GM says you don't own your car, you just license it

  • metta

    Posts: 38675

    May 21, 2015 10:00 PM GMT
    GM says you don't own your car, you just license it
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    May 22, 2015 2:09 AM GMT
    metta8 saidGM says you don't own your car, you just license it

    The ECM, TCM and BCM software only.

    And we 'jailbreak' that all the time, mostly to remove top speed limiters. My last new car didn't make it through day one before I had it done.
  • musclmed

    Posts: 3223

    May 22, 2015 2:06 PM GMT
    They are unlikely to prevail given almost everything made nowadays has software.

    A television , microwave, computer , "cell phone" all have the same scenario.

    There is open source ECU's , that can void the warranty. But remove the GM software.

    I was almost going to forgive GM for my first care 1981 cutlass supreme. Which was horrible btw. I bought a cadillac in 2013. The new CUE system is sluggish even in the 2015 models which I do not understand. Otherwise the car is solid.

    I suspect that GM spends so much time in making this system proprietary that it hurts its performance which undermines the whole point of it. If it ran android it would work well, or had a overpowered processor.
    My older acura 2005 had better voice recognition. The cue is a 3 core system 2 cores for voice recognition. The only way it really works is to send a destination via Onstar to my car from my phone.

    I feel GM is still full of those bloated corporate administrators that are still full of themselves and out of touch. Nonsense like this legal assertion hurts more in bad press than any possible gain in real dollars. They should spend time and money on improving the cars.
  • Svnw688

    Posts: 3343

    May 22, 2015 2:35 PM GMT
    GM is legally correct to an extent, as is John Deere. Look, let's clarify things a bit. A consumer would have a property interest in the physical components of the car (e.g., the bolts, the metal pillars, the glass windshield, etc.).

    The GM code that causes the engine to work (I'll be generous here and not make a 'crappy cars' joke), IS absolutely subject to copyright. As such, you have no right to jailbreak or otherwise 'use' it other than for its intended uses GM permits. It sucks, but it's how the law works. Work around it if you want, but suffer the consequences accordingly. Argue it should be against the law to force consumers to pay more for certian GM service, but that's a law that--in the future--would change how things are. As is, GM is right.

    It's akin to a novel. The author of The Shining is Stephen King, and assuming he hasn't assigned the CopyRight (I doubt he has), then Mr. King is the "owner." If you go and buy a physical hard cover book of The Shining, then you have a property interest in the physical paper and stitching, and a license to read those words. Those words are "yours" in the sense that you are permitted to read them, but you may NOT reproduce them. You can't take your book, go to a copier, and sell bootleg versions of "The Shining" for 1/3rd the cost at Borders or Barnes and Noble. Despite your payment, you do NOT own his words, he has licensed them to you.

    Americans are having a problem with this because we, literally, have a car culture that treats cars like people we love and, yes, own. But we don't. And that hurts us. But copyright law is copyright law.