Vote YES on 1
Eight years ago, Massachusetts voters passed a ballot measure that required car manufacturers to share diagnostics data with independent auto-repair shops. The rationale was that if car manufacturers were the only ones with access to a given car’s data, consumers would be left with no choice but to go to dealer shops for repairs. That’s what “Right to Repair” laws aim to do: level the playing field in order to ensure fair competition.
Now, Question 1 on the November ballot — another “Right to Repair” initiative — seeks to expand the previous law to account for new wireless technology. While the advocates for and against the ballot measure have flooded Massachusetts voters with misinformation and exaggerated claims through multi-million dollar ad campaigns, the right path forward for Massachusetts is to vote yes.
The reason the new Right to Repair measure should pass is simple: It is inherently unfair for car manufacturers to have sole access to a vehicle’s mechanical data, because it gives their dealerships an advantage over independent auto-repair shops. That ultimately hurts consumers, because with limited options come higher prices. Giving car owners and lessees the ability to choose who has access to their vehicle data allows them to repair their cars wherever they please, whether that be at the car dealership, the closest Jiffy Lube, or their local independent auto-repair shop.
~ Boston Globe Media Partners, LLC