:: Under the hoodwink ::
Thursday, March 18, 2004
Some of the issues I ranted about regarding Volvo and their protective repair measures are covered in this recent Plastic post: Independent Mechanics Say That Mr. Goodwrench Is An Information Hoarding Hog.
The work that Putnam's losing is going right to the dealer's service shops, which are on distribution for all the computer codes. According to Putnam, that constitutes a monopoly and he thinks the federal government needs to get involved. Apparently, Putnam is getting his wish, because there are two bills coming up in front of Congress that address just this situation. One bill is sponsored by Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC), while the other has been introduced by Representative Joe Barton (R-TX). Both bills would require auto manufacturers to give all relevant data to the consumer when the vehicle is purchased. This will allow him or her to determine whether to get the car fixed at an independent shop or take it back to the dealer. While the bills do allow manufacturers to withhold information regarded as trade secrets, it specifies that the information that must be given to the owners include: "information necessary to integrate replacement equipment into the vehicle; and other information of any kind used to diagnose, service, repair , activate, certify, or install any motor vehicle equipment (including replacement equipment) in a motor vehicle." The Federal Trade Commission would be charged with enforcing the law.
Posted by morland @ 03:41 PM
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