The Daily Decrypt
The Right to Repair Movement: Security and Environmental Implications with HGF

Dive into the heart of the Right to Repair movement with our latest discussion on Oregon’s groundbreaking legislation, Apple’s unexpected endorsement, and the broader implications for consumers, the environment, and local economies. Discover the balancing act between advancing consumer rights and addressing manufacturers’ concerns, from intellectual property to safety and innovation. Unveil the multifaceted arguments shaping the future of our digital world, with insights from, Engadget, TechXlore, Built In, and PIRG.

00:00 Welcome to the Daily Decrypt: Exploring Right to Repair

00:49 The Rise of Right to Repair Legislation

02:19 Apple’s Repair Monopoly and Its Impact

03:25 The Environmental Toll of Planned Obsolescence

10:07 Navigating the World of E-Waste Recycling

13:48 The Business of Recycling: A Closer Look

18:50 Security Concerns in the Right to Repair Movement

22:44 Looking Ahead: The Future of Right to Repair

26:34 Wrapping Up: The Importance of Supporting Right to Repair

Tags: Right to Repair, Oregon legislation, consumer rights, environmental sustainability, electronic waste, Apple, repairability, local economies, tech industry, consumer empowerment

Search Phrases:

  • Oregon Right to Repair law details
  • How does Right to Repair affect consumer rights?
  • Environmental benefits of Right to Repair
  • Apple’s stance on Right to Repair
  • Impact of Right to Repair on local businesses
  • Right to Repair and electronic waste reduction
  • Latest Right to Repair legislation updates
  • Right to Repair movement and tech industry
  • Consumer empowerment through Right to Repair
  • Understanding Oregon’s Right to Repair bill


Right to Repair

offsetkeyz: Welcome back to the Daily Decrypt. Today we’re joined by the Trash Queen, the Solid Waste Savant, Hot Girl Farmer. As we discuss the right to repair movement and planned

hgf: obsolescence,

offsetkeyz: planned obsolescence, and it’s impact not only on tech and small businesses but also on the environment itself. Hot Girl Farmer. Spends a lot of her time working with landfills and trash and solid waste and really knows the impact that it has on the environment.

hgf: This is one of our favorite topics as the intersection between environmental sustainability efforts and tech, and Apple’s one of the biggest offenders with this problem of e waste.

offsetkeyz: So to kick things off, in the last week of March of 2024, Oregon passed a right to repair bill, which is the first of its kind because it prohibits hardware and software pairing, which basically means that the software on a device can’t require very specific pieces of hardware. It must now allow for similar components and not be that restrictive in order to allow for devices to be repaired and ultimately

their lifespan.

hgf: Organ

offsetkeyz: has joined states like California, New York, Colorado, and Minnesota

hgf: Making a

offsetkeyz: notable shift in consumer protection laws, California’s Right to Repair Act signed into law by Governor Newsom stands out for its strength and potential impact aiming to expand consumers and independent repair shops access to materials and information needed for repairing electronics and appliances.

California’s law is set to take effect in July of 2024 where Oregon’s that was just passed a couple weeks ago is set to take effect at the beginning of 2025. So new devices created after I think January 1st of 2025 will now be required to allow third party hardware and not be blocked by software locks.

The law also requires manufacturers to provide maintenance guides so that

user of the devices can maintain them themselves, as well as parts for sale. So this whole bill is kind of aimed around Apple because they’re notorious for being the only providers of repairs for their products.

You can’t go to a third party manufacturer. business and get your iPhone repaired or your MacBook. You’re lucky if you can put new sticks of RAM in your MacBook. So this limits

the opportunity for small businesses to pop up as iPhone repair stores or anything along those lines, which stifles our economy and sort of creates a monopoly for Apple.

It also really shortens the lifespan of these devices. For example, if your screen cracks, you must now take it to Apple. to get a new screen and they can charge whatever they want. And that might cost as much as a new iPhone. So you’re going to end up taking your cracked iPhone and selling it on Facebook marketplace for 50 bucks or just throwing it in the trash and going and getting a new iPhone.

And that is maybe convenient if you have the means, but it’s really bad for our environment.

hgf: Yeah, e waste has been a huge problem and we’re talking about it more and seeing more of the data in recent years.

