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Right to repair may come federally

Right to repair may be coming at the federal level – Bloomberg is reporting that President Biden will shortly be directing the Federal Trade Commission to draft regulations for empowering consumers.     Farmers are expected to be the primary beneficiary, but the phone manufacturers are a possible target.  

Also on the legal front, multiple US states have filed an antitrust suit against Google around the App store, alleging monopoly power.  This is the fourth antitrust lawsuit filed against Google by the US government in the past year.  

Launching today is a campaign by the Communication Workers of America focused on three requirements to the broadband portion of the infrastructure package – prohibiting companies from interfering with union organizing who get federal funding, banning use of federal funds to hire subcontractors, and requiring companies to pay a prevailing wage.   

While I’m on policy, Newsweek has a piece on the funding for cybersecurity in law enforcement and asks the question – how is funding of police departments linked to cybersecurity, when internal priorities, including officers, cars, and weapons are competing for resources.

Why do we care?

Thematically, regulation is coming.

In many ways, the trend here is to protect the small.     Right to repair protects consumers, anti-trust protects small developers, and the union campaign is about protecting workers from the large broadband companies.

And that leaves the question… how do we finance that security?    

I apply a lens of “protect people, not companies” in my thinking.   It seems to align with the actions being taken.