New copyright exemptions let you legally repair your phone or jailbreak voice assistants

With a huge victory over the right to repair hackers, tinkers and sports, the US Copyright Office has made some changes to the legal exemption for the DMCA, making it much easier to create software tools that owners can hack and modify. , iFixit Repair your device as described by its founder, Kyle Wiens.

Under section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), it is "illegal to circumvent the technical measures used to prevent unauthorized access to a work." Telephone device manufacturers have long used section 1201 to prevent owners from disassembling or repairing their devices, arguing that unlocking the software during component replacement or gadget modification is a violation of applicable laws [19659003] However, as part of that law, citizens can apply for an exemption of 1201 trillion every three years whenever The Office decides what kind of repair and software tools are allowed or not permitted by law. The final ruling on migration has just been announced (effective October 28) and new protection for device repairs will apply.

Wiens' post represents the biggest change:

  1. You have the right to jailbreak and modify audio assist devices such as those provided by Amazon's Alexa or Google Assistant.
  2. It is now legitimate to unlock new unused phones.
  3. By installing new firmware or software, such as "smart phones," "household appliances," and "home systems," Wiens can legally fix devices like the permanently bricked Revolv home hub, Point out.
  4. Repairing cars, tractors and other motor vehicles by modifying the software alone is legal. (John Deere, a tractor company, is making a very ridiculous claim to allowing the user to modify the tractor's software, even hacking the software owner with the name of a legitimate repair work. And use the music as a pirated version).
  5. Finally, it is legal for a third party to perform this type of repair on your behalf. So even if you can not code a way to repair a bricked smart home, it is not illegal to give money to someone who can do it for you.

The main aspects of the 1201 are still there. The Copyright Office did not grant exemption to Section 1201 for repairing the game console. This means that you can not directly replace the Busted CD drive on the Xbox or PS4 because it is locked to a specific console via software for security reasons.

The decision also applies to certain categories of smartphones, appliances, home systems and automated land vehicles. Therefore, anything that does not fit in a bucket (such as a boat or airplane) may be protected by law. I'm not hacked.

Finally, as the most important decision, the Copyright Office's ruling still does not allow trafficking of software tools that bypass this type of software lock, even in the name of repair. As a result, you can develop tools that you can repair yourself, and you can pay people for repairs, but you can not distribute or sell the tool to others.

The gadget in the recovery community is still a big win. Regardless of what the manufacturer says, you have the right to modify, hack or repair your purchase in any way you wish. And as our device becomes increasingly dependent on software, it is very good.

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