But yeah, basically, if it’s as expensive to repair an iPhone as to get a new one, why would anyone get it fixed? They really create this model of, with the new upgrades every year, and the way that the product kind of degrades, like the battery gets worse pretty quickly. Basically these products are clearly designed to be tossed every couple years.

offsetkeyz: It’s honestly in Apple’s best interest if the consumer throws away the iPhone every two

years because

then they buy a new one every two years. If, if anyone can repair their iPhone or MacBook, that’s less iPhones and MacBooks being sold. So, Apple has been on board with previous right to repair movements, like the one in California they fully supported, but this Oregon one is much more restrictive.

Like we had mentioned, it’s the first one that. definitely understand wanting control of your product, to control the consumer experience and not wanting that to be modified by a third party And

I think that’s part of the reason why Apple’s brand is so popular

hgf: in the U. S. and is like, artistically

offsetkeyz: Very true

I personally was an android user up until

2016 I think

I like the customizability of Android where you can change everything. The icons, you can do whatever. But for about four years, my Androids were dying every nine months. Like I couldn’t get him a hold of charge forever.

And all my iPhone friends. iPhones would hold a charge for multiple years, so I was like, okay, heck, let’s go for it. Then I got into cybersecurity, and whether or not it’s real or fake, they felt like they valued privacy and security as a company.

And of the reasons is that they control the manufacturing from the top down. They control the making of the chips, they do all of it. They make the screens, they make the body, they make the software to work specifically with their hardware.

And only recently has that gotten a little out of control to where they pair your operating system with the hardware in your specific device. So if you had a friend with the exact same iPhone model, you couldn’t swap any components between the two phones because your phone literally would stop working.

It wouldn’t work anymore because it’s paired with the software, which is kind of ingenious to maintain that control. But I Feel a little conflicted about the right to repair. I like that Apple maintains control from top to bottom. That way I know nothing’s being manipulated with. You know, none of the parts are coming from A random warehouse in China that hasn’t been certified by Apple. That way they’re able to control the specific updates, hardware and software, and there’s a lot of security features that I really like about that process, but

hgf: Yeah, me too.

offsetkeyz: it is becoming more and more apparent that there are ways to maintain security while also increasing the lifespan of these devices and allowing for third parties to repair.

hgf: I don’t know much about, like, the Apple Store experience. I’ve maybe been in twice, honestly. I think I get a lot of my products online, but likely is staff to prepare

your device?

Like, do they have technicians in there that can repair your phone?

offsetkeyz: That’s a good point, which I was shocked to find out while doing research for this, that one of Apple’s main Profits is from offering insurance on their devices.

And since they’re the only people that can maintain devices, they can charge whatever they want. So it’s called AppleCare and you’re often pitched it via push notifications on your iPhone or your Mac book or in the store. And it’s what, like 200 or 12 a month. It’s like a full on. subscription fee

hgf: so that

offsetkeyz: you can go to the Apple store and then pay additional fees to get it repaired.

It’s just to lock in lower fees, like it’s not actually protecting your device.

hgf: Yeah, that always confused me. I haven’t done

it And,

offsetkeyz: part of their model is confusion. You’re paying this 200 in hopes that your repairs will be free like most insurance, but it’s not.

That’s where Apple makes a lot of its money. Tons of money. That being said, to answer Hot Girl Farmer’s initial question, the repair experience at an Apple store is terrible. Every other experience in an Apple store is magical. Well, unless you go in there to buy a Bose headset, there’s no cash registers. So it’s a little hard to flag someone down, but otherwise, you know, I bought my Mac book there and they transferred everything over.

They charged it up. They did a little tour for me. I had like my own little personal concierge person walking me through that.

hgf: a curated experience. Everything in there looks really nice. I’m just really minimalist, So the repair process.

offsetkeyz: Right. Yeah. The, the whole repair process, and I don’t think anyone will argue that because they have a monopoly on it, they haven’t put much focus there.

So booking an appointment, they ask all kinds of questions and then they have to then take your device for days and maybe they repair it and maybe they just give you a new one.

hgf: Have you ever subscribed to AppleCare?

offsetkeyz: I have and I believe I am a current subscriber to apple care for my airpods.

hgf: Um

offsetkeyz: I’ve had Two pairs of AirPods die, like just unable to be charged. And the first pair was one day after the normal warranty. It was literally the day after my warranty expired. So I went in and I couldn’t exchange them because it was after the warranty.

