Service Industry Association (SIA) Launches Digital Right to Repair Coalition

by Jenn Cano on February 4, 2013
SIA logo

Contact:  Claudia J. Betzner, Exec. Dir.
619 221 9200 or cbetzner@servicenetwork.org

SAN  DIEGO, CA February 1, 2013 –

Imagine if you bought a car, and then your local mechanic couldn’t fix it because the manufacturer blocked access to diagnostic software;  updates to engine timing software; refused to sell service parts; sealed the engine compartment;  and then held the keys. This is exactly what has happened to the same equipment housed in different frames called computers. 

“Everyone with a digital product is facing increasing restrictions on repair”, says Claudia Betzner, Executive Director of the Service Industry Association. “This isn’t just a problem for computer repair, but for consumers as owners of such things as cell phones, TV, major appliances, e-readers and even automobiles. The mission of our Digital Right to Repair Coalition is to update the underlying Copyright law that is being used against consumers so that everyone has the right to repair whatever they purchased.” (See www.digitalrighttorepair.org).  We invite you to be a part of this by signing the petition.

Ms. Betzner explains that restrictions of repair access to the digital elements of vehicles are at the heart of recent successful Automotive Right to Repair legislation in Massachusetts.  (see www.massrighttorepair.com) Today’s vehicles are filled with digital technology. Auto manufacturers have sought to prevent independent mechanics from working on vehicles by blocking access to the tools, parts, diagnostic routines, and software updates all of which are critical to digital repair.  Consumers overwhelming supported  (86%) legislation that guarantees them the right to choose from repair outside the dealer, including self-repair. The same applies to any gadget with the same type of parts.

“The stakes are very high for everyone”, says Betzner, “Without the option to repair equipment outside the “Dealer” network, owners of equipment will be forced into new purchases at the whim of the manufacturer, be forced to pay higher prices for repair, and be forced to accept marginal service if such service is even available.”  It is also pointed out that if digital parts cannot be repaired, then the entire machine becomes e-waste. 

The Service Industry Association (SIA), a non-profit association of enterprises involved in the support of high-technology products.  SIA promotes customer choices, “we will continue to be the customer advocacy association looking out for the end-users interest around the globe..  For more info on SIA go to www.servicenetwork.org.

 

Topics: digital right to repair, Ownership Rights, Technology News

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