Under the Right of Repair Act, however, technology corporations are obliged to release official repair guides and parts to consumers and third-party professionals, and place diagnostic information into the hands of independent repair shops – or the user themselves.

Historically, such legislation hasn’t been received well by the biggest technology manufacturers, with Apple warning that Nebraska would be turned into a “mecca for hackers” when the Act was passed there.

However, Engadget believes the Act brings multiple benefits, including the reduction of e-waste, as users are less likely to dispose of items because they are unfixable. The website also argues that “it encourages people to be more adventurous when it comes to fixing their own devices, which could give rise to new innovators and inventors.”

The Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Senior Staff Attorney, Kit Walsh, said the Bill was “critical to protect independent repair shops and a competitive market for repair, which means better service and lower prices. It also helps preserve the right of individual device owners to understand and fix their own property. We should encourage people to take things apart and learn from them. After all, that’s how many of today’s most successful innovators got started.”

 

Categories : Around the Industry

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