So I bought a new pair and I bought AppleCare,

hgf: Okay.

offsetkeyz: which only extends it for about a year. But an interesting thing about AirPods. Is that their battery is welded to the device. You can’t, no one can repair and replace the battery to AirPods. So as soon as they go bad, they are literally trash. They just go right in the trash can.

hgf: Yeah, those are designed to get tossed.

offsetkeyz: But what happens if only one of your AirPods, like one bud went bad and the other one’s battery still works fine, yet you throw it into the trash? Like, what? What could happen?

hgf: with e waste, we want to dispose of that through a

disposal company that manages e waste because a lot of these products have lithium batteries in them, which needs to be handled with care.

And other batteries have heavy metals in them. And just different chemical and mechanical components that a lot of these products can be recycled and kind of stripped down for the metal pieces of it. And so like with wiring and cords and different parts of it.

Those can be recycled. What I’ve heard is that older pieces of technology can actually be deconstructed much better and recycled and there’s more valuable metals like older pieces of tech have gold and copper in them so it’s like valuable and worth the effort to recycling versus a lot of e waste now is plastic, the batteries of airpods can’t come out, a lot of it is useless and not quite worth the effort,

offsetkeyz: and where, can you find like drop offs for these e waste things? I know they’re around, but do you know of any like specific brand name stores that might have any?

hgf: any? Ooh, that’s a good question.

I need to check, but I’m pretty sure Staples has

a drop off option. But I would check, I would Google your city that you live in, or county, if you’re in a more rural area, and e scrap, e waste, and then they should have a resource for disposal options there.

offsetkeyz: should have a resource for disposal options there.

trucks that catch on fire from compacting lithium batteries it’s kind of an


hgf: Pretty much anything that’s rechargeable has a lithium battery in it, so you do not wanna put it in the trashcan. Cities and counties are really having to bear the weight of managing these types of fires every so often.

offsetkeyz: So, if the baTteries are lucky enough to make it through the trash truck route without catching all the trash on fire, what other risks are there for disposing of your batteries just in the regular trash? So

hgf: e waste, sitting in landfills, electronics, can leach heavy metals into the soil like arsenic, mercury, and lead

and so this will contaminate the soil, potentially the groundwater. It rains, we can have toxic runoff. It’s best to dispose of your tech properly. We want to tackle this issue at the source. Which, you know, starts with Apple taking accountability for their impact on the environment. That’s it. which I found that they do have an e waste recycling program. It says it depends on your area, so you can go to Apple’s website, type in electronic recycling, and then they have a search where you can see what your options are.

What some people might not know is recycling is a business, so any private haulers like Rumpke, Republic, Waste management. What they take in your area is based on what is there a market demand for in your area? So if your area doesn’t take glass, they don’t have a buyer of glass. So whether or not companies have a buyer dictates what they take.

Our area does not take type 5 plastics, which are like white sour cream jars. They don’t take that because they don’t have a buyer for type 5. But a couple counties over they do, they have a company that will buy those products. So they sort them, bail them up, and then the company comes and picks it up

a small price.

offsetkeyz: I just assumed that if a product was recyclable, like aluminum is infinitely recyclable, paper can be recycled pretty easily, cardboard can be recycled pretty easily, milk cartons obviously can be recycled, whatever, if it is recyclable, the government should be paying to have it recycled, right?

That’s the way that I thought. And then only recently did I get to take a tour of a recycling plant to find out that they don’t take Orange juice cartons because no one will buy orange juice cartons. So even though those are completely recyclable They’re just going to landfills and they’re often going into the recycling because people know that they’re recyclable

hgf: From a technical stance, yeah.

offsetkeyz: Yeah, technically they can be recycled so they get put into recycling bins and that might reduce the amount of recyclable materials in that bin that can then be processed because it’s quote, contaminated, which is a thing, but it’s not a reason to not recycle.

It’s not as impactful as you think. So I don’t know if I should address that, that rumor of Contamination. Like, if you throw a material that isn’t recyclable into the recycling bin, the whole truck is not contaminated.

hgf: Yeah, they have a pretty good process at most facilities to sort that stuff out. Definitely look at your local government’s website of what they take and don’t take to be sure.

But it’s not the end of the world if your city doesn’t take cartons and you put a carton in there. Usually when the whole load is contaminated and tossed, it’s pretty rare because they do want to have that product to sell. And then it’ll usually be if something’s sticky and wet is all over everything.

So your products don’t have to be a hundred percent clean and dry, like spotless and completely dry. But if you threw a gallon of ice cream in your bin, that’s gonna get all over the whole truck.

offsetkeyz: truck.

hgf: I got an email a couple weeks ago about There being a mysterious sludge in the bottom of someone’s recycling cart like the top was recyclables But they filled I mean what looked like toxic waste It was like sticky and the whole bottom of the bin like a couple inches high So that all got dumped into the truckload and they had to throw away the whole truck.

