Should we have a right to repair our iPhones?
Part of the the right to repair movement, see this article by Joanita Wibowo for RN Breakfast, 30 November 2016.
I quote here parts (edited). It is totally in line with what I could write or have written myself. A video I made about some Apple products is in the pipeline.
The topic is also detailed in my book Toxic Capitalism, where I give several examples and attack the throw-away culture and the effect on our planet.
More about the right to repair movement
‘Right to Repair’ movement pushes back against manufacturers, 30 November 2016:
While many electronic have become more affordable to purchase in recent years, on the flipside many electronics are getting harder and more expensive to fix.
Manufacturers often restrict repair information to so-called ‘authorized repair centers’ leaving consumers with little option but to pay top-dollar for repairs.
Electronics might be cheaper than ever before, but they’re also harder to fix.
Manufacturers often restrict repair information to so-called “authorized repair centers”, leaving owners with little option to pay top-dollar or buy a replacement.
But now a community of like-minded activists is fighting back, trying to ensure that consumers have a “right to repair”. We’re the ones who own the goods, after all.
Manufacturers say: “Well, if you have any problems, you have to just go and buy another one.”
In other words, go and waste more.
The problem of e-waste
This is exactly the argument in my book.
See here one the many examples in my book, electronic starter units for TL lamps that have a lifetime of less than one year and then the complete set must be trashed. Chinese rubbish products. (Electronic ballasts employ transistors to change the supply frequency into high-frequency AC while also regulating the current flow in the lamp.)
According to right to repair advocates, our throw-away culture not only limits consumers’ rights, but harms the environment.
Electronics in particular are not very recyclable, so even if you take your electronics to recycler that can process electronics, they’re only able to get a few of the elements back.
The industry, however, is not sympathetic. As companies continue their efforts to make products unrepairable, the right to repair movement tries to find new loopholes and ways to mend electronics. It is actually getting worse, as we see with Apple products.
Many in the movement getting government on side as their best hope. In Sweden, for example, consumers are given tax breaks for having their electronics repaired in order to reduce waste.