Right To Repair

Advocates warn that draft trade deal undermines Right to Repair

Right to repair

Hands fixing a computer
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A wide-ranging group of organizations that support Right to Repair, including PIRG, sent a letter to the Biden administration raising concerns that draft language from a new trade deal, if enacted, would undermine pro-repair legislation. 

The letter, delivered on September 11, specifically noted language in the draft Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) that is intended to prevent participating governments from requiring access to “source code” or “algorithms” is so broad, it could interfere with requirements of Right to Repair legislation, which has passed in a number of U.S. states. 

The proposed definition of an algorithm is “a defined sequence of steps, taken to solve a problem or obtain a result.” This definition could include diagnostic software, or even repair instructions, and could interfere with requirements that manufacturers share all necessary repair materials. 

The full list of signers is the American Economic Liberties Project, Center for Democracy & Technology, Consumer Reports, Farm Action, iFixit, National Farmers Union, The Repair Association, Public Knowledge, and U.S. PIRG. A full copy of the letter is available here.

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