They don’t want to do that typically because they have to pay a landfill tipping fee to go to the landfill and toss that load. So it’s really, you know, people are like, recycling isn’t real, all goes to trash. Companies have to pay to dispose of the trash. They have to pay a landfill to use it. versus they can get a little bit paid for your recycled materials.

So your products are being recycled. It’s not a complete myth. It’s not as perfect and seamless as we once thought. And water bottles can’t be made into new water bottles. They can only be downcycled into fibers. But I just hate that rumor that recycling isn’t real. It’s very important and it does happen.

offsetkeyz: , I find it interesting that recycling is a business. It’s important to keep that in mind because as Hot Girl Farmer mentioned earlier, electronics used to be made

With a lot more valuable materials like copper and gold and now they’re being made with cheap materials so had they been made with nicer materials still there’s a chance that recycling companies would take them and dispose of them properly so that they could sell the materials out of them but as it stands right now an iPhone doesn’t have any valuable materials in it so it’s literally just filling up landfills no one’s getting any value from them after after they’re disposed of.

Don’t throw your electronics in the trash regardless. The batteries are probably glued in and can catch fire because they’re probably still active.

If they don’t catch fire they’re going to go to a landfill. The landfill is going to get compressed and this includes energizer batteries too because those get compressed. The toxic materials out of those batteries end up leaking out into the environment creating a toxic sludge Which, over time, will start to work its way towards your water source, wherever that is, or where your food is grown, or whatever.

It’s polluting the environment, and we don’t need any more of that. Right

hgf: any more of that.

And we kind of got off

offsetkeyz: we kind of got off on a little tangent about recycling, which is always great, always needs to be heard. But, just to recap, the right to repair movement will increase the lifespan of your devices, directly decreasing the amount that go into the landfill.

hgf: can kind of move


offsetkeyz: So yeah, we can kind of move into sort of the security implications of this. One of the other reasons I moved over to an entirely Apple ecosystem is they lock your device to you, which is what this movement is against, right? If someone steals my MacBook, they can’t use any part of it.

hgf: They

offsetkeyz: can’t open it up and take the motherboard because that motherboard is locked to me. They can’t open it up and use the chip. They can’t open it up, do anything. They can’t use the screen.

They can’t do anything. That is terrible for landfills because one device, one person, that’s like if your car was locked to you and the tires came welded on, right? Like it’s,

hgf: it’s great for

offsetkeyz: the company making the cars, but. There would just be cars everywhere being thrown away because they couldn’t sell them secondhand, right?

So I love that from a security perspective. I feel comfortable. Well, not quite comfortable But leaving my MacBook on the passenger seat of my car when I go into the coffee shop because by this point Criminals who are breaking into cars know that they can’t sell my MacBook They have no incentive to steal it.

So they won’t go and break into my car for that MacBook that’s sitting there. Right? So one of the biggest security implications with the right to repair movement is that will no longer be possible since we can’t lock hardware to software. And again, just to reiterate, my concern is that there will be a lot more theft of these in order to try to get the parts out of them.

Right? So that’s a big physical security concern.

So this does open up the door for new patents, new ideas.

I don’t know if anything like this exists, but Apple is likely going to try to figure out a way to continue to lock devices to people, because people like me want that in the product. And I’m sure there are ways that you can maybe tell the device that you’re about to repair it, tell it what part you’re about to replace, maybe input the serial number for that part,

hgf: and

offsetkeyz: once you put it in you let the device know that the repair is complete and it maybe runs a scan of the new piece and then locks it. I don’t know, it’s got to be possible.

I’m just spitballing ideas here, but maybe if an unrecognized or an uncertified part is placed into an iPhone, there is a permanent banner on the top of the iPhone in red that says this iPhone is now using non certified parts. As soon as this goes into effect, people who sell their used iPhones, like I have, I think most of my iPhones I’ve sold, the value is going down drastically because you can’t verify that that is using certified parts anymore.

Up until this bill, all iPhones had certified iPhone parts because no other parts could be put in their iPhone. It was a guarantee. So buying an iPhone, buying an Apple watch, I’m wearing a used Apple watch right now. was a safe bet on Facebook marketplace in a sea of unsafe bets

hgf: Yeah, my thing with this is for profit companies, I feel like, always find a way.

They have the resources and the staff usually to accommodate these new laws versus it’s not fair for local governments and entities have to scramble to pick up the pieces and deal with this mess. I think with any environmental issue, the emphasis needs to be put on the manufacturer, the for profit businesses, to handle their products responsibly.

It doesn’t make sense to me that And Apple stores in a town selling a bunch of iPhones, creating a lot of e waste, and then it’s the municipality’s job to scramble and figure it out. It’s like, you’re doing business here. You figure it out.

offsetkeyz: Right. As soon as the product leaves your doors, it’s no longer your responsibility.

hgf: whack. Yeah, I think we’re

offsetkeyz: yeah, I think we’re in the next 10 to 20 to 30 years. We’re going to start to see a shift where companies are going to start to be responsible.

They’re going to be held responsible for the entire life. Of their product from maintenance and repairs to disposal it all like like I hate to see Plastic Starbucks cups laying in the gutter when I’m on my evening jog or whatever It’s like as soon as that cup is handed to the consumer it becomes their problem like we need we need to have Starbucks Trash trucks driving around every city just picking up Starbucks cups or the government can fine Starbucks for every cup it finds.

Maybe, maybe that’s the new aluminum can business for, for homeless people. They go around and pick up Starbucks cups and the government will give them 10 cents per cup or something like that. And they can go then find Starbucks for, I don’t know, but companies now are going to have to start becoming accountable for their products.

hgf: Yeah, remember we’re in an era of all time corporate

offsetkeyz: yeah. Corporate

hgf: Oh yeah. All time highs.

offsetkeyz: Corporations are getting bigger and bigger and richer and richer and finding new ways to stifle out competition.

One of the other concerns that I came up with when preparing this episode was if third party parts or certified parts are allowed into iPhones. Like, what’s the limit? Am I gonna start are we gonna start seeing completely Aftermarket iPhones out there that I mean, it’s just crazy it’s it’s possible

hgf: we

offsetkeyz: make our PCs from the from the ground up with a case and a graphics processor and a CPU RAM and Throw windows on there and it’s a fully functioning PC. Is that gonna be what happens to iPhones?

hgf: Yeah, I can’t see that. I can’t picture them letting that happen.

So, the last security concern I did want to talk about is if we’re giving the ability to third parties to repair with their own parts. Right now, they have to be certified parts, at least in Oregon, but I don’t know how these laws will progress. It could be possible that down the line they’re allowed to, repair them with any part.

offsetkeyz: There’s a thing called hardware vulnerabilities. Uh, which Apple actually just discovered one on their own devices, which affects encryption and it’s, it’s hardware. So there’s nothing you can do in the code to prevent it. Every little piece of hardware could have these vulnerabilities. And if you’re allowing third party parts into your iPhone, those third party parts might not be quite as secure as the ones that are developed by Apple and tested by Apple. They might be good enough to get the job done, but But they might not be as secure and that’s all well and good. You know, you can continue to go to the Apple store for your repairs, even after these laws are placed, but that does directly impact the brand that is Apple once their devices are no longer guaranteed to be as secure as they claim they are

and. I think that will go hand in hand with the signing of the hardware and Apple has some things to figure out. Luckily they have lots of smart people at Apple. They’ll likely figure something out to make sure, to guarantee security. But they’ve got their work cut out for them.

And yeah, it’s a very important reminder that this is the pioneer phase of the right to repair movement. There’s gonna be things they’re not getting right right off the bat. As far as we’re concerned, as far as The Daily Decrypt’s concerned, it’s important to support this movement. Because there has to be a middle ground between complete monopolization of your devices, leading to tons of waste and a shorter lifespan. And just the wild, wild west, with counterfeit devices and no security updates and all the, there’s got to be a middle ground, uh, and we have to find it, and we might make some mistakes along the way, but we’re going to continue to support this movement,

hgf: We love middle ground.

offsetkeyz: a lukewarm family here at the Daily Decrypt. But yeah, keep tuning in, we’ll keep coming at you with these updates as the right to repair movement progresses. But that’s all we got for you today. Huge thanks to Hot Girl Farmer for coming on and sharing her solid waste soliloquy.

hgf: Oh my gosh.

offsetkeyz: Thank you for sharing your solid waste soliloquy. And we will talk to you some more next time.

hgf: time. guys.

for a nap.

hgf: I know.

I’m so sleepy

offsetkeyz: It’s all that Michelob Ultra.

hgf: Hmmmm. I’m a little

offsetkeyz: I’m a little wired, you can probably tell. We just swapped bodies for a second. I was just like, words, words, words, words, words, words, words.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.