Deere is not alone in this process; other companies have recently tried to make similar claims under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The DMCA was a law signed into effect in 1999 which helps decide the interrelation of software and hardware. Weins reports that after a hearing in July we can expect the Copyright Office to make a decision on which things we can hack and modify.
All of this may sound bizarre, but it’s nothing new.
Karl Hess, a now sadly lesser known libertarian, wrote the IRS in 1969 saying that he refused to pay his taxes. The IRS proceeded to then place a 100% lien on his property. Hess would no longer be able to deal in money to the extent that the IRS could discern he was using or making it. This forced Hess to start relying on bartering and his wife to support himself.
John Deere follows the same logic the IRS response to Hess used: You don’t really own what you receive